Getting onto graduate schemes: a guide to phone interviews

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Grad scheme tipster, Hannah Salton recalls a series of disastrous phone interviews and urges all candidates to be super prepared

 

n my previous blogpost, I talked about the research I did when applying for the BT graduate scheme. This time I’ll be focusing on the next stage of the application process I went through.

This part of the process wasn’t all plain sailing for me. After I’d done my initial application for BT, I was asked to complete numerical and language tests online. While I found the English language task fairly straightforward, having studied A-level English literature, I didn’t have enough time to complete the maths test. Maths has never been my strongest point, and I have to confess to having a rocky relationship with numbers.

Unsurprisingly, I had a bit of a panic that I hadn’t completed the whole test. I knew I should have listened to my dad and concentrated in GCSE maths. However, despite my worry, it seems it’s better to be relatively thorough and complete what you can correctly rather than rushing through all the questions and guessing (probably incorrectly in a state of panic) many answers. I only ended up completing around two thirds of my online maths test, but as I did that carefully and methodically, I was ecstatic to hear I’d got through to the next round; a phone interview.

Not being very technologically minded, I’ve always tried to prepare for the unexpected, and learnt to realise that whatever can go wrong, often will go wrong with technology. A short while before my phone interview with BT, I had another one with a different company. In preparation, I had my mobile phone fully charged, and assessed my entire room before the call to ensure optimum signal at my desk. Incidentally I’d never had a problem with phone reception before, but I was being overly cautious. I waited patiently by my phone for the interviewer to ring, and answered quickly when they did so.

The phone interview seemed to be going well, until halfway through when I lost all signal on my phone. After uttering my apologies, I managed to find a spot sitting on top of my wardrobe (not necessarily the best look for a young professional) leaning towards the window. I completed the phone interview OK, if a little stressed. Needless to say, I never had problems with the reception in my room again. But for my phone interview with BT, I had learnt my lesson. I had smugly booked out a room in the university library, just for me, to conduct my interview in. The study room was private and enclosed, and as I settled down with my notes (very important) I felt very proud of my forward thinking.

The great thing about phone interviews is you can relax in your own environment (phone reception permitting), and have as many handy notes as you like. I found having my CV to hand with a few key points about your skills and situational example answers can be really helpful. I did try and keep my notes simple and easily laid out though; the last thing you want to be doing is flicking through rustling paper, umming and arring as you try to find the answer to why you are a great team player.

Some of the questions included giving an example of a time I have demonstrated leadership, responded well to a challenge and been flexible in adapting to change. For my phone interviews, I printed off my CV and annotated it with different skills I thought I could be asked about, allocating them to different achievements on my CV. For example, I used my numerous group presentations and projects at university to demonstrate my ability to team work, and so on. One project in particular I found useful to discuss was a retail marketing module where I worked with a group to launch our own fictitious clothes line. Our team was allocated different roles such as marketing, finance and commercial specialist, and put in simulated market situations which we had to respond to.

I didn’t think it is a good idea to sound too rehearsed on calls, like a robot reading cliched lines, but sometimes having one or two examples can be reassuring when you’re asked the dreaded “what’s your biggest weakness?” (note: I came to find that saying you’re a perfectionist is apparently a bit over used – and opted for “I take on too much work and sometimes find it hard to say no to people” instead).

I think it’s important to try and relax and let your personality show in phone interviews. At BT you’re encouraged to be yourself, and even though it can be hard when you’re getting grilled, I think it’s better for a company to know what you’re like upfront as there’s only so long you can pretend to be someone you’re not.

As I mentioned before, keen to avoid another phone-signal dilemma, for the day of my BT phone interview I booked a library study room. But I hadn’t counted on a group of six international students setting up camp outside (loudly) brainstorming ideas for their group project. Even after I politely asked them to keep it down, the quiet hum of their energetic chatter couldn’t help but distract me. As it turns out, it didn’t matter in the end, as I managed to pass through to the next round.

But my advice? Anything that can go wrong often will go wrong, so always prepare as well as you can in advance for all kind of questions and unexpected situations. Especially enthusiastic exchange students.

 

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Jobless young people without basic skills told to learn or lose benefits

Jobless young people without basic skills told to learn or lose benefits

Unemployed 18 to 21-year-olds without basic maths and English will only get benefits if they undergo 16 hours of training a week
  • Rowena Mason and Patrick Wintour
  • The Guardian, 

Unemployed teenagers who leave school without basic English and maths will be forced to go back to the classroom for 16 hours a week or lose their benefits under new rules announced by George Osborne.

