Study: Ban Social Media, Get Lower Quality Workers

By now, most companies have some sort of workable — and hopefully realistic — social media policy for their office. But a new study from Cisco indicates that if you’re considering banning employee access at work, you may be reducing the quality of your workforce. Ragan relays:

To demonstrate the role of the network in young people’s lives, Cisco commissioned an international workforce study of nearly 3,000 college students and recently employed college graduates, many working in their first full-time jobs.

Here are the findings I find most interesting:

  • More than two out of five would accept a lower-paying job that offered more choices in the device they use at work, social media access, and mobility compared with a higher-paying job with less flexibility.  
  • One in three college students and young professionals consider the Internet to be as important as air, water, food and shelter.
  • For several years, whenever I speak with college students, I tell them that if a prospective employer bans social media, resist working there. I tell them to ask about social networking at the office. If it is banned or restricted, stand up, thank the interviewer and leave because they will not be happy there.

Do you trust your employees?

Guess what? When companies ban social networking, the best employees leave. They sense they are not trusted. Those who reluctantly stay go into the restroom or outside the office with their iPhone or Android to get onto Facebook and Twitter.