Facebook at work
Facebook. Image: Rawpixel.com/Shutterstock

More than half of Irish workplaces ban social media

9 Mar 2017

There’s a good chance that your new job will ban some form of social media, with the generational divide becoming clearer than ever.

A new study into Irish workplaces shows a remarkable adherence to the banning of social media, with Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter on the watch list.

Looking at 500 workplaces throughout the country, Facebook was found to be banned in 47pc of cases, Twitter in 36pc, Instagram and Snapchat in 33pc, and WhatsApp in 30pc. In total, more than half of workplaces (56pc) have some form of ban.

Facebook ban

According to a recent study on Irish approaches to social media as a whole, Facebook (2.2m), Twitter (835,000) and Instagram (720,000) are our favourite tools. Banning them from the workplace, so, perhaps makes for an underwhelming shift.

Chas Moloney, director of Ricoh Ireland and UK, which ran today’s study, said outlawing social media is “draconian”, and prevents employees from “developing their own digital work styles”.

The companies studied for this report all employ 100-plus people, meaning these bans affect a significant number of the population.

“Businesses should reverse blanket bans on social tools and, where appropriate, integrate them into office working environments,” he said.

“Employees cannot improve their digital dexterity if they are denied access to familiar social tools and platforms that can be used to improve their skill sets.”

The reason to ban certain social media channels is obvious, with Facebook a prime candidate in terms of workers slacking off – though it’s not something that the older and younger demographic can agree on.

The vast majority of 16-24-year-olds believe that social media can enhance the workplace, while less than one-quarter of those aged 55 or more agree.

Considering the constant evolution of social media, bans like this can irk some employees.

On 22 February, the Great Place to Work in Ireland 2017 results were announced and Promed, Cisco and Workday took away the top prizes for best small, medium and large places to work respectively.

Companies that make the list are more likely to attract the best talent as it is based upon what the current employees say, as well as the companies’ own policies.

Although it’s unclear which companies in Ireland ban certain social media platforms, one would presume those that keep their staff happy are the ones that excel.

If you have a young workforce, therefore, social media is a must.

Social media in work

Infographic: Ricoh Ireland

Facebook. Image: Rawpixel.com/Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt
By Gordon Hunt

Gordon Hunt joined Silicon Republic in October 2014 as a journalist. He spends most of his time avoiding conversations about music, appreciating even the least creative pun and rueing the day he panicked when meeting Paul McGrath. His favourite thing on the internet is the ‘Random Article’ link on Wikipedia.

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