The chancellor said he wanted to get rid of a “culture of worklessness” among some school-leavers, as he unveiled a package of measures to get some of Britain’s one million unemployed young people into jobs.

Among the changes, Osborne said he would gave a tax break to companies that hire under-21s, create another 20,000 apprenticeships, fund more training for 16 to 17-year-olds and bring in elements of an “earn or learn” system to stop 18-year-olds going straight on to the dole.

The principles of “earn or learn” have been hotly debated within the coalition, after David Cameron used his conference speech in October to float the idea of taking away housing benefit and jobseeker’s allowance from under-25s who were not in work or training.

The Liberal Democrats have not agreed to all those ideas but appear to have relented on some elements of “earn or learn”, as Osborne announced that 18 to 21-year-olds without basic skills would only get their benefit if they undergo 16 hours of training a week.

On top of this, all 18 to 21-year-olds who are unemployed for more than six months will have to undertake compulsory work experience, a traineeship or a full-time community work placement.

The measures appear to be an extension of the government’s controversial “workfare” schemes – or mandatory work activity – where jobseekers are forced to go on a month of work experience in order to qualify for their benefits.

Senior Lib Dem sources said the policy had been significantly watered down by Clegg’s party and agreed on the condition it will only be rolled out in pilot areas.

In his speech, Osborne said the government “will not abandon those who leave school with few or no qualifications”.

“Without basic maths or English, there is a limited chance any young person will be able to stay off welfare,” he said. “Starting in some areas at first, anyone aged 18 to 21 signing on without these basic skills will be required to undertake training from day one or lose their benefits.

“If they are still unemployed after six months, they will have to start a traineeship, take work experience or do a community work placement – and if they don’t turn up, they will lose their benefits.

“A culture of worklessness becomes entrenched when young people can leave school and go straight onto the dole, with nothing expected in return. That option is coming to an end in our welfare system.”

The Social Market Foundation thinktank said the new policy should help young people in spite of Osborne’s tough rhetoric designed to appeal to the right about cracking down on their “worklessness”.

Its director, Emran Mian, said: “Getting young people without qualifications to go into training is very much a sheep in wolves’ clothing. Despite being couched in the rhetoric of a benefits clampdown, it is a sensible policy that could improve people’s skills and employability.”

Osborne also said the job market for young people would be given a further boost by scrapping National Insurance contributions for companies when they hire under-21s.

This move is the second policy designed to encourage firms to take on young people, on top of the struggling £1bn Youth Contract programme championed by Nick Clegg, the deputy prime minister.

That scheme offers businesses a subsidy of up to £2,275 for taking on a young person who has been out of work for at least six months but figures released earlier this year showed it had only helped 4,700 in its first year out of its target of around 50,000.

Getting rid of National Insurance for hiring under-21s will provide a further incentive, effectively meaning an employer could hire two young people for the price of a 50-year-old, according to Sian Steele, a partner at accountancy firm PwC.

“Dissolving employment taxes for under-21-year-olds is a welcome and sensible move to get employers to give jobs to young people,” she said. “The worry for older workers is that it makes them less attractive in real cost terms.”

 

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How to be a shoo-in for a job

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Interviews will become a thing of the past when your reputation has firms queuing up to hire you, says Clare Whitmell

Some people never ‘apply’ for jobs, but are approached directly. But it’s not luck that generates these opportunities, it’s the reputation you’ve built with industry peers who are happy to recommend you. Here’s how you can turn your CV into a mere formality.

Be recognised for your work

Whether you’re a top sales person with a string of impressive results, or the “go-to” tech person who keeps the intranet running, you need to be known for something. Specialise (rather than generalise) and develop the crucial attributes valued by employers: a can-do attitude, ability to communicate and work across cultures, and strong problem-solving skills.

Keep a record of your successes in each role, quantifying where possible in terms of bottom-line impact. Regularly update company managers on what – and how – you’re doing, to increase your visibility and influence salary and promotion negotiations.

Build an industry-wide reputation

In a live Q&A on new year career resolutions, Deborah Simmons quoted some interesting research on career success. “Doing the job well” has less of an impact than “relationship with others”. But by far the biggest factor (at 60%) is “reputation/exposure”.

Meet influential people at industry events such as conferences or presentations. Increase your exposure by offering to speak or present at events, and getting quoted in trade journals or publishing white papers.

