Whilst the Internet, tweeting, blogging and the like have revolutionised the way we communicate with one another, some estimates report that misuse of social networking tools by employees at work costs the British economy billions of pounds a year and increases the risk of problems with cyber-bullying, freedom of speech and the invasion of privacy.
To cope with this ‘brave new world’, the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) advises employers to have in place a policy on social networking and to treat ‘electronic behaviour’ in the same way as they would treat ‘non-electronic behaviour’.
To this end, ACAS has issued guidance on how to develop such a policy, as well as several fact-sheets offering practical advice on how to manage the impact of social networking on:
- Managing performance;
- Discipline and grievances;
- Bullying; and
- Defamation, data protection and privacy.
See the ACAS website for further information.