Social media has gained a hugely important role in nearly every possible facet of people’s lives, including employment and work. Thus, a new trend in HR has been created, suggesting that social media can be used to announce employment-related decisions, including hiring and firing ones (Albert, Da Silva, & Aggarwal, 2019). Despite the usefulness and numerous advantages of social media, the proposed way of managing HR issues, namely, employing or dismissing people, appears to have multiple problems, which means that a specific etiquette needs to be developed before using the proposed tools in modern business settings.
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Having evolved tremendously over the past decade, social media has provided ample and endlessly impressive opportunities for communication. Two of the critical advantages that social media offers in dispersing hiring and firing messages are the speed of data processing and the opportunity to address multiple participants simultaneously (Katiyar & Saini, 2016). As a result, an HR manager can handle the issues of recruitment and dismissal more effectively, which is crucial in companies with a large number of employees and high turnover rates.
Moreover, social media can be useful specifically when making hiring decisions since it offers additional information about the candidate. The level of their activity on a social network, the interests that they pursue, and the range of social connections that they have made will supply essential information to HR managers (Khorsheed, Othman, & Sadq, 2020). Namely, the communication skills of the candidate and the prospects for their future talent management process can be identified.
When considering one of the most important characteristics of communication in the social media context, the presence of certain distancing and the absence of close interpersonal communication, which is essential in preserving good relationships between an employee and an employer, is absent from the environment of social media (Thornthwaite, 2018). The air of coldness and the sense of being distanced from an interloper contributes to the effect, amplifying it to a significant degree. Another important disadvantage of social media as an HR tool is the absence of a well-developed communication etiquette and the resulting high probability of employees misreading the information sent to them by HR managers (Jacobson & Gruzd, 2020). The specified effect is especially plausible in firing decisions, when, being fuelled by emotions, dismissed staff members may ascribe certain intentions to a seemingly innocent message.
Finally, since social media is traditionally used for casual communication, HR managers and employees are likely to find it excessively difficult to separate their everyday communication from work-related on when using social media. As a result, a range of unnecessary attitudes is likely to emerge, complicating workplace relationships (Richter et al., 2018). The described disadvantage is also linked to the problem of bad publicity, which means that controversial incidents may result in the complete loss of employment opportunities for people who may have been misunderstood or misinterpreted.
Since social media is known for its impeccable functionality and the options for delivering important messages promptly, it can be used as a hiring or firing instrument in the future as long as ethical standards for the specified procedures are introduced beforehand. Due to the lack of coherent guidelines for using social media in hiring decisions and dismissal of employees, the identified device may turn out to be inefficient for organizations with an established HRM-related routine. Therefore, currently, the application of social media for hiring and firing staff members does not seem to be effective enough. Despite the numerous options and advantages that social media provides, it may imply unfair decision-making. Thus, it needs to be discarded in favor of a more traditional approach toward hiring and firing staff.
When crafting the argument concerning the use of social media in making HRM-related decisions, I found several issues to be of quite high importance. These included the search for reliable and accurate evidence and the assessment of the relationships between social media and HRM processes, namely, recruitment and dismissal of the staff. It was necessary to view the intricate details of relationships between the HR function and the information offered by social media to produce an adequate and honest answer to the essay question.
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In addition, constructing the argument above has shaped my view on what forming an argument means. Namely, I realized that, when developing an argument, it is important not to insist on proving a particular point but, instead, to evaluate the situation carefully and represent it objectively. The described approach is especially valuable when researching an issue as contentious as the use of social media in HRM.
To convey the main message in my essay, I plan to use three key elements of rhetoric, namely, ethos, pathos, and logos, accordingly. Ethos will be used to represent the problem fairly and objectively so that readers could make their own decisions about the subject matter. Pathos will be incorporated to a certain extent when outlining some of the ethically questionable aspects of using social media in HRM. Finally, logos will be utilized to create a coherent message and allow the audience to understand the core of the argument.
Albert, L. J., Da Silva, N., & Aggarwal, N. (2019). Demographic differences and HR professionals’ concerns over the use of social media in hiring. e-Journal of Social & Behavioural Research in Business, 10(1), 1-9.
Jacobson, J., & Gruzd, A. (2020). Cybervetting job applicants on social media: the new normal? Ethics and Information Technology, 22, 175-195. Web.
Katiyar, V., & Saini, G. K. (2016). Impact of social media activities on employer brand equity and intention to apply. NMIMS Management Review, 28, 11-31.
Khorsheed, R. K., Othman, B., & Sadq, Z. M. (2020). The impacts of using social media websites for efficient marketing. Journal of Xi’an University of Architecture & Technology, 12(3), 2221-2235.
Richter, M., König, C. J., Geiger, M., Schieren, S., Lothschütz, J., & Zobel, Y. (2018). “Just a little respect”: Effects of a layoff agent’s actions on employees’ reactions to a dismissal notification meeting. Journal of Business Ethics, 153(3), 741-761. Web.
Thornthwaite, L. (2018). Social media and dismissal: Towards a reasonable expectation of privacy? Journal of Industrial Relations, 60(1), 119-136. Web.