Build relationships with key figures, thought-leaders and specialist recruiters who can refer you to others, including those with hiring authority. Personal referrals are among the easiest ways to get a job.

Be visible online

As recruiters and hiring managers increasingly use Google and LinkedIn to source (and ‘screen’) candidates, an active online presence is no longer optional.

Social media is very much a level playing field. It’s easy to build contacts through participating in online forums and Twitter conversations, and by thoughtful and useful comments on blogs and LinkedIn group discussions. Maintaining an industry-related blog also enhances your professional reputation and can lead to further opportunities, such as guest-blogging and conference participation – as well as job leads.

The transparency of social media can also work against you. Aim for quality over quantity of output, and be known as someone who provides value.

Non-participation in social media may leave you sidelined. Recently released statistics show that people of all ages are active online, with 152 million blogs, and 200 million people on Twitter. Measurement tools (such as the Klout score, which aims to calculate your online influence) may become another stage in the hiring process, as decision-makers try to assess the professional reputation of a potential candidate.

Be choosy

Don’t tarnish your credibility by lunging at any job that comes along. Roles that don’t offer career-building challenges are unlikely to keep your interest for long, and a job-hopper label will damage your reputation.

Understand the trends

Know what’s happening in your industry. Where are the growth and opportunity areas? Where is your next role likely to be, and what skills will you need for it? Keeping current will help you plan your next move strategically.

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Twitter Job Challenge: Can you catch an employer’s attention using Twitter?

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You’re probably already spending/wasting time on Twitter. So why not combine it with looking for work in our #twitterjobchallenge?

Via Twitter, lots of you have been asking us “what’s this#twitterjobchallenge, then?” Allow me to explain.

But first, a little context. It all started when the Careers team was sat around engaged in deep discussion about the theme for our nextCareers Talk podcast.

“Desirability of the public sector, despite cuts?”

“Nah”

“Jobseeking on Twitter.”

“Oooh, yeah.”

The Twitter idea was actually inspired by Ulrike Schulz’s recent blog, Can Twitter help me land my dream job? We decided we wanted to explore, in more detail, just how good Twitter was for looking for work and creating job opportunities, in what podcast that will be coming soon calls ‘how to use Twitter to find a job’.

But, first we had to think about the conflicting evidence of how effective Twitter really is when it comes to careers. Because, while Ulrike plugs away admirably, using Twitter to put herself in front of employers and immerse herself in her chosen industry of advertising (with some impressive success, I must say), a survey has just been released that suggests social media job-seeking might not work for everyone.

Research from recruitment consultancy Robert Half claims “social media is a fail whale for recruitment”.

The survey found that 52% of chief financial officers said their companies have not used any social media for recruiting.

But, as discussed in our recent podcast, we’re not entirely convinced that chief financial officers are the ones plugging away in the HR departments. Plus, there’s still that remaining 48% that do use social media to target people.

It was at this point that my colleague Harriet Minter had a brainwave and the #twitterjobchallenge was born.

Her idea was to to use Twitter to find out which employers are really paying attention to jobseekers on social media and involve graduates in the process.

So we started by asking our esteemed graduate blogger Sara Barnard to take the challenge.

All she had to do was:

• Pick five employers

• Use Twitter to convince them to give her a job

• Tell us who responded and how she did it

Then we opened it out to our followers, and anyone else who happened across it on Twitter.

We’ve just set @saramegan a #TwitterJobChallenge: Try to convince your top five employers to give you a job using Twitter. Want to play too?

Actually, although I’ve used 400-odd words to explain it, that’s it. Try to convince an employer, your top employer if you like, to give you a job using Twitter. And share your experiences with us, of course.

You can also keep up with how the challenge develops by signing up for our weekly newsletter. We’ll be posting updates via that too.

Good luck.

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You’ve been Googled: what employers don’t want to see in your online profile

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Before an interview, you’ve done your research on a company. But it’s also important to research what they might have found out about you online too
  • Professor Cary Cooper
  • theguardian.com, 

What are recruiters looking for when they conduct online searches on individuals before deciding whether to offer them interviews? Evidence of involvement in business networks and community projects? Examples of success at work, college or on the sports field? Or are they simply trying to tool themselves with a few choice examples from dodgy websites that will do nothing but cause discomfort for an already nervous candidate?

