While Facebook is being banned from many workplaces, Serena Software has decided to take the opposite approach. A company-wide program called “Facebook Fridays” will encourage employees to spend one hour each Friday updating their FB profiles and creating personal connections between colleagues and clients and having ‘fun’. The initiative began on Friday November 2nd and will eventually be rolled out in 18 countries where the company has offices.
In the same week McAfee have released a report stating that one in five businesses block sites such as Facebook and MySpace, but that they expected it to be much higher because “IT managers should be well aware of the dangers”.
However, Toralv Dirro from McAfee stated:
“IT decision makers often have the difficult job of making a choice between what they know are serious security threats and other business priorities such as productivity and employee morale.” He played down the role of security software and firewalls in the debate: “The lines between work and play are blurring… but putting fair-usage policies in place and educating people on how to be safe on these sites is the most realistic option.”
So what role can social networking sites genuinely fill in a business operation, be that educational or commercial? What is your experience of social software directly connected to your work, as opposed to connected to the relationships that are part of that work – or is this the same thing? Let us know your thoughts as the Facebook debate continues!