HR and Our Social Media Due Diligence

Last week, I attended the Oklahoma State Human Resource Conference as an attendee and speaker. My topic of choice was Social Media and how it can be successfully leveraged as a business, as well as for recruiting, and also a marketing tool. By more than a handful of human resource professionals, I was dubbed “the Twitter Girl,” a more than all too familiar name I’ve been called.

During the conference I engaged in a number of conversations surrounding the use, success, understanding and safety surrounding Social Media. I received more than a few open mouthed stares, comments, and questions like-

  • How can I use this tool called Tweeter?
  • I really don’t have time to spend hours on FaceBook. How is this beneficial?
  • Can someone gain access to my all my personal information and find my home address on MySpace?
  • I’m over 30. I don’t do Twitter.
  • This sounds like something for marketing. Can I have them contact you for questions?

What really hit home for me at the conference was that I was the lone human resource blogger of the more than 400 attendees at the State HR Conference and that my beliefs and acceptance of Social Media as a way to engage and develop relationships with employees, candidates, and customers are a very new and foreign idea to those within the Human Resource Industry.

How can the 17 million unique users who logged onto Twitter in April be wrong or the 3.37 million mentions Starbucks had on Twitter in a three day period be something that can be casually overlooked? Social Media is a free resource in which businesses and human resource professionals can use to build relationships and develop a brand, realistically cut their advertising and recruiting expenses between 20-50%. And most businesses I have spoken within the past six months, are always interested in cutting overhead and expenses.

I urge all human resource professionals to get out there and do your due diligence and bring an open minded attitude when considering Online Social Media Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and others. Isn’t it our responsibility as progressive HR professionals who desire the coveted seat at the table to take advantage of learning about new resources and opportunities and these sharing with our business leaders as a way to further strengthen our business and also gain crediability?

How amazing would it be to flex your strategic business muscles by benefiting your company’s bottom line in a way other than outsourcing payroll, suspending your 401(k), or exit interview process? How’s that for job security?

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell

Jessica Miller-Merrell (@jmillermerrell) is a workplace change agent, author and consultant focused on human resources and talent acquisition living in Austin, TX. Recognized by Forbes as a top 50 social media influencer and is a global speaker. She’s the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource and host of the Workology Podcast.

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