So, what will employers want to find, and what will put them off? Luci Baldwin, IPC Media resourcing and recruitment manager, says anything constructive and positive will work in a candidate’s favour. “Evidence of involvement in community activities, a presence on a business network such as LinkedIn, and anything to demonstrate good communication skills are key attributes we look for,” she said.

“Written material should be positive and error-free. So much the better if there is evidence of teamwork, or an account of some really special project a candidate has been involved with. Anything constructive and memorable can go a long way to supporting an individual application.”

And what about the bad stuff? Shuvo Loha, director of headhunting specialists Janikin Rooke, starts simply. “It would worry me to find negative remarks about a person or from them,” he says.

“So much of what we do is documented somewhere online nowadays people have to be very careful. What seemed like a funny photo from university could end up costing you a job or an interview without you even knowing. Evidence of a negative or bad attitude, revealed through too much complaining or ranting, would put me off, as would anything that suggests a candidate is intolerant or extreme in opinion. Bad mouthing other people, especially employers, is out, as is anything that exaggerates or is too self-promotional.”

Luci and Shuvo offer sound advice. After all, the truth is that good interviewers, like good candidates, take time to do some research on the person or people they are planning to meet. Research by ExecuNet showed that 77% of recruiters said they used search engines to find background data on candidates. Additionally, 35% admitted they eliminated a candidate because of what they found online.

The same survey quizzed job candidates, too. It found that 82% expected recruiters to check out their names on a search engine, yet only 33% bothered to search for information on themselves, to see what their prospective employer might find out.

In conclusion, it pays to be a little circumspect about what you contribute to the web, and where your contribution is placed. And since it’s tricky to take back any words you might later regret, then do expect questions in an interview, and think hard about how you will explain yourself. That in its own right will earn you valuable points.

Whatever you do, don’t get into the position one candidate found himself in. He was at an interview, facing a panel of senior executives. The CEO began the interview by stating, deadpan: “Yes, you ARE stunningly gorgeous.” Completely wrong-footed by this bizarre opening to the interview, the candidate failed to recover his composure and the encounter went from bad to worse. Eventually, the penny dropped that the CEO had done a search on the candidate and found the bold assertion on his Facebook page that he was ‘stunningly gorgeous’. The candidate’s failure to do a mental mop-up of his own cyberspace contributed to his failure on this particular occasion.

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LinkedIn and how to use it: a graduate job seeker’s guide

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Creating a LinkedIn profile enables you to build a network and gain access to industry insiders. Clare Whitmell reveals her step by step guide to getting started, and making the most of your profile
  • Clare Whitmell
  • theguardian.com, 

LinkedIn offers much more than job listings. It enables you to build a network and gain access to industry insiders. It’s also the easiest way to create a professional identity online, as a LinkedIn profile appears among the first results when your name is googled. And with the option to add files, presentations and updates, your profile can become a more dynamic version of your CV.

Getting started

Your first step is to create your profile. Aim for 100% completion so you show up in more searches. To do this, you’ll need to include your educational history, current position and three recent ones, upload a photo, write a summary and then get three recommendations.

The settings tab (underneath your name in the top right hand corner) allows you to change things like privacy settings. You can edit your profile any time, add updates or applications, or rearrange the sections of your profile by clicking on the section header, then dragging it to its new location.

Tips

Use the headline under your name to reflect your career goals – not necessarily your current job title.

Claim your name on your LinkedIn url (from the edit button next to Public Profile).

Use keywords in your summary and experience sections. Be specific about responsibilities, achievements and educational experience.

Don’t be too formal. Inject some personality into your summary section by writing in the first person and giving an idea of your interests and goals.

Making contacts

LinkedIn suggests names based on your work history or mutual contacts. You can also invite people to connect by using the contacts tab on the top of the page to search through past or present colleagues and university (alumni) contacts, or through importing your email address book.

Groups

Joining and participating in groups raises your profile and expands your network. LinkedIn suggests relevant groups, but you can also search or create your own. To help you decide the usefulness of a group, check the group statistics feature, which gives information about demographics, growth and activity. Group membership has obvious benefits: you can invite other members to connect, view jobs which might not be posted elsewhere, and stay up-to-date with industry trends by reading and taking part in discussions.

Company pages and job opportunities

Use the navigation bar to find companies you’re interested in, then follow them to receive their updates. You can see if any of your contacts work at the company – useful if you need an introduction or information you wouldn’t normally get from a job description or company website.

A dedicated jobs portal for students and graduates allows you to refine your search by sector and location.

