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Nearly 20 percent of FDs see tangible RoI in social media

Finance directors hugely sceptical about Twitter, but report value from LinkedIn

10 Dec 2010

By Melanie Stern

twitter-workshop-illustration

More than 16 percent of finance directors responding to a Financial Director survey have said that social media networking sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook have demonstrated a return on investment (RoI) for their career or their business, while five percent say the RoI has been "significant".

According to the survey conducted exclusively by Financial Director with FDs and CFOs, while there remains deep scepticism about the business case for social media and the risks involved among FDs, there is evidence that many of them have seen demonstrable value from joining online forums.

Twenty percent of FDs responding to the survey said that they had received what they saw as a genuine offer of employment through a social media networking site, while more than 20 percent said they use them to research the background of a prospective employee - and others use such sites to locate and approach future finance employees.

Despite the surprising response on the value and uses social media networking sites provide FDs, there remain a lot of concerns about their application. One FD said that using social networking sites for recruiting finance people "would be divisive and potentially discriminatory. It smacks of a different type of 'old boys club'." Others were concerned about privacy issues and singled out Twitter in particular as the least useful of the most commonly used platforms. "Twitter is just noise and a drain that information pores into: not useful for advice," said one respondent; "It's just gossip" said another.

To see the results of the survey in full and what FDs really think about the business value of social media networking platforms, see the January 2011 issue of Financial Director magazine and check financialdirector.co.uk in January.

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