Social networking is an effective business tool but only when used appropriately
According to a white paper commissioned by mobile phone management provider ttMobiles
, businesses are suffering from an alarming trend of 'Social Notworking' with over 90% of employees using a business internet connection to browse the web for personal reasons, and over 50% using it to interact on a variety of social networking platforms. These figures include time spent online using a company smartphone - something that is currently dismissed by the majority of organisations.
Fact: Thirty minutes of video in Vienna will be charged back at £30-£450, while one hour on Facebook in Florida can cost £25-£30 and 20 minutes of listening to Britney in Brussels could cost between £10 and £60.
If you regularly travel to Europe or beyond and keep in touch with friends and family on your smartphone via Facebook or catch your favourite television programme on YouTube
, you could be costing your company far more than expected.
With the range of mobile applications and internet-enabled handsets, including Apple and Blackberry, coupled with a resurgence from Microsoft and HP,businesses are being urged to start looking into ways of implementing a clear cut internet usage and social networking policy for their mobile phones.
Peter Readman, ttMobiles' co-founder and director, commented; “Many employees have a smartphone placed on their desk with no documentation or guidance on when, where and how much they can use their new business tool. The current 24/7 lifestyle demands that employees are available to work at the drop of a hat but companies need to be aware of the blur between work and home life. Organisations need to demonstrate how they promote and restrict the use of the internet within the working environment to ensure employees are aware of clear distinction between what the company is prepared to pay and what it is not.”
If employees are made aware of data download costs they may think twice about using their work smartphone for entertainment, especially in working hours, Readman believes.