Sarah Carter contemplates a particular new Social Network feature set, that is causing some concern in certain sectors.
You can’t have helped but notice all the new features delivered by the social networks in recent months. As a point in fact, here at Actiance, we’ve tracked a whole lot so far this year. In 2012, we’ve tracked 150 changes on Twitter, 178 on LinkedIn and a whopping 1272 on Facebook.
In today’s blog entry, I wanted to touch on one of the recent new features from LinkedIn: Skills and Endorsements – the very term “endorsement” raises particular issues in the financial services industry, so I wanted to explain more about how you can deal with this.
With LinkedIn, there are two elements to Endorsements.
2) Endorsements of those Skills.
As a LinkedIn user I can add a skill to my profile. Once I have added this skill to my profile, ANYONE that I am connected to can endorse that skill. Right now, I have no control over who can or cannot endorse me. I can however, hide that endorsement. Once I have hidden that endorsement, there is no current way to unhide it.
In addition to skills that I might add to my own profile, any of my connections can suggest a skill for my profile, with this suggestion comes an attached endorsement. This skill (and endorsement) does not attach itself to my profile until I add that to my profile. In other words, I have to take affirmative action to make this happen.
Any connection I have may endorse skills that I have against my profile. As the owner of that profile, I have no control available over these people adding this endorsement to my profile.
BEST PRACTICE RECOMMENDATIONS:
1) Specify in your social media policy that items such as endorsements are considered recommendations and are expressly prohibited. Advise regulated users that they should NOT apply or accept skills on their profile and should hide all endorsements if any are present.
2) Enforce your written policy with technology and do not allow individuals to add Skills to their LinkedIn profile (i.e. control with technology, moderate all profiles and ensure that these additions are rejected).
3) Search all existing (relevant) users to provide a report on who has Skills against their profile.
4) Request the removal of skills against those relevant users and/or hide any endorsements that are present.
Actiance provides technical controls to report on the addition of Skills and Endorsements to LinkedIn profiles for regulated users, the Socialite platform also enables firms who require additional controls in this area to pre approve changes to areas of static content, such as LinkedIn Profiles.
Through a combination of teams at Actiance, from our Social Media Labs to our Social Engagement Team, Actiance provides alerts and best practice notifications to customers of changes on social networks, that positively or negatively impact a best practice approach. If you’d like to speak to one of our social engagement team, drop us a line firstname.lastname@example.org or drop us a message through @Actiance