How Much Social Media Use at Work is Too Much?

You know your employees visit their personal social media channels at work: they use either their company-supplied computer or their own mobile devices.

But from an HR or management standpoint, how much is too much? Should they look at it just on their break time? Only on their own devices?

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Now that it’s 2019 and we’re well into the world of social connectivity and media 24/7, chances are great your company and/or department already has guidelines and policies in place regarding social media usage. But there always are loopholes or guidelines/rules that just aren’t clear.

In general, if employee productivity isn’t being affected, there’s probably no need to curtail social media usage, so long as employees are following your company’s social media policy. (We’re assuming here that you have one.)

We understand that chances are good only one, two or just a few employees appear to be social obsessed, so in those cases it’s best to look at usage individually, again with an eye toward how tweeting, scrolling on Instagram and pinning on Pinterest affects – or doesn’t – each employee’s performance.

  • Generally, if it appears that social use is affecting someone’s work results and productivity, it needs to be addressed,  but not necessarily in “I see you’re on social media a lot and it’s affecting your work,” because chances are another employee is on social media just as much…but is still productive.

If that’s the case, the issue is productivity/quality of work for a particular employee and not his or her social media use, per se. Focus on the issue of productivity and ask the employee what he or she can do to be more productive/focus more.

  • If visitors to your office notice the social use, that’s something that you can – and should – address, because if you know they’ve noticed it, it’s because they mentioned it and if they’ve mentioned it chances are great that they don’t like what they are seeing.
  • Does it appear that the person is on social All. The. Time? And therefore you’re wondering how could he possibly be truly focused on work? Any manager/supervisor would wonder. This would be a time to pay more attention to not only the employee’s productivity but the quality of work he delivers.

If you do find that most of your team members seem to spend an inordinate amount of time on social media, one suggestion is to hold a meeting and mention that while productivity and work product appears to be fine, it also feels as if too many people are on social media too much.

Let your team members know that you are not judging and ask them to estimate how much time they spend on social in a day and add it up. Let’s say the amount is about three hours a day for each person. Subtracting 15 minute breaks in the morning and afternoon, the lunch period and work “lulls” that happen frequently during the day, ask them if “spending 90 minutes a day on social media when we’re not at lunch or on break is the best use of our time?”

Then, as a team, come up with solutions to lessening the amount of time spent on social media.

And, by the way, even if your team doesn’t feel that 90 minutes on social a day on the clock isn’t too much time, it’s fine – as the boss – to say it is.

When you need talented workers for a day or a year in Los Angeles and Orange counties, contact Helpmates. We can provide terrific folks for temporary, temp-to-hire and direct hire needs you have. Contact the Helpmates branch nearest you for more information.

How California’s Statewide Minimum Wage Hike is Affecting Your Temporary Workforce

It’s not news to the region’s employers that the minimum wage for California businesses with more than 26 employees increased statewide from $11/hour to $12/hour on January 1.

What’s more, Los Angeles County will be raising its minimum wage on July 1, from $13.25/hour to $14.25/hour.

What this means is that temporary workers taking assignments in Los Angeles County will be making more than $2 more an hour by mid-summer than if they were to take assignments in Orange County, where the minimum wage will remain $12/hour.

Brea staffing agency

We believe that employers in Orange County within a “reasonable” distance from Los Angeles County will lose out on top temporary workers unless they are willing to at least meet the higher minimum wages.

We’ve found that driving 60 minutes or more to make $2 or even “just” $1.25 more an hour is quite attractive to temporary workers. Long commutes are a way of life here in our region, and even taking a trip from the coast to the San Bernardino Mountains for a day is considered pretty much “nothing” to many of your friends and neighbors. (We know you agree with us, but in case you need proof…..)

Workers Making More than – But Near – Minimum Wage Also Expect a Hike

We’ve also seen that temporary workers who earned $2 or possibly as much as $3 more an hour than minimum wage before this year’s hike also expect to see an increase. If not, they will leave. So if an employer was paying a forklift driver $14/hour in December, that driver is expecting a raise to at least $15.

This expectation is particularly acute among lower-wage hourly workers (particularly those working in light industrial environments) on extended assignments (six-months or longer). Our administrative/professional associates, who already may have been making $18 or $20 or more an hour, haven’t been expecting a pay raise since the minimum wage hike.

We do, however, expect our administrative/professional associates to look for wage increases for their higher-than-minimum pay rates once the minimum wage reaches the $14 to $15 an hour area in the next year or so.

What This Means for Your Staffing Firm’s Billing Rates

We’ve found that our clients understand that a temporary agency’s employee cost doesn’t rise by $1/hour when the minimum wage increases by $1. We know they do because most of our client contacts work in human resources and understand well the costs involved in bringing on employees (as well as how using temporary staff can help keep an employers’ costs down considerably).

We also know they do because we’ve made a point of educating our clients months ago regarding how the past (and coming) wage hikes not only the temporary workforce’s pay expectations but also their staffing partners’ employee costs.

Bottom line on billing rates? Paying temporary workers $1/hour more does not mean you will be billed $1/hour more. Your bill rate will increase by an amount reasonable to cover our increased employee costs.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding how much to pay hourly for different skill sets and occupations, or if you’d like to start planning ahead for this summer’s wage increase so that your ability to continue to attract hard-to-come-by top talent, contact the branch manager at the Helpmates location nearest you.

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