Social Media Demands Strong Oversight From Leaders

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Social media governance

Business leaders who relegate social media to the marketing group and don't make it a board-level consideration are underestimating the damage it can cause.

3. Develop a social media incident response plan. This is of critical importance, given the speed at which a seemingly minor enterprise incident can become a full-blown crisis on social media. Organizations need to determine who responds in the aftermath of a crisis and the role of top executives. They must also ensure that there is organizational alignment on messaging. One misstep in dealing with a crisis can go viral.

4. Give staff members social media training. All employees should receive periodic social media training to ensure there is awareness of basic expectations that, if disregarded, could damage the brand of an organization. Staff members should follow enterprise policies and procedures on social media. This includes not self-appointing themselves to speak on behalf of their enterprise.

5. Audit social media. According to the 5th Annual IT Auditing Benchmark research done by ISACA and Protiviti in 2015, very few organizations spent significant time auditing social media, and most IT auditors still spend the majority of their time auditing IT general controls. As more and more companies embrace the business benefits of social media, auditors must strive to understand how social media developments and trends affect their organizations. Audit and risk committees need to ensure that a social media audit is included in internal audit plans.

6. Monitor and evaluate. The key to social media governance is "listening" to your enterprise social media audience, competitors and the market in general. The secret to social media success is in evaluating the gigantic amounts of data, and using predictive analytics tools to continuously update social media policies, strategies and objectives. Enterprises need to constantly be on the lookout for both negative and positive mentions in posts, shares and tweets in order to adopt and adapt their social media policies, strategies and objectives.

Effective use of social media has become a global business imperative—one that requires a sound governance framework to properly execute. A holistic approach, taking into account key products, processes, and internal and external stakeholders, is required.

While there are variables to consider depending on an organization’s size, location and mission, the need for sound governance of social media is one area that virtually all of today’s enterprises cannot afford to overlook.

Tichaona Zororo, CISA, CISM, CGEIT, CRISC, COBIT 5 Certified Assessor, CIA, CRMA, is a board director of ISACA, a chair of the ISACA Audit & Risk Committee, president of the ISACA South Africa Chapter, and an IT advisory executive with Enterprise Governance of IT (EGIT).

This article was originally published on 2017-08-23
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