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Social Networks Communications

Employees Staying Away From Internal Corporate Social Networks 131

jfruh (300774) writes As social networks proliferated in the early '10s, so did the idea of a corporate social network — a Facebook-like community on an intranet where employees could interact. Unfortunately, corporate users are staying away in droves, perceiving the systems as one more in-box they'd have to take care of and getting their social-networking fix from Facebook and the like. From what I've seen of these internal networks, another good reason is that they're not as good as the full-time social networks are, and offer access only to a small universe of particpants anyhow. They're like a central-casting "rock band" in '80s movies — they come off as conspicuously aping the real thing.
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Employees Staying Away From Internal Corporate Social Networks

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  • besides that (Score:5, Insightful)

    by roc97007 ( 608802 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @10:57AM (#47376353) Journal

    ...the whole idea of social networks is to get *away* from work....

  • Monitoring (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SYSS Mouse ( 694626 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @10:59AM (#47376369) Homepage

    You think the boss will not monitor internal corporate social network. You can place a lock in your Facebook inbox, you cannot put one in internal corporate social network.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:02AM (#47376397)

    Not only the internal "social network" are not as robust as the one outside of the company structure, the internal one also comes with another layer of worry --- that is, all the participants are workers of the SAME companies and that the BOSS are watching and listening and reading and RECORDING every bit of info

    Not that the things they are doing in FB are not being recorded (NSA, anyone?) but at the very least workers do not want their boss to know too much about themselves

  • by kick6 ( 1081615 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:04AM (#47376417) Homepage
    who get you fired for thinks you did OUTSIDE of work *cough* Brendan Eich *cough* the idea that I'm going to WILLINGLY put another bullet in these asshole's gun is preposterous. It should come as no surprise to employers who place inclusiveness and diversity as corporate goals above profit and shareholder value that no one wants to risk inadvertently being offensive on a social intranet.
  • Survey Says! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sir_Eptishous ( 873977 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:05AM (#47376435) Homepage

    Implemented properly, ESN can be beneficial, analysts say.

    Analysts say do they?
    Well, if I were an analyst whose livelihood depended on implementing and supporting ESN, I would say so to.

  • Re:Monitoring (Score:5, Insightful)

    by WhoBeDaPlaya ( 984958 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:10AM (#47376491) Homepage
    I assume anything at work is recorded/stored and can be retrieved on request. This is problematic if you have asshole coworkers and/or bosses. Better not to leave any trace. Anything I access at work is on a personal laptop tethered to my cell, or failing which, an SSH tunnel back home.
  • Unfriend (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ly4 ( 2353328 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:11AM (#47376495)
    If I 'unfriend' the guy in the next county, no big deal. If I unfriend the guy in the next cubicle, things get a bit more complicated.
  • by wcrowe ( 94389 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:14AM (#47376535)

    Why would I want everyone in the entire corporation to know everything about me? It's just like when my company invited everyone to "like" them on FB a few years ago. Yeah, right, so they can keep tabs on everything I do outside of work. Outside of payroll, or my boss, all anyone needs to know about me at work is my name, my title, and perhaps a photograph.

  • Re:besides that (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mr D from 63 ( 3395377 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:19AM (#47376603)
    Internal networks are typically set up with some goal in mind, like to "promote new ideas and enhance creative discussion". The main problem is that their existence is driven by the goal, not by demand. Employees are not asking for these tools. Employees can actually meet and talk to each other, there is typically already an infrastructure set up to support that. Therefore, employees are not getting any benefit from them.
  • by nine-times ( 778537 ) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:21AM (#47376615) Homepage

    Whenever you set off to do something like "setting up an internal corporate Intranet site", you should always be very clear about your answer to this question: "Why are we doing this?" As in, what problem are we solving? How do we actually imagine this being used?

    Lots of people will start something like this and think, "This application looks cool. It's like Facebook, but private and we can control it." And yeah, it may be fun to set up, but why are you doing it? What problem does it solve? Does it serve a purpose in disseminating information in a way that a normal website or email mailing list would be less effective? Does it aid in collaboration somehow? Once you have a clear answer, then you have to have a plan on how to get buy-in from employees. How are you going to get them to think it's a good way of accomplishing whatever it is that you hope it'll accomplish? Why should they bother with it at all? You need to convince them and then remind them to follow through.

    But none of that works if there's no purpose in the first place. Is the intention just to socialize? First, they can do that in Facebook. If they want a more professional setting, that's what LinkedIn is for. Beyond that, lots of those people are sitting in the same office building anyway, so they can meet face to face. Throw them a little cupcake party on the first Friday of every month. It'll be cheaper, and people will like it more.

  • CSN (Score:5, Insightful)

    by war4peace ( 1628283 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @11:33AM (#47376729)

    ...Or, otherwise called, Corporate Social Networks, are loathed by many employees because they're shoved down said employees' collective throat.
    It's not something attractive, but rather mandatory, and people don't like being given directions in this regard.
    Some CEO thinks it's a good idea or finds this as a new toy, and then he enforces its use, his directs roll the shit downhill and all of a sudden the cubicle dweller HAS to meet a weekly/monthly activity quota. It defies the very point of a social network.

    Of course, there are some hilarious effects that pop out:
    - A VP posts some corporate bullshit and everyone under him comes in droves and "like" that post because they wanna look good and enter said VP's graces.
    - Similarly, some douche posts some corporate BS and then begs colleagues for "likes".
    - Proper collaboration tools are ditched because CSN is today's buzz and then everything happens through the social network rather than stuff be sent through the most efficient channel.

    Not to mention that corporate social network software is badly designed, badly implemented, more often than not requiring a separate account to be created specifically for it, spamming inboxes with newsletters, assigned flags and daily digests, erroring out, eating drafts and posts, the UI is horrendous, the integration with other software is buggy as hell.

    For example, out corporate social network has an Outlook Plugin which we were told to install. More often than not, the plugin bugs out and disables paste functionality for the entire machine. It took me hours to narrow down the culprit after finding out I can't copy/paste anything anymore. So now whenever I can't paste stuff I close and re-open my Outlook, which happens too often.

    Just like Communism, it's a good idea. In theory. Only it ignores how humans work.

  • Re:besides that (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Austerity Empowers ( 669817 ) on Thursday July 03, 2014 @12:02PM (#47377099)

    Plus criticism has to be heavily censored and moderated, comments may end up being career limiting, and since there is no anonymity, the dialog usually driven by the strongest personality in the company, who likely is also driving every other damned thing to the ground. It's better not to have any such forum, or if forced upon you, to ignore it as vigorously as possible.

  • Re:besides that (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 03, 2014 @12:18PM (#47377225)

    Bingo! None of our users want to touch the damned thing that management bitched so heavily that we needed. Now it is just one more kneejerk made VM sucking away our resources.

    One of the biggest avoidances is because they think they will be handing HR information in a gift wrapped box. And they are pretty much right.

The first Rotarian was the first man to call John the Baptist "Jack." -- H.L. Mencken