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Many employers ‘actively encourage’ their employees to use social media at work

October 19th, 2011 by Gary Ennis

Significantly more than half of employers in the UK actively encourage the use of social media for work-related activities such as internet marketing.

According to legal firm DLA Piper, a total of 65% of employers do this, whilst more than three-quarters of employers say that they have a social media presence. Altogether, 86% are on Facebook, 78% are on LinkedIn and 62% are on Twitter.

The findings appear in DLA Piper’s new report Knowing your tweet from your trend: keeping pace with social media in the workplace. The report investigates the problems that employers face in staying abreast of social media and suggests procedures that could be put in place to minimise the risk posed by employees using social media at work.

According to the report, only 25% of respondents have a standalone, dedicated social media policy. Less than half (43%) have a social media policy as part of another policy, for example as part of their HR rules and regulations.

Kate Hodgkiss, a partner in DLA Piper’s employment practice and author of the report, said:

“There is widespread recognition that social media is not just a tool for marketing, but something that needs to be considered by all aspects of a business; from HR, to risk, to the upper echelons of corporate management. Our respondents recognise the benefits of social media to get their messages out to a wide audience, at a fraction of the cost of traditional methods and far more quickly.”

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