Workers are cautious about following colleagues (pic: Terry Murden)
Social media is perhaps not so social when it comes to linking up with work colleagues. Forty per cent of workers say they will never add their colleagues as friends on to their social media accounts.
A survey of 1,000 Brits about their social media etiquette at work revealed that workers were the most reluctant to add colleagues on Snapchat, with over half (51%) admitting they never would, closely followed by Twitter (43%).
At the other end of the scale, they are most willing to add new co-workers on Facebook, with less than a quarter (24%) choosing never to send a friend request to their colleagues.
Notably, male workers are considerably more reluctant to connect online with people from their office. Nearly half (48%) of male workers will never add a new member of staff on any form of social media, compared to just over a third (35%) of women.
Instagram is where the genders differ most, with women being 16% more likely to follow a new colleague than men.
The survey by tech retailer Ebuyer found that the use of social media during the working day is growing increasingly common, with the ease of access providing a constant temptation. However, many Brits (27%) believe that social media should not be accessed on company time at all.
An increasing number of companies are now researching candidates’ social media behaviour prior to interviewing them.
More than four in five (82%) British employers admit to including this sort of investigation in their vetting process for new employees.
Lee Weymouth, commercial director at Ebuyer, commented: “The reach and draw of social media is now greater than ever. With social media being such a powerful tool in helping us connect with new people, it is interesting to see such a high proportion of people reluctant to do so with co-workers. This could be for privacy reasons or an attempt to keep their work and personal lives separate.
“However, it is unsurprising to see that many Brits want to stop people from accessing their social media at work. If colleagues are spending considerable amounts of time on social media, this can have an impact on productivity and therefore the performance of both the individual and the wider business.”