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SOCIAL MEDIA COMPLIANCE IN THE CORPORATE ENVIRONMENT: IT’S NOT ALL SOCIAL

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Manjot Dhendsa, Product Marketing at BancTec

BancTec’s Manjot Dhendsa takes a critical look at the direction of social media in the corporate world.

Boardroom and business leaders relationship with social media regularly moves between love and loath. Social media is a strong asset in business when it goes right, but when social media campaigns, policies and the reactions to them go wrong, social media can have a highly damaging affect on the company in question. In the last year we have seen some organisations struggle and others thrive in the social media environment. Almost every large organisation now has a Twitter and Facebook account, whether they are a B2B or B2C organisation. Managing social media communications is becoming ever more important.

There is an ever evolving pattern amongst the public, especially amongst the younger generation to use social media as a means to complain about a poor service or praise a good one. It seems almost anyone associated with an organisation has the potential to be targeted on social media when complaints come in.  We saw earlier this year, when Lloyds, Bank of Scotland and TSB’s systems collapsed Paul Pester, TSB CEO, took to Twitter to personally and directly respond to customers, answering their questions and reassuring them throughout the difficulties. Customers have an expectation of direct communication with companies and their staff on social media. These expectations need to be managed and organised.

Manjot Dhendsa, Product Marketing at BancTec

Manjot Dhendsa, Product Marketing at BancTec

The fact Paul had to respond to customers personally, was a reflection of the bank’s failure to appropriately manage their social media communications and sufficiently invest for times like these. TSB, Lloyds and the Bank of Scotland were warned when in 2013, RBS and NatWest had a systems crash in the run up to Christmas. When NatWest’s systems went down at the beginning of December, social media made the crash newsworthy within an hour. Following initial issues people started tweeting and posting about the crash on Facebook, gaining momentum, airing on national news outlets before even the marketing department knew about it. If banks facing these issues tightened links to marketing departments and increased social media monitoring much of this could be avoided. Customers could receive responses to complaints and the bank could begin to get the message across that they were dealing with issues.

While almost two-thirds of large organisations have at least one full-time employee dedicated to using social media, only 10% are reporting benefits to the business resulting from the investments.  This is in part due to large enterprises seeing social media as being ‘owned by’ marketing, or sales departments, and failing to look at wider opportunities to benefit from social within their businesses. However, it is largely the organisations who have the most to win by incorporating social media into their wider business processes through the ability to build customer relationships and drive business decisions based on customer feedback. For example despite social media users basing many purchases on social media comments about goods or services, only 27% of R&D/product development and 37% of product management departments regularly view social media comments from consumers.

Being aware of social media is becoming increasingly relevant in the corporate world, and an awareness of social media communications can bring significant benefits to an organisation. Managing social media effectively is essential in today’s  business environment.

In the last few weeks, the social media news story most shared across social media channels was about the poorly chosen hashtag used by the New York Police Department (NYPD). In an attempt to better their reputation, the NYPD launched a Twitter campaign asking New Yorkers to tweet pictures of themselves posing proudly with police officers using the twitter hashtag, #myNYPD. The proponents of the hashtag however, failed to consider the potential negative uses for the hashtag. Instead of posting amicable pictures with NYPD officers, many New Yorkers chose to highlight the negative behaviour of officers. Twitter was inundated with images of officers asleep and wielding batons at seemingly innocent citizens. In this case, the NYPD social media team failed to fully calculate how a social media campaign could be negatively used against them.

According to the Social Media Marketers Report, 43% of people aged 20-29 spend more than 10 hours a week on social media, making it impossible to deny the importance of this essential tool. Social media is now very much an important corporate tool as well. People are always on the look out for something to post about, and social media can be very powerful in driving change. We just have to look at Starbucks, when it was revealed they were not paying enough tax in the UK, social media sentiment towards the brand spiked, and Starbucks chose to reconsider their decision.

The social media failures of banks and other organisations are clear justifications for the need to manage social media communications within the corporate world. Social media is almost a means to ascertain public opinion of an individual company, and the corporate world needs to pay attention.

— by Manjot Dhendsa, Product Marketing at BancTec

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Bitcoin, ether hit fresh highs

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Bitcoin, ether hit fresh highs 1

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Bitcoin hit a fresh high in Asian trading on Saturday, extending a two-month rally that saw its market capitalisation cross $1 trillion a day earlier.

