Key Considerations: Using Social Media to Promote Ethical Practices

by NAVEX Global
Contact

NAVEX Global and PwC recently sponsored a groundbreaking study from the Ethics Resource Center around Social Networking in the workplace.  There was a lot covered in the study, so we’ve put the results in context for ethics and compliance officers.  How can you act on the report findings – and utilize social media – to advance organizational goals?

The study gives employers some clear guidance on what works. One of the best conclusions from this report, in my mind, is that employers have some concrete numbers to back up the value of some common and practical compliance steps. Both having a policy and conducting training on social media change employee behaviors. These efforts improve compliance and reduce risk. It's not often that the compliance community gets data like this that can provide ROI and justify the investments they are making.

Yet, employers are not taking advantage of these simple tools. The actual percentage of employers with a policy or who conduct social media training is quite low. My advice? Organizations need to focus on social media policies and training in the coming year. 

I was very surprised to see the retaliation number as high as it was for active social networkers (ASNs), or those who spend 30 percent or more of their day online.  (Yes, 30 percent.) ASNs are more likely to see and to report misconduct (77 percent) than other U.S. workers (66 percent).

Unfortunately, they report being subjected to retaliation at a staggering rate as well. Fifty-six percent of ASNs who reported misconduct said they experienced retaliation – compared to only 18 percent of U.S. workers. Retaliation is a very significant legal risk area for employers of all sizes, meaning employers must be training employees and managers about this risk. The difference in those retaliation figures is so vast that it begs for additional research.

I also found it startling that ASNs were so willing to engage in behaviors that are clearly risk-creating for an organization.  Fifty percent of ASNs would keep copies of confidential work documents for possible use in a next job, for example. And this group is also the most likely to change job within five years (72 percent of them). We know – from the report – that a large percentage of the ASNs are managers and senior managers, so they have access to a lot of confidential business information.

Despite some of those findings – or perhaps, because of them – when looking at your own social media efforts, there are areas where organizations can harness the power of social media to advance organizational culture. Consider some of these different engagement methods to utilize with your stakeholders:

  1. Host a moderated conversation group (think LinkedIn style). These groups allow compliance professionals to post content, questions, and stories – and then employees can respond. 
  2. Invite employees to submit videos regarding ethics and compliance topics. For example ask employees (and even business partners) to submit nominations for people they work with whose behaviors/actions demonstrate high levels of integrity.  Share the submissions on a company intranet.
  3. Create compliance videos (or use short form training videos like NAVEX Global’s Bursts) that employees can share with each other. Let them help spread the word.
  4. Start a company blog dedicated to ethics and compliance. Use this site to communicate values, explain what is meant by ethical performance, and share examples that are directly relevant to employees and managers. Best Buy has done a really great job with a public-facing blog run by their chief ethics officer, Kathleen Edmund. Consider allowing employees to submit stories and thoughts to the blog as well. 
  5. Create a compliance department intranet where employees and managers can share ethics and compliance resources (articles, websites, blogs, books, etc.) and where managers can add/download materials for team meetings or to facilitate further discussion.
  6. Create a moderated wiki page; allow managers and employees to help create content. 
  7. Use social media tools (such as Facebook and YouTube) to publically share your organization's good deeds. Many large companies now communicate with the general public about their commitment to ethics and compliance.  
  8. Host internal webinars that allow employees to answer poll questions anonymously, and ask questions of senior leaders about ethics and compliance.

And, as we’ve discussed, social media outreach also comes with considerations for organizations to make before embarking.  Some key factors to contemplate:

  1. Think broadly: engaging employees through social media is about more than a full-blown experience like Facebook or LinkedIn. It can be an internal network or information sharing system that is fairly simplistic. It’s about using technology to help start the dialog and encourage interaction.
  2. Make it interactive: social media, by definition, is not one-way communication. It’s participatory, collaborative and interactive.
  3. Educate employees about proper use: teach employees how to use your tools properly and how to be brand ambassadors for your organization. EMC does a great job of this in the video they produced on social media policy for their global employee base.
  4. Start with a focused approach: try one type of tool or method and really tend to it carefully.
  5. Enlist content creators: if you want the experience to be successful you need to create content often; enlist the help of people who are dedicated or responsible for regularly generating content or discussions.
  6. Post content on a very regular basis: you have to keep it interesting and refreshed if you want people to engage in a dialog.
  7. Make it relevant: make the content interesting and relevant, and allow employees to comment or submit questions/information.
  8. Tell good stories: find a way to share stories about managers and employees in your organization that are doing the right thing; you will set a good example and help build a more ethical culture.

Written by:

NAVEX Global
Contact
more
less

NAVEX Global on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
Sign up using*

Already signed up? Log in here

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Privacy Policy (Updated: October 8, 2015):
hide

JD Supra provides users with access to its legal industry publishing services (the "Service") through its website (the "Website") as well as through other sources. Our policies with regard to data collection and use of personal information of users of the Service, regardless of the manner in which users access the Service, and visitors to the Website are set forth in this statement ("Policy"). By using the Service, you signify your acceptance of this Policy.

Information Collection and Use by JD Supra

JD Supra collects users' names, companies, titles, e-mail address and industry. JD Supra also tracks the pages that users visit, logs IP addresses and aggregates non-personally identifiable user data and browser type. This data is gathered using cookies and other technologies.

The information and data collected is used to authenticate users and to send notifications relating to the Service, including email alerts to which users have subscribed; to manage the Service and Website, to improve the Service and to customize the user's experience. This information is also provided to the authors of the content to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

JD Supra does not sell, rent or otherwise provide your details to third parties, other than to the authors of the content on JD Supra.

If you prefer not to enable cookies, you may change your browser settings to disable cookies; however, please note that rejecting cookies while visiting the Website may result in certain parts of the Website not operating correctly or as efficiently as if cookies were allowed.

Email Choice/Opt-out

Users who opt in to receive emails may choose to no longer receive e-mail updates and newsletters by selecting the "opt-out of future email" option in the email they receive from JD Supra or in their JD Supra account management screen.

Security

JD Supra takes reasonable precautions to insure that user information is kept private. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. However, please note that no method of transmitting or storing data is completely secure and we cannot guarantee the security of user information. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors may compromise the security of user information at any time.

If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, you must immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us at info@jdsupra.com. In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your user information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you of that development and, if so, will endeavor to do so as promptly as practicable under the circumstances.

Sharing and Disclosure of Information JD Supra Collects

Except as otherwise described in this privacy statement, JD Supra will not disclose personal information to any third party unless we believe that disclosure is necessary to: (1) comply with applicable laws; (2) respond to governmental inquiries or requests; (3) comply with valid legal process; (4) protect the rights, privacy, safety or property of JD Supra, users of the Service, Website visitors or the public; (5) permit us to pursue available remedies or limit the damages that we may sustain; and (6) enforce our Terms & Conditions of Use.

In the event there is a change in the corporate structure of JD Supra such as, but not limited to, merger, consolidation, sale, liquidation or transfer of substantial assets, JD Supra may, in its sole discretion, transfer, sell or assign information collected on and through the Service to one or more affiliated or unaffiliated third parties.

Links to Other Websites

This Website and the Service may contain links to other websites. The operator of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using the Service through the Website and link to another site, you will leave the Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We shall have no responsibility or liability for your visitation to, and the data collection and use practices of, such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of this Website and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our privacy policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use the Service or Website following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes. If you do not agree with the terms of this Policy, as it may be amended from time to time, in whole or part, please do not continue using the Service or the Website.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, your dealings with this Web site, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at: info@jdsupra.com.

- hide
*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.