Almost 25 percent of companies restrict employee access to Facebook.com, MySpace.com and other social network sites. The statistic comes from a survey of 200 HR professionals.
The number of Americans using social networks has tripled in the past few years and the use of these sites has grown during business hours. People 35 and older are using Facebook.com and MySpace.com in large and growing numbers.
Some companies overlook the use of social networking during work hours but others view social networks as “productivity killers”.
Around 8 percent of businesses reportedly encourage workers to use social networks, and 10% of companies surveyed say that social networks are valuable sites for marketing, networking and sales efforts. In addition, some companies say that banning the use of social networks like Linkedin.com and Facebook.com could make it difficult to recruit young employees.
The majority of businesses aren’t formally dealing with the issue of social networks. Fifty-nine percent of companies do not have a formal corporate policy on using social networks during work hours. Almost 50 percent of companies reported that social networks aren’t an issue as long as employees complete their work. So far, formal company policies on social networks are minimal because social networking is such a new phenomenon.
A recent study from a U.K. network security firm Global Secure System showed that employees are using 30 minutes or more per work day on social networks. Lost productivity is not the only reason that some companies ban the use of social networks at work. Computer viruses and the exposure of private company information are some of the dangers raised by too much social network usage.
More than two out of three information technology employees surveyed by Network World in 2007 reported that they use social networks. IT employees are more likely to use the professional social networks like LinkedIn.com, but Facebook.com and MySpace.com are used as well.
Source: Network World