Monday, March 2, 2009

Fear Not! Web2.0 is here to stay...

One of the single most compelling reasons for a company to undertake some research and development of their employer brand is simply to position the organisation to perform better in what is now known as the "recruitment2.0" or "web2.0" landscape.

In this world, honesty and transparency are key so only having indulged in some navel-gazing, and taken a stance in some key areas, are organisations in a position to participate in conversations about themselves as an employer in these forums.

It is a fact that "the crowd controls the message" now and HR are indeed correct to have reservations about this but if you choose to stake no claims of your own, or worse, continue to use the white-lies of yesteryear, then you are genuinely and completely at the mercy of the crowd – and this, it seems to me, should be even more of a concern!

The following article from CIPD picks up on the concerns of HR in general when presented with the reality and opportunities of a web2.0 world.


Avoid ‘Facebook fear factor’, CIPD tells HR

A new CIPD report finds that HR is failing to take advantages of "the many opportunities presented by Web 2.0 technology." The report suggests that the potential benefits of this technology are being overlooked because of fears about potential employee misbehaviour and a reluctance to lose control over its use. It warns that HR faces losing out on the possibility of playing an important role in guiding the adoption of Web 2.0 to enhance organisational and business performance.

The report (‘Web 2.0 and Human Resource Management: ‘Groundswell' or hype?') lays out a systems framework to help HR professionals think about how web-based content (in the form of texts, videos, opinions and other applications) can be transferred - through new Web 2.0 social media technologies - into important HR outputs. As well as offering clear guidance about Web 2.0, it cites a number of case-studies illustrating how organisations can reap the benefits of these technologies (in areas such as collaboration, learning & development, employer branding and engagement) while simultaneously mitigating the risk of employee abuse.

CIPD organisation & resourcing adviser Vanessa Robinson says "Web 2.0 provides employees with new tools for collaboration and knowledge-sharing. Its open, democratic nature, however, has meant that many HR professionals are focusing on the negative side, which is a shame as Web 2.0 is here to stay.

"HR is in danger of playing catch-up as a profession in failing to advance the interests of organisations by navigating them through the undoubted benefits. As well as limiting potential abuse by carefully selecting the technology used, HR professionals must develop and communicate clear and well-informed policies to help employees understand what behaviour is acceptable and what is clearly not.

"Organisations will be increasingly faced with employees seeking to use Web 2.0 social media technologies at work, so rather than ignore them or ban them outright they will need to adopt sensible policies that fit a particular context. There are no one-size-fits all policies because contexts differ, which is evident from our research and case studies."

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