You can also find opportunities (through the “jobs you may be interested in” feature or through a search) and be found by companies and recruiters.

Use the applications

Show off your expertise by embedding your blog, adding a file (such as your CV) via the box application, or including a slideshare presentation. Keep your profile active with updates or by integrating your LinkedIn updates with Twitter (you’ll need to add your Twitter account, then decide what – if anything – you want to merge).

Stay up-to-date

LinkedIn is constantly rolling out new developments; a recent one being the skills feature (accessed under the ‘More’ tab) which allows you to include crucial keywords. Other additions particularly relevant for grads are the new profile sections designed to highlight university achievements. These include projects, awards, organisations, courses and test scores and you’ll find them from the “add sections” bar immediately under the main profile.

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My Twitter job hunt success story: I’m employed!

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Since March, graduate Ulrike Schulz has been using Twitter to find a job in London. Last month she landed her dream social media role at We Are Social. Here, she reveals how she did it

It’s December and I’m in London, employed. The year 2011 is almost over and so is my Twitter project – looking for a job via my@TheLondonJob account.

After the first notice of having an interview in London in July I immediately booked a flight to my dream city. I got this interview through Matt O’Shea, a digital strategist at the creative agency Public in Shoreditch. He sent my CV to his managers at Public after I contacted him on Twitter. My application was successful and they invited me in for an interview. I was offered a six-week paid internship, which I started on 28 September. As I didn’t know if I would be hired me after the internship, I kept looking for contacts on Twitter.

During my internship I met Mat Morrison, head of social media at Starcom MediaVest.

At the event, Mat introduced me to people who work in social media and I enjoyed the night chatting not only about my job hunt but also about general topics like social media or life, and also giving away my business cards.

On another occasion, I met Rob Mosley from Nonsense, a digital agency. I also contacted him on Twitter, asking for some help and to see if there were any vacancies at Nonsense. He was really interested in what I had to say and although he wasn’t able to offer me a job, he promised to send out a note to people he knew. I was not disappointed. I had two agencies ask me for an interview. I had started my internship at Public, researching on social media and writing blogs for the company’s website, when I had the other two interviews, but was told that I didn’t have enough experience.

When I came to London the first person I met was Mauricio Samayoa, who is a former We Are Social account manager. That was the first time I heard about this agency. The second time, I encountered We Are Social was with Mat Morrison who introduced me to Robin Grant, MD of We Are Social. It didn’t lead me immediately to a job but, looking back, it was part of what I like to call my career destiny.

It happened that We Are Social was looking for a German account executive and Grant remembered me. He invited me to an interview.Steve Ward, a social media and digital recruiter, who I met as well before, told me about the job at the same time.

I just had the feeling the job was meant to be my dream job because wherever I went in London there was always the talk of We Are Social from different people. In the job I could use my German skills, connect with people via social media, and live my creative and communicative side within account management. After the interviews, I was even more convinced of it – the whole atmosphere in the office was really great.

My first interview was with Melina Hägglund, an account manager. I didn’t feel any pressure in the interview because Melina seemed to be easygoing. But the interview was really about what experience I have, why I like social media and so on – and I had lots to say about that!

After the interview with her I talked to Jordan Stone, the account director of the team I would work with. He made me feel comfortable as well. It just didn’t feel in an interview anymore, although I took the interview very serious. They told me that I will be responsible for the German Facebook page of their client and they expect something big next year (no more details about that – it’s a secret).

Two days before finishing my internship for Public, I got a call from We Are Social and was offered the job as account executive. This was by far one of the happiest moments in my life. I live in London and I found my dream job. I’ve completed my first couple of weeks at We Are Social; I love the team and I can’t wait to take the daily challenges in social media.

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Why social networkers are more likely to get ahead at work

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Mamta Saha explores the career-boosting behaviours that help those active on social networks to get ahead in their jobs

A recent Google project on how social tools are used in business showed how those embracing them at work are more likely to get promoted than those who don’t. The research found 86% of frequent users said they have recently been promoted and 72% said they are likely to be promoted, compared to 61% and 39% of non-users. The report - How social technologies drive business success - hails these workers as ‘the new social climbers’, because they know how to embrace the tools in the right way to get ahead.

In reality, there are a number of reasons why social networkers are more likely to progress in their career and it appears that the most successful, visionary companies are already acknowledging the benefits of these tools to make it easy to connect and work together online. According to the Google research, high growth companies are most likely to use social tools.

