Tackle World Cup absences & have holiday’s covered this summer…

Workplace expert, Acas, have launched a new set of guidelines specifically to help employers prepare for potential issues that could arise over the World Cup period.

The 2014 World Cup will kick off in Brazil on Thursday 12 June until Sunday 13 July. Tennis fans will be keen to keep an eye on Wimbledon that runs from 23 June to 6 July and not forgetting the Commonwealth Games hosted in Glasgow from 23 July to 3 August.

Acas advise that employers and small businesses have agreements in place that cover sickness absence, requests for time off, website use during working hours or watching TV during popular sporting events.

Their top tips include:

Annual leaveemployers may wish to look at being a little more flexible when allowing employees leave during this period and employees should remember that it may not always be possible to book leave off. The key is for both parties to try and come to an agreement. All requests for leave should be considered fairly. A consistent approach should be applied for leave requests for other major sporting events too as not everyone likes football!

Sickness absence – levels of attendance should be monitored during this period in accordance with the company’s attendance policy. Any unauthorised absence or patterns of absence could result in formal proceedings. This could include the monitoring of high levels of sickness or late attendance due to post match hangovers.

Flexibility – one possible option is to have a more flexible working day. Employees could come in a little later or finish sooner and then agree when this time can be made up.

Allowing staff to listen to the radio or watch the TV may be another possible option. Employers could also allow staff to take a break during match times. Another option is to look at allowing staff to swap shifts with their manager’s permission.

It is important to be fair and consistent with all staff if you allow additional benefits during the World Cup. Any change in hours or flexibility in working hours should be approved before the event.

Use of social media and websites – there may be an increase in the use of social media such as Facebook, Twitter or websites covering the World Cup.

Employers should have a clear policy on web use in the workplace that is communicated to all employees. If employers are monitoring internet usage then the law requires them to make it clear that it is happening to all employees.

Drinking or being under the influence at work – some people may like to participate in a drink or two while watching the match or go to the pub to watch a match live. It is important to remember that anyone caught drinking at work or under the influence of alcohol in the workplace could be subject to disciplinary procedures. There may be a clear no alcohol policy at work and employees may need a reminder.

Acas Chair, Sir Brendan Barber, commented on the importance of maintaing a set staffing level Many businesses need to maintain a certain staffing level in order to survive. Employers should have a set of simple workplace agreements in place before kick off to help ensure their businesses remain productive whilst keeping staff happy too.

Holiday & World Cup Cover by Orbital

Here at Orbital we specialise in providing flexible workplace cover. Contact us to find out how we can cover your workplace this summer.

By Helen Younger

Orbital Recruitment are a supplier of personnel for both temporary and permanent vacancies to companies throughout the UK and are a specialist in delivering bespoke recruitment solutions tailored to companies needs. Find out more about the recruitment services we offer.