The world’s most popular cryptocurrency rose to an record $56,620, taking its weekly gain to 18%. It has surged more than 92% this year.

Bitcoin’s gains have been fuelled by evidence it is gaining acceptance among mainstream investors and companies, such as Tesla Inc, Mastercard Inc and BNY Mellon.

Ether, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization and daily volume, hit a record $2,040.62, for a weekly gain of about 12%.

Ether is the digital currency or token that facilitates transactions on the ethereum blockchain. In the crypto world, the terms ether and ethereum have become interchangeable.

Ether futures contracts launched on derivatives exchange CME earlier this month.

(Reporting by Vidya Ranganathan; Editing by William Mallard)

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World Bank pushing for standard vaccine contracts, more disclosure from makers

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World Bank pushing for standard vaccine contracts, more disclosure from makers 2

By Andrea Shalal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The World Bank is working to standardize COVID-19 vaccine contracts that countries are signing with drug makers, and is pushing manufacturers to be more open about where doses are headed, as it races to get more vaccines to poor countries, the bank’s president said on Friday.

World Bank President David Malpass told Reuters he expected the bank’s board to have approved $1.6 billion in vaccine funding for 12 countries, including the Philippines, Bangladesh, Tunisia and Ethiopia, by the end of March, with 30 more to follow shortly thereafter.

The bank is working with local governments to identify and fill gaps in distribution capacity, after they purchase vaccines under a $12 billion World Bank program, and also to standardize the contracts they are signing with manufacturers, he said.

The bank’s International Finance Corp, its private financing arm, has $4 billion to invest in expanding existing production plants or building new ones, including in developed countries, but needs more data on where current production is headed, he said.

“We are eager to be investing in new capacity, but it’s hard to do because you don’t know how much of the existing capacity is already committed to the various off-takers,” Malpass said in an interview with Reuters. New or expanded plants could be used to produce other types of vaccinations in the future, he said.

The bank’s funds could be used to expand plants in advanced economies, if the production was earmarked for developing nations, he said.

Malpass welcomed Friday’s pledge by the Group of Seven rich countries to intensify cooperation on the pandemic, saying it could help jump-start deliveries of vaccines to poorer countries, which are lagging far behind rich countries in getting shots in arms.

Data compiled by Our World In Data, a scientific online publication, showed Israel was leading the world in COVID-19 vaccinations, with nearly 82 of 100 people vaccinated, while India and Bangladesh reported less than one person per 100, Many African countries have not started at all.

Malpass said he was heartened by news about new vaccines coming down the road, and about Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE seeking permission to store their vaccine at higher temperatures, which would ease another obstacle to deliveries in lower-income countries.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Heather Timmons and Leslie Adler)

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Google to evaluate executive performance on diversity, inclusion

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Google to evaluate executive performance on diversity, inclusion 3

By Paresh Dave

(Reuters) – Alphabet Inc’s Google will evaluate the performance of its vice presidents and above on team diversity and inclusion starting this year, the company said on Friday in one of several responses to concerns about its treatment of a Black scientist.

Timnit Gebru, co-leader of Google’s ethical artificial intelligence research team, said in December that Google abruptly fired her after she criticized its diversity efforts and threatened to resign.

Alphabet and Google Chief Executive Sundar Pichai ordered a review of the situation. While Google declined to share specific findings, the company announced on Friday it will engage human resources specialists during sensitive employee departures.

Pichai in June said that by 2025, Google aims to have 30% more of its leaders come from underrepresented groups, with a focus on Black, Latinx and Native American leaders in the United States and female technical leaders globally. About 96% of Google’s U.S. leaders at the time were white or Asian, and 73% globally were men.

As a result of the investigation, the company also expanded a commitment announced in June to devote more resources to retaining and promoting existing employees, including by expanding a team addressing disputes among workers and their managers.

The diversity component of executive performance reviews was not previously announced, and the company did not immediately share details about what would be measured and how pay would be affected.

Alphabet for years had rejected proposals from shareholders and employees to set diversity goals and tie executive pay to them.

Irene Knapp, a former Google employee who advocated for one such proposal at a 2018 shareholder meeting, said on Friday, “I am pleased that they met our demand from 2018, which was a bare minimum that should have been easy to do immediately.”

Evaluating managers on diversity goals is becoming more commonplace. McDonald’s Corp on Thursday tied executive bonuses to diversity.

(Reporting by Paresh Dave; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

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