There are a number of ways in which social tools can help with career progression:

Showcasing depth of knowledge

When social tools first appeared they were used by introvert individuals who embraced blogs, answered questions on forums and understood their potential as an outlet for sharing knowledge and exchanging views. This helped them get noticed for their depth of knowledge. In a professional situation, in-depth authority on a relevant topic is extremely attractive to employers and helps to get introverts noticed and promoted without the need for active self-promotion.

Making connections

Those embracing social networking in the workplace have recognised its potential to broaden their circle of contacts, which can lead to all sorts of useful business connections. Building a network of contacts also offers an effective means of problem solving, giving access to a wider panel of individuals with different areas of expertise, whose knowledge can be tapped into to help solve problems and give advice on unfamiliar situations.

A balance of professional and personal

The most successful social networkers tend to be those who filter personal information to build their own ‘brand’, including their skillset, experience and connections. That said, individual touches such as occasional updates on hobbies and interests can also lead to more meaningful connections with all kinds of influential people. In Google +, for instance, these contacts with similar interests can be grouped together, making it easier to ensure that your updates and requests are relevant to those receiving them.

Bringing in new insights

Another great opportunity for using social tools to excel comes in using them to learn about your organisation. Many companies have already established a network or blog and are using these channels to provide information about staff skills, company news and initiatives so taking an interest in these forums and communities can be very informative. Usingsocial media to track company references is also a good idea. For instance, if a story about your company breaks on Twitter, and you are the first to spot it this shows senior staff you are taking an interest in the company.

Time management and productivity benefits

Today’s ‘social climbers’ are also using these tools to help them work smarter. Most of us are familiar with being bombarded with emails that we don’t have time to read and being pulled into meetings that seem to last longer than necessary. Through thinking creatively about what social tools could do, you can change these time-draining practices in your company. Instant messaging, can be a time saver when you want an answer to a question quickly. Collaborative documents edited online by multiple people could replace meetings. It is only through embracing change and trying out different tools that you will learn these shortcuts for yourself and be seen as a more efficient member of the team.

Driven individuals are likely to grasp any opportunity that come their way to make themselves more successful. Social tools offers such opportunities.

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Facebook your boss: using social media in internal communications

woman looking at Facebook in office

 

 

Do you go on Facebook at work? New research shows that employers could be missing a trick when it comes to social media and internal communications

It’s a well-known fact that more than 1 billion people use Facebook regularly, but what’s less well-known is the opportunity social mediapresents to boost our careers. Many organisations‘ social media strategies have been outward-looking, focusing on customers and peers and neglecting an important audience – their own people.

Our latest research shows that there is a clear opportunity for social media to be used more for internal communications and organisational development programmes.

In a survey of more than 1,500 people, we found that employees wanted to engage more with senior teams via social media channels: 42% would be happy to talk with their line manager or team leader over Facebook, and a fifth would even be content tweeting the head of department or chief executive. Likewise, nearly 40% of managers would be happy to reciprocate.

There was also a glimmer of willingness from employees to share information about their organisation on their personal social networks. Nearly a fifth would share company news if they thought friends and family might be interested.

Harnessing this interest could have significant benefits for organisations, enhancing internal communications and creating opportunities for innovation and knowledge sharing. Yet two thirds of employees have no involvement in their company’s social media activity and more than a quarter are not permitted to access these networks at work. HR departments will have a task on their hands if they want to persuade management to engage with employees in this way.

Examples of success do exist. Deloitte, for instance, showed the value of investing in social media engagement to unlock the potential of its workforce during the Olympics. The winners of an employee blogging competition were sent to the Games to represent Deloitte and share their experience publicly over social media and on internal networking platforms.

The success of this initiative – and others – demonstrates the impact that embedding social media into broader engagement activity can have. By focusing time and energy on such projects, companies can help employees build relationships, share knowledge and collaborate, creating a workforce that is motivated and connected.

Of course, having multiple channels where employees can engage with one another and share information about work has to be monitored and necessary precautions taken. Suitable forums for employee communications, for example, should be established where sensitive issues can be taken offline through appropriate HR channels.

But, implemented effectively, social media can be a highly successful internal engagement and communication tool, generating ideas across teams and departments.

As digital natives enter the workforce, investment in social media for internal communications and as a tool for information dissemination needs to expand if companies want to get the most from their employees, encourage innovation and foster brand promotion at all levels.

 

 

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