Walmart has become the quintessential stop for anything and everything you may possibly need. Some people call it a form of monopoly, but I just call it smart business. They outline a social media policy on their website (link above), and set forth guidelines for their stakeholders that include all forms of social media, and how to engage with them, what to expect from them and where to find more information.
Broken down by social media platform, these guidelines are posted on their website for easy access of information. In their Twitter and Facebook guidelines, Walmart explains their use of these mediums and how they set out to provide information on everything going on with Walmart, from foods to services. They make note that they do not reply to specific store or service issues via Twitter or Facebook, instead they provide a service number and website where individuals can find more information or help. I found this to be very interesting and made much sense to me. Instead of shutting down all tweets, they simply provide another outlet for consumers to head to with questions or concerns.
One thing I did find most interesting was that the bulk of the page is about their use of Walmart sponsored accounts, and not their actual employees, except for one small portion. Within the Walmart associate section, they tell their employees to know the rules, meaning that they cannot post private or confidential information about the company’s operations, services or customers. They also state to remember that Walmart has a full-time staff that works on social media to respond to customer inquiries or criticism. They ask that employees to not attempt to respond to certain tweets or Facebook posts regarding a particular store and a service. Lastly, they write to not post any personal problems or concerns that you as an employee may have about Walmart. If an employee has a problem, they ask to speak directly to store management, rather than post about it online.
Overall these are simple guidelines to follow, and seem to be the same standard guidelines set forth by many other organizations. I thought there would be more content on employees and how to handle social media, but I found most of the page was dedicated to explaining to stakeholders their use of social media and their company accounts. If I were to make a particular recommendation, it would be to set forth more rules for employees of Walmart. This would help employees have a better understanding of where Walmart is coming from in their guidelines. I thought there was not enough information in them, and I believe they should be expanded.
It is apparent that organizations have a social media policy for not only their own company accounts, but their employees as well. This helps everyone involved in the organization, including customers and employees. It is important for employees to know that what they may post online may affect not only themselves, but the company as well. Too many times I have heard a story about someone getting fired over posting a status on Facebook that degrades another employee or boss. It is important in these times because social media is becoming an everyday task and it has a tremendous impact on those who are involved within it.