It’s OK, Let Gen Y Use Social Media At Work

by Sabrina Son on Jan 6, 2015 8:00:00 AM

Gen Y using social media at workGen Y and social media. They go together like milk and cookies. Even if companies try to ban it from the workplace, it’s not going to stop these digital natives from going on these sites. So how can using social media boost competitiveness and increase productivity for Gen Y in the workplace?

Competitive Advantage

Millennials are the force that’s causing companies to change policies, work style, and culture. Since they’re predicted to make up 75% of the workforce come 2030, companies need to start thinking about how they can attract and retain this job-hopping generation.

One of the factors companies can use to entice millennials is social media freedom in the workplace.

  • 1 in 3 millennials said social media freedom is a higher priority than salary (source)

  • 56% won’t accept jobs from companies that ban social media (source)

To this generation, work isn’t a means for living. Work is a lifestyle. This hyper-connected crowd wants to work for a company that allows them to integrate their personal and professional lives. So go ahead, let them have this perk.

Digital Multitaskers

Remember when multitasking was a skill that people used to list on their resumes? Now it’s just common knowledge. According to this study, millennials can switch their attention between media platforms an average of 27 times per hour. Previous generations averaged 17 times per hour.

From smartphones to computers to Facebook, millennials can jump from one task to another without losing complete focus. If companies are worried that social media is going to make this generation less focused on their work, this data proves them wrong.

Mind Break

Again, if companies are afraid that social media will distract their employees, consider what this study by the University of Melbourne found:

  • Those who use social media at the workplace got 9% more accomplished than their social media-blocked counterparts

Think of social media as a millennials’ way of taking a breather. They can scroll through Facebook or Twitter to clear their minds (believe it or not) after a task. Taking short breaks on these sites actually help keeps this generation’s mind fresh and ready to tackle their next task.

Social media shouldn’t be a taboo at the workplace. If you’re looking to appeal to Gen Y and increase productivity (admit it, who isn't?), then consider letting your employees “like” or retweet a few posts during work hours.

 

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This post was written by Sabrina Son

Sabrina is the managing editor for the TINYpulse blog. A Seattle native, she loves her morning (or anytime) coffee, spending her weekends on the mountains, and of course, the famous rain.

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