Employee Social Media Policy Example – Animal Shelter

Feb 11, 2017 | Policy Library

Social Media Policy for KC Pet Project Employees

At KC Pet Project, our employees are a part of a team that is passionate about the work that we do and saving lives in our community. We are often exposed to highly emotional and stressful situations daily and it can be easy to go online and share information about our days with the organization. We at KC Pet Project believe in open communication and you are encouraged to tell the world about your work and share your passion. Whether you do so on social media pages, blogs or other online publishing or discussion forums is up to you.

However, to avoid any problems or misunderstandings, here are a few guidelines that we ask for you to follow when operating on the internet as an identifiable employee of KC Pet Project.

1. Please familiarize yourself with KC Pet Project’s Information Technology and Computer Use Policy in your employee handbook

2. When you discuss KC Pet Project or organization-related matters on the internet, you must identify yourself with your name and, when relevant, your role with the organization. Very few people for KC Pet Project can be considered as official spokespeople for the organization, so if you are not one of them, please make clear you are speaking for yourself and not the organization. An example of a disclaimer would be to write, “The postings on this site are my own and do not necessarily represent the position, strategy or opinions of KC Pet Project.”

3. You are personally responsible for the content that you publish on the internet. Please remember that the internet never forgets and your posts/comments are easy to screenshot and share with anyone. If you believe that someone will not see you post that you are targeting in a negative way, please rest assured that they will. Everything that you post, even derogatory comments made in private emails/messages, can be shared with others, and public posts will be visible for a long time. Please use common sense. If you feel uncomfortable or question what you are about the post, review it.

4. Please be aware that others will associate you with your employer when you post negative or passive aggressive posts about yourself, a situation that you had during the day, information about an animal, or another organization, even if you don’t identify yourself as an employee in your post. You represent KC Pet Project inside and outside the workplace. Your coworkers can see when you put up a negative post, and it can reflect poorly on the way that you are viewed as a co-worker and to the general public.

5. Even if you act with the best intentions, you must remember that anything you write can potentially harm the organization and the animals in our care. This also pertains to internal communications.

6. Content posted on the KC Pet Project Staff social media page is for staff eyes only. Please do not share internal communication with the public, volunteers, fosters, media or other associations. This includes information about animals, upcoming events or promotions, financial or legal matters, etc. Please see your signed Confidentiality Agreement for more information.

7. Do not use ethnic slurs, personal insults, obscenity or engage in any conduct that would not be acceptable in the workplace. Show consideration for others privacy and avoid topics that may be considered objectionable or inflammatory.

8. Think about the consequences of your actions. If you do not want your posts to be brought up in a forum outside of your workplace, then you need to reconsider your post. Using your public voice to trash or embarrass your employee, your coworkers, your customers, other organizations doing similar work in the community, or even yourself is not ok and is not a smart business decision.

9. Respect your co-workers and the organization. Don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t feel comfortable saying in the whole office – with a camera rolling.

10. If you post something that is inaccurate or untrue, admit your mistake on the public forum.

11. With shared computers, phones and work space, if a co-worker has used a social media page or logged on to their email and left it open, please log out and/or close the program down before continuing your work. Respect your co-workers privacy.

 

Please remember if you have a situation or grievance about a KC Pet Project policy, situation, etc. to bring it to the attention of your manager before sharing in a public setting. Any violations of these policies may result in negative employment action, up to and including termination of employment.

For more information about employee right on public forums, please see the National Labor Relations Act at https://www.nlrb.gov/resources/national-labor-relations-act.

IMPORTANT:

Please keep in mind that we are not lawyers! Every shelter or rescue group (and every state) has different requirements for what a policy or job description looks like. Social Media for Animals and the originating organizations are simply providing these as examples, and do not guarantee that they would be applicable to your facility, or meet the requirements of your human resources department or applicable laws and regulations.