Detailed in a new study commissioned by AVG, approximately thirty-three percent of Americans between the age of 18 to 25 are Facebook friends with their boss in the workplace. While the average of all eleven countries was around twenty-five percent, the United States and Italy tied for the highest percentage of young adults that befriended their boss on the popular social network. Alternatively, the lowest percentages came from Germany, Japan and France. AVG’s sample size across the eleven countries included approximately 4,400 young adults.
Regarding this social trend with young adults, AVG Security Evangelist Tony Anscombe stated “AVG’s latest research clearly shows young people today have a comfort with using online social networks that is leading to blurring between their professional and private lives. It seems obvious that posting abusive content about a boss or workplace is not very sensible, but it’s important to understand that not only could it damage a person’s existing career, it could also negatively impact on future opportunities too.”
In addition, an average of thirteen percent of young adults claimed to have posted a negative comment on Facebook about their boss or workplace after a stressful day at the office. Employees in Germany, Spain and Italy were the most likely to complain on Facebook. Nearly sixty percent of Americans don’t take advantage of Facebook’s filtering tools to restrict the content that can be viewed by co-workers. People working in Japan and the Czech Republic were the most likely to bypass those security filters while young adults in Germany and France are more diligent about hiding updates from co-workers.
Approximately 43 percent of young adults had performed an audit of all social profiles on the Web in order to make themselves look attractive to employers. In addition, thirteen percent of young adults in America mentioned that information found on one of their social pages was brought up during an interview. Regarding the use of information found on social media profiles during the interview process, Anscombe said “Our research findings indicate that today’s 18- 25 year old ‘digital natives’ need to be more aware of their online brand as something employers and recruiters are increasingly investigating.”
While America did rank the highest for boss friendships, young American adults are carefully watching what type of media is posted on Facebook. According to the report, the United States ranked the lowest in young adults that are posting inappropriate images on their Facebook accounts.
Spain ranked the highest as eighty percent of respondents claim to post inappropriate images on their profiles. Interestingly, over half of all respondents wish that they could remove all inappropriate images of themselves off social networks.
Regarding accessing social networks in the workplace, nearly sixty percent of Americans admit to using a mobile device like a smartphone to access Facebook or other social networks. A previous study indicated that nearly eighty percent of people can’t last a single day without checking up on the latest Facebook status updates. More recently, a man attempting to become more productive while working hired a woman off Craigslist to slap him in the face each time he started wasting time on Facebook.