Nowadays, social networking is becoming more popular each day. Millions people around the world are getting involved in the social networks and communication without borders. “Online social networking is a very powerful tool that enables people to congregate and share information”, according to Managing online social networking in the workplace. There are considerable benefits in using the social networks in the workplace. There is a wide diversity of social networking services such as Facebook, Twitter, e-mails, chat groups, etc. that are becoming increasingly popular to communicate socially in the workplace, according to Social networking (2011).
As well, many businesses use the broad opportunities of social networks for their needs in promotion their goods and services. As a fact, this is a wonderful opportunity for the organization to get involved in the virtual world and to be able to communicate with the customers. Also, there are certain advantages and disadvantages of the social networks. “Over the past few years, many businesses have latched onto the networking as an advertising tool, but some employers are concerned about the amount of time employees spend on social media sites and forums during work hours”, as stated in “Social network dilemma in the workplace”. Modern online services attract attention from the users and corporations all over the world, offering the variety of opportunities to be used at work for the promotion of the services.
The history of social networking and the definition of it and the importance of it.
It can be said that the social network – is an interactive multi-site, with the content, which is filled by the members of the network. Social network is aimed at building community on the Internet from people with similar interests and / or activities, including its use in the workplace. Communication takes place via a web service, internal mail or instant messaging, which facilitates the process of communication and offers sharing messages instantly, according to Social networking (2011).
There are many opportunities that modern social networks can offer for the businesses. It should be noted that for advertisers social networks provide unique opportunities for the direct contacts with the consumers. Every day, millions of users can talk about the companies, their products and services by sharing their opinions and impressions. As a result, taken separately party network community can spoil (or vice versa), the company’s reputation with multi-million dollar turnover.
It is also essential to note that the market volume of advertising in social networks is growing steadily. In 2007, according to research firm eMarketer, it reached the level of 1.225 billion dollars. In compiling the report eMarketer experts took into account all types of ads in social networks, including the media-, contextual and video advertising, as well as the costs of marketing projects, in which marketers create profiles for their products and brands in social networks. In addition, forecasts for the first time took into account the costs of creating widgets and applications. Projected to eMarketer, by 2012 the market for advertising on social networks will grow to 3.8 billion dollars.
Currently, the greatest interest to social networks is often among the companies in sectors such as consumer goods, manufacturers of alcoholic beverages, automobile manufacturers, entertainment companies, etc. Consumer brands, until recently, did not conduct an aggressive advertising policy on the Internet, but in 2009 many of them planned budgets for marketing in social networks. The growth of advertising in social networks leads to a tug-of budgets. Such a popular site for advertising, essential for using it in the organizations, as the search network, Web sites of major newspapers and magazines, online media, is now forced to cut advertising budgets, or to adjust to the realities of Web 2.0, optimizing their sites for the functional social media, as stated in Motivations for social networking at work.
The advantages of using social networking in the workplace, and example.
Today, considering the modern tendencies, millions of people find a lot of advantages in social networks, because they devote several hours per day to communicate with their “offline” friends, virtual friends, family members and colleagues. In some cases social networks help people to keep contacts and to share important information and photos. In other cases, people just waste their precious time on “online” way of life. Modern people are aimed to create their perfect online reality with friends, with photos, videos, information about themselves, feedbacks, messages, etc, and it is a good opportunity to use their services and ideas and promote them in the social networks.
Considering the advantages at the workplace, people can communicate effectively, share their ideas, look for a job and promote company’s goods and services. In this case, the advantages of the social networks can be considered indispensable. Advantages of social networks help employees to ensure that the company has considerable amount of Followers and Likes, and this means that a company has success in the society, as well as many supporters all over the world, according to Social networking (2011).
