Following the creation of a programme designed to disguise Twitter use at work, an industry expert has suggested companies should be embracing the use of social networking sites.

Ntl:Telewest business reported on Spreadtweet, a programme that disguises the fact staff are sending twitter updates by making it look as though they are working on a spreadsheet.

According to ntl: Telewest business, HR departments and companies as a whole should consider how Twitter can help their business, rather than banning it and encouraging use of programmes such as Spreadtweet.

Commenting on the positive use of the social networking sites for business, Stephen Beynon, managing director of ntl: Telewest business, said: "Sites like Twitter have transformed business communications, enabling organisations to share news, recruit employees, and engage with customers who are praising or criticising them."

Mr Beynon said that if a member of staff is recruited via a social networking site, they will expect to be given access to it when they begin work at that company.

Recent research by the Cranfield School of Management revealed that young workers spend 50 per cent of their day on the internet.