United Technologies: How much for that #hashtag? — Live from Member Meeting 35

Coverage of this session by Jordan Ynostrosa of SocialMedia.org. Connect with her on LinkedIn here.

2:10 — SocialMedia.org's Kurt Vanderah introduces United Technologies' Senior Manager of Social Media, Maureen Fitzgerald.

2:11 — Maureen: How do you start a social media policy? How much for the #hashtag? This is a question I got on more than one occasion.

2:12 — Maureeen: This was our 2012 – 2013 Baseline Assessment of our company's social media presence.

  • Employees blocked from social sites at work
  • Audit revealed a global footprint of 40+ social channels employees couldn’t see
  • Lack of governance resulted in separate policies for each UTC division
  • Special IT process for elevated requests was overwhelmed, backlog of approvals
  • Initiated peer, industry & B2B benchmarking
  • Highlighted conversations about UTC already happening on Twitter, Facebook, etc.

2:14 — Raising Social Awareness – We had an Internal Conference in July of 2013.

  • One day, we brought in guest speakers. Very senior officials. Had a panel discussion with about 100 employees from across the company. How do we, as a company, break into social media. What are the rules of the road. Had a one day session & felt really good about it.

2:15 — Maureen: We spring-boarded off of the conference, spent 6-9 months, looked at other companies, reached out to socialmedia.org – do you have a policy? guidelines?..etc. Then we went back to the folks that were on the panel with our ideas, and some of the jumped on social right away – some were still hesitant. But we wanted to stay together as a company & not leave anyone out.

2:17 — Building Momentum – Buy-in & Collaboration

  • Benchmarked corporate policies, guidelines
  • Engaged all stakeholders to address concerns
  • Presented to UTC's Presidents Council
  • Established Social Media Policy Council
  • Evaluated employee training options w/ HR
  • Built SharePoint site w/ IT to host resources
  • Partnered with Digital Media Council on rollout

2:19 — Social Media Policy, Guidelines was announced & launched on July 2nd 2014.

2:20 — Social Media Training – Employee Roadmap

Step 1: Complete Social Networking Risks course

  • Enables access to Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn at work, 40 minute course w/ certification quiz, 5 additional, optional training courses, Focus on work vs. personal posts, legal and security issues, effective engagement

Step 2: Within 24 Hours of completed raining, employee receives IT confirmation email w/ guidelines

Step 3: Ethics & Privacy pop-up, requires employees to accept policy terms

Step 4: Once accepted, employee moves into SharePoint Site w/ live feeds

Step 5: Optional employee training resources & additional videos – both run about 3 minutes.

  • UTC Social Smarts – Basic Do’s and Don’ts, advice on how best to engage via personal accounts
  • Careful Communication – How an IM or email conversation at work can go viral

2:24 — Maureen: As part of the policy, we opened a company sponsored channel – new application process. Sharepoint site hosts application for establishing new company social channels. Requires UTC Communications, IT, Legal, & HR approval. Since we started last summer, we approved 15 channels, 2 last week & 2 applications today.

2:26 — Training Program Results

In Less Than One Year We….

  • Launched UTC’s policy, guidelines, employee training & access program  Gained more than 20,000 U.S.-based employee participants
  • Approved more than a dozen company social media applications

What’s next? Expanding training & access globally to 200k+ employees

  • Translate into different languages, see if policies need to be changed…lots to do – big exciting challenge ahead.

Q & A:

Q: Do you still have orgs going rogue, even though you have these processes in place? strategy versus governance – does this approach come off as too ‘governance' focused?

A: Since we rolled out channel application, we have only seen 1 rogue page. It is in another language & country. Does this violate policy? Yes, it does – you can't use the company logo..etc. But before, we didn't have any of this written down. i was afraid it would come off as too governance. We went back to the social media council & came up with a couple drafts. If you are submitting a request, just give us the rationale behind it & what you want to accomplish.

Q: Do you continuously audit the accounts you have approved? how do you deal with discontinuing those channels?

A: We audit once a year, Twitter, Linked, Facebook, youtube..etc. Whats out there & how does that stack up against our approved channels. Channels that go quiet – that where our digital business unit comes into play.

Q: Centralization vs. Decentralization. How do you handle the branding with approving so many channels?

A: Before the applications come to the corporate unit, they go to the separate business units first. Once we have the blessing from the division heads, then it goes to corporate office. Then we have faith and validation that it aligns with the company brand.

Q: Employee hashtags? Do you required employees to use them. Do they diminish posts? Does the audience understand that its coming from the brand.

A: Do not require them. use official hashtag #unitedtech . We put that on all our CSR & community affair materials.

Q: On the employee participation, you have about 20,000 taking the trainings, was that mandatory?

A: It's optional – because we are such a large & global company. as we go into the global arena, there are different global requirements. that has made a big difference. We did a soft launch on July 2nd, but we were surprise when we came back from training. About 150 employees take the trainings daily.

Q: What about training/policy for employees that use their own social channels?

A: It's really basic stuff. Don't disrespect colleagues. Don't upload confidential information. We do have stricter policy for people that are running the social channels though.

Q: Employee engagement & monitoring. how did you have this discussion?

A: The initial hesitation – we are a defense/aerospace company. We had the question, Is that a risk? But even the government agencies were using social, so that helped.