How a social media policy protects your business

Even if your business isn’t using social media networks, your employees definitely are – and your business needs to be protected. Just like workplace health and safety, social media usage needs to have a policy that all staff are aware of and understand. To put together a comprehensive policy that will protect the reputation of your business and your employees, follow these steps:

  1. Utilise templates online; there are plenty of social media policy templates available online that can be easily adapted and personalised to your business. The important thing is to have one in place, as quickly as possible.
  2. Keep it simple; keep sentences short and language simple. While you do want to ensure that your business is adequately covered, there’s little point implementing a policy that is too difficult to follow. Your employees are most likely accessing multiple social media channels multiple times a day – this policy needs to be followed on a daily basis.
  3. Protect your business and your employees; make sure that your policy covers not just your business, but your staff as well. Anything potentially defamatory or negative about your company reflects on the people that work there, so this policy is for them too.
  4. Guidelines for company page/profile admins; if you do have company pages [eg company Facebook page], the policy needs to include guidelines for page admins. This part of the policy will mostly be about exercising common sense, but that doesn’t make it any less important.
  5. Guidelines for personal pages/profiles; without infringing on the rights of an employee on their own personal social media account, you have the right to include guidelines in your corporate social media policy that protect your business and other employees. This will mainly focus on ensuring no negative comments about the business/management/clients/staff are posted, and that all confidential and in-house material is not made public.

Social media is a part of many Australian’s everyday life, so getting a policy together and putting in place is a definite and immediate need for every business.