Employment and Social Media: An Introduction to the Rules for Human Resource Professionals


Published on

Employment and Social Media: An Introduction to the Rules for Human Resource Professionals presents the basic information that a human resource professional in Colorado needs to be aware about when dealing with employment issues.

Published in: Business
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Employment and Social Media: An Introduction to the Rules for Human Resource Professionals

  1. 2. What is Social Media? <ul><li>Social media is the use of Internet and web-based applications to communicate to one or more individuals. </li></ul><ul><li>Social media can be considered personal communication or broadcasting depending on the number of people that the message reaches. </li></ul>
  2. 3. Personal Communication <ul><li>Instant messaging </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Typically between two people </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Personal websites </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Personal blog </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Text messaging </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Typically between two people </li></ul></ul>
  3. 4. Broadcast Media <ul><ul><li>Broadcast media is meant to be read by more than just friends and family. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Professional communications </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Special interest sites </li></ul></ul></ul>
  4. 5. Professional Communication <ul><li>Company website </li></ul><ul><li>LinkedIn </li></ul><ul><li>Industry specific sites (Lawyers.com, Avvo.com, etc) </li></ul><ul><li>Facebook fanpages </li></ul>
  5. 7. Personal/Professional Sites <ul><li>Facebook </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Typically your profile is personal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Typically your fanpage is business or special interest </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Twitter </li></ul><ul><li>Blogging </li></ul>
  6. 11. Biggest Things to Remember <ul><li>Policies are not new! </li></ul><ul><li>Social media is just another way of doing something old! </li></ul>
  7. 12. Three Areas of Online/Social Media for HR <ul><li>Hiring Process </li></ul><ul><li>During Employment </li></ul><ul><li>After Termination of Employment </li></ul>
  8. 13. Prior to Employment <ul><li>Recent study by Harris Interactive regarding HR personnel: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>45% use social networking sites to research job candidates </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>11% planning to implement social media screening in the very near future </li></ul></ul>
  9. 14. Hiring Process <ul><li>Recent study by Harris Interactive regarding HR personnel: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>53% won’t hire if provocative photos and/or info </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>44% won’t hire if alcohol and/or drug use </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>35% won’t hire if bad comments about former employers </li></ul></ul>
  10. 15. Can Discriminate <ul><li>Illegal drug use </li></ul><ul><li>Poor writing/communication skills </li></ul><ul><li>Comments about previous employers </li></ul><ul><li>Racist/inappropriate comments </li></ul>
  11. 16. Can’t Discriminate <ul><li>Race </li></ul><ul><li>Age </li></ul><ul><li>Disabilities </li></ul><ul><li>Religion </li></ul><ul><li>Veteran status </li></ul><ul><li>National origin </li></ul><ul><li>Sexual orientation </li></ul>
  12. 17. Things to Consider <ul><li>Privacy concerns </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Questions if research online violates Fair Credit Reporting Act </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Discrimination </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hard to prove you didn’t use information you found online </li></ul></ul>
  13. 18. Areas of Concern <ul><li>Not everything online is true </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Some sights have wrong information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Others have old information </li></ul></ul>
  14. 19. Best Practices <ul><li>Have non-involved party research and remove any information that isn’t relevant/violates discrimination laws </li></ul><ul><li>Have clear policy laid out and follow it for all potential employees </li></ul><ul><li>Get release from potential employees that you are conducting online screening </li></ul>
  15. 20. Social Media during Employment <ul><li>Confidentiality Agreements </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Have signed when employed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>State what can and cannot be disclosed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Information about guests </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Photos of guests </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Company information </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consistent for all employees </li></ul></ul>
  16. 21. Communications Policies <ul><li>Possibly need whole communications policy </li></ul><ul><li>What can be put online </li></ul><ul><li>When it can be put online </li></ul><ul><li>Who can access the information </li></ul><ul><li>Whether company property can be used to access personal sites </li></ul>
  17. 22. Recommendations <ul><li>Online recommendations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Policy needed on what managers can say online </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can be used against company later in court </li></ul></ul>
  18. 23. Endorsements <ul><li>FTC recent guidelines on endorsements </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Must disclose material connection </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If company doesn’t have policy in place, can be liable for comments of employees! </li></ul></ul>
  19. 24. Privacy Concerns <ul><li>First Amendment only applies to government, not private corporations! </li></ul><ul><li>Even then </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Must have reasonable expectation of privacy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intrusion that is offensive to the reasonable person </li></ul></ul>
  20. 25. Retaliation <ul><li>Cannot retaliate for: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Complaining about illegal practices </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Whistle-blowing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In some cases, complaining about management </li></ul></ul>
  21. 26. Separation <ul><li>In some cases, need clear separation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ask employees to put disclaimers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ask employees not to talk about work </li></ul></ul>
  22. 27. Other laws may apply! <ul><li>Wiretapping laws </li></ul><ul><li>Telecommunications laws </li></ul><ul><li>Labor laws </li></ul><ul><li>Trade secret laws </li></ul><ul><li>Copyright laws </li></ul>
  23. 28. After Employment <ul><li>Confidentiality Agreements </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Need to have resigned </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Make sure employees understand continuing obligations! </li></ul></ul>
  24. 29. Recommendations <ul><li>After dismissal </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Careful with recommendations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Limited in scope and nature </li></ul></ul>
  25. 30. Monitor <ul><li>Monitor for damage control </li></ul><ul><li>GM case </li></ul>
  26. 31. Stories that made the news <ul><li>No cases in Colorado made it to Appellate or Supreme Court yet </li></ul><ul><li>Other cases around nation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Man hacked into computers, one year prison </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Guard terminated for beating inmate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eagles fired employee who called Eagle personnel “retarded” </li></ul></ul>
  27. 32. Additional Stories <ul><li>Police woman fired for provocative photos </li></ul><ul><li>Potential employee not hired for tweeting about possible job </li></ul><ul><li>Police officer posted about movies before beating </li></ul>
  28. 33. More stories <ul><li>Hospital workers fired for racists comments </li></ul><ul><li>Technician fired for murder victim photos </li></ul><ul><li>Police officer fired for leaking sensitive info </li></ul>
  29. 34. Dominos’ Case <ul><li>Video by employees </li></ul><ul><li>Criminal charges </li></ul><ul><li>Damage to Dominos </li></ul>
  30. 35. NJ Case <ul><li>Restaurant employee created MySpace group </li></ul><ul><li>Accessed by managers, eventually fired employee </li></ul><ul><li>Violation of telecommunications law </li></ul>
  31. 36. Georgia Case <ul><li>School teacher fired for Europe pictures </li></ul><ul><li>Lawsuit pending over privacy currently </li></ul>
  32. 37. City of Ontario v. Quon <ul><li>Supreme Court case involving texting </li></ul><ul><li>Used company phone </li></ul><ul><li>Involves police department </li></ul><ul><li>Written communication policy </li></ul>
  33. 38. Final Thoughts <ul><li>Have good policies in place. </li></ul><ul><li>Be consistent. </li></ul><ul><li>New media, same laws. </li></ul><ul><li>If in doubt, ask questions. </li></ul><ul><li>Follow the same rules for online communication that you would for offline communications. </li></ul><ul><li>Use common sense. </li></ul>
  34. 39. Law Office of E.C. Lewis, P.C. <ul><li>Elizabeth C. Lewis, Esq. </li></ul><ul><li>www.eclewis.com </li></ul><ul><li>720-530-3405 </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>www.facebook.com/legalsolutions </li></ul><ul><li>www.twitter.com/eclewis </li></ul>