As a fact, the dynamic development of the Internet, and more and more affordable prices of this service could not but affect society and the network itself. Not so long ago in the space of World Wide Web sites began to appear, which allowed any person to find and keep in touch with former classmates / fellow students / colleagues or simply acquaintances. Similar services (social networks) have been received with enthusiasm, and their developers are well earned, while there is a variety of ways (the sale of user information, ads, built-paid Internet services), as stated in Social networking (2011).
As well, there are many positive moments that are also present in the use of the social networks. In addition to finding people with whom communication seems to be forever lost, you can also find a lot of new friends or just chat on topics of interest to you (you should not spend much time on online communication). On Web sites like LinkedIn and Profeo.com there are certain opportunities to find a decent job, good employees, get practical advice, promote your project (though it is possible also on other sites), and much more.
Also, there are many opportunity for promotion of a company in the social networks, by posting the exclusive propositions, discounts, updates, etc. to get attention from the customers all over the world, according to Motivations for social networking at work (2008). By using internet promotion, any company will benefit from the opportunities that internet offers to anyone- to be found out, to be discovered and to attract attention.
The disadvantages of using social networking in the workplace, and example.
It is essential to mention that despite advantages, there are certain disadvantages of using social networking. Among Western resources, these social networks are worth noting: MySpace (200 million in 2011), Facebook (500 million in 2011), Twitter (over 150 million in 2011) and LinkedIn (100 million in 2011). Most of the above mentioned social networking familiar wide range of users, and the popularity of using the resources is constantly growing. Disadvantages of using social networking at the workplace may include misunderstandings and can not guarantee the truthful information obtained from the users all over the world, as described in Social networking (2011).
Moreover, it is not safe to use social networks, as many people do not realize that information posted by them on social networks can be found and used by anyone, including people with not necessarily with good intentions, according to Information revelation and privacy in online social networks. Information on participants of social networks may help to find their employers, parents, children, former or current wives or husbands, debt collectors, criminals, law enforcement and so on. Some employers forbid the use of social networks – not just for the sake of economy, but also to prevent the leakage of information, according to Information revelation and privacy in online social networks (2005). Certain measures are taken in order to prevent employees to stay always online in social networks. Employers control their employees, parents control their children in order to put the limits on the use of internet. There are many limits put to stop people from wasting their time and losing their jobs. However, these measures do not stop people of all ages in the use of the social networks, as the percentage of people who get involved is only growing, and as a result, more and more people become interested in the virtual world more than in the real one.
Often, it is very difficult control time spent online in Twitter or Facebook, even for an adult, as there is a temptation to distract from work, from routine and to find something new and interesting, according to A face(book) in the crowd: social Searching vs. social browsing (2006). More and more adults register at the websites of the social networks, using their smart phones to have a constant access to the internet and their favorite social networks, doing that even at work. It is very difficult to change some things, and the habit of entering the social network each day will not be stopped so easily, according to Teens and social media (2009). For those who use social networks at work, they are able to communicate within the company more effectively, share essential information and ideas. To sum it up, it can be said that using social networks is indispensable and appeared many advantages that the current social networks brought to people all over the world. All that people have to do is to have a balance of the offline way of life and online, as stated in Social networking (2011).
As well, according to “Networking the Way to Success: Online Social
Networks for Workplace and Competitive Advantage”, “Today, complex human resources challenges face companies large and small, and most of these have negative impacts on employee and company communications. The advent of globalization and the prevalence of mergers and acquisitions have made it harder than ever to ensure employees in disparate locations have a consistent work experience and live through a unified corporate culture.”
All in all, it is not worth much to get involved in social networks, as they “eat” a lot of time, and the “most precious time” that people have, accessing them at work, even it is prohibited. There are certain advantages and disadvantages that can be depicted from the social networks, and people have to choose for themselves whether they want to spend hours in their social networks and live the “online” way, wasting their time at work and risking their jobs. On the other hand, many employees have to work in social networks, in order to promote the services of the company and to communicate with their clients more effectively. That is why, despite the disadvantages that social networks can bring, there are much more advantages that can help the company to become international and succeed both online and offline.