An evaluation of the use of Social Media and how it affects productivity/cost effectiveness at the workplace
Muawia Elias Ibrahim Babiker
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Social media have become a dominant component of our life, influencing all segments of our societies in almost all aspects. Social networking, therefore, has been a hot topic for researchers over the past few years. However, there has been limited research on the impact of this rapidly evolving phenomenon on organisations. This study aims to contribute to understanding the impact of social media on businesses. The research has been conducted on the oil and gas sector in UAE through a set of methods including observations and semi-structured interviews with experts in the sector. The purpose of the research is to analyse the sector’s approach towards social media usage and measure its impact. To have closer insights into the subject, the research has investigated into the issue from the perspectives of 18 SMEs from UAE Ministry of Energy and A-Z, an integrated company that manages the oil sector in the UAE. A qualitative methodology using purposive sampling has been employed to answer the research question: “What is the impact of using social media as a strategic communications tool on employee productivity and cost effectiveness in UAE oil and gas sector?” The study has concluded that social media are used extensively in the sector but mainly for entertainment and socializing and not for business, which is negatively affecting the sector. Based on the literature review, it is argued that social media are of great value to organisations. But experts warn that if not used wisely social networking could create business risks, turning into a destructive tool. As per the findings of this study. There seems to be a correlation between social media usage and productivity and cost effectiveness. The study recommends further research to explore how organisations can benefit from the technology.
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