Many bosses are undecided over the importance of social networking sites, it has emerged.
According to Infosecurity Europe event director Claire Sellick, many IT directors do not like social networking sites such as Bebo, Facebook and MySpace.
However, human resources managers are all for usage of social networking sites in the workplace, Online Recruitment reports.
Managing director of Global Secure Systems (GSS) David Hobson commented that social networking sites command a fine balancing act by employers.
"Social networking sites are now integral to the way that many of the latest and youngest recruits into the workforce communicate and work, so for some sectors social networking sites may have a part to play in terms of competitive advantage or used for research or as a marketing tool," he said.
The two experts were commenting following findings by their companies that discovered UK firms could be losing £6.5 million a year in lost productivity due to social networking sites.
One boss who accepts social networking wholeheartedly is Yngve Traberg, chief executive of ClickAJob.
"Anything that enthuses people and involves their interest is vital to employers," he says.
"Which makes social networking one of the best tools yet for employee motivation - we just need to use it properly. At the workplace for instance, it's a recognised timewaster, so access should be restricted to accommodate working hours. But properly policed, it's use should be encouraged," he remarks.
Mr Traberg cites two reasons for optimism.
"It's an unparalleled insight into employee attitudes," he notes, "free, gratis, and handed to us on a plate."
"Frankly, any employer who does not Google new employees, or search for their profile on MySpace, Facebook and the other popular sites, is just not screening their staff properly."
And the other?
"Networks like Facebook are a social phenomenon," he adds. "As much part of life as texting, pop music and fast food."
"We can no more prevent them than we can prevent gravity. So we might as well get used to using them effectively."