Councils could make savings through social media

Councils consider using social media

Research by Crowd Control HQ indicates that councils could save money by increasing the use of social media. Mike Langton, communications officer at Barnet Council, said: ‘Social media has allowed our organisation to respond to residents’ questions and concerns efficiently, promoting transparency and openness. As a rule of thumb, we aim to respond to social media questions within the same time frame as media enquiries, demonstrating the importance and belief we have in the medium. By expanding our social media presence we have been able to give individual council services control of their own accounts, as they are ultimately the people on the ground carrying out the day-to-day jobs and are therefore better placed to answer resident questions than the corporate communications could ever be.’James Leavesley, chief executive of Crowd Control HQ, said: ‘Messages on social networks have an obvious tendency to be expressed publicly; and can quite easily be captured or saved even should they be deleted at a later date. If local government is to use social media appropriately then it must mitigate the risk of reputational damage through possible misuse by implementing policies and moderating effectively.’

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