Relating social networking only to things that happen outside the workplace ignores one of the commonest uses of social networking: an extension of the “watercooler” conversation to people who can’t stop by the same watercooler as others and chat because they’re elsewhere.
Very few companies do not and would not work better when employees know each other well enough to chat. Sometimes the talk will be about non-work-related matters but it will often be a discussion of what needs to be done and how best to do it. Social networking can be the most effective way of spreading best practice around a company or organisation.
The term frequently used to describe social networking in an organisation is enterprise social networking (ESN).
Anything that helps members of a company or organisation communicate with each other is going to improve the way the company operates but changes in culture may be required. The fact is that not everyone communicates easily or willingly and it may be necessary to encourage them to do so. To put it bluntly: giving people the means to cooperate does not mean that they will do so. If they don’t, the reasons need to be explored. Sometimes they will be as simple as a natural resistance to change but there may be occasions when something deeper is involved.
There may also be a need for training. It’s easy to assume in 2015 that everyone uses Facebook. Easy, but not necessarily correct. And some of the habits that people who do use social networking regularly have picked up may not be helpful. An organisation intending to introduce a social network for employees would be wise to spend time on teaching them how it is supposed to work and what they should do with it – and also what they should not do.
Whatever decision you make, Blendapps will help you make it happen by taking the technical difficulties out of constructing a social network.