Commercial Property Businesses Unprepared for the 2012 Olympic Games

Posted on 8 February, 2012 by MOVEHUT

New research from recruitment consultants Badenoch & Clark shows that UK employers remain unprepared for the anticipated summer surge in staff leave brought on by the Olympic Games.

The company’s survey of 1000 commercial office employees found that close to three-quarters of commercial property firms (70.5 per cent) have not implemented a leave and absence plan, and the number of commercial property firms that do not have a policy in place has increased by just 9.4 per cent in the last five months.

With only six months to go until the games start, commercial property businesses will be hard-pressed to get measures in place to ensure staff absenteeism does not affect operations throughout the almost month-long event.

Of the employers that have developed leave plans for the Games, 9.2 per cent have said that any leave will operate on a first-come, first-served basis, while 4.2 per cent have already told employees they will be refused time off during important Olympic dates.

Broken down geographically, commercial property businesses in the East of England are most prepared, with 44.8 per cent of employees briefed on absence guidelines for the Games. Commercial property businesses in Northern Ireland (92.3 per cent) and Scotland (82.1 per cent) are the least prepared.

Alarmingly, commercial property businesses in London are somewhat unprepared, with two thirds, (62.3 per cent) of employers yet to develop and communicate absence plans to employees.

The need for a transparent London 2012 absence plan is essential for all commercial property businesses; research from July last year, conducted by Badenoch & Clark revealed that as many as one in six (15.7 per cent) employees would consider faking illness to watch the Games.

With business disruption expected from a number of sources during the Games, including transport; commercial property businesses must take steps to gain control over as many sources of disruption as possible.

MD at Badenoch & Clark, Nicola Linkleter, said: “As the six month countdown to ‘the greatest show on Earth’ begins, a majority of employers are still in denial about the impact it will have on their businesses. Given the immense interest the London Olympic Games will create among workers, this is poor planning that could lead to employee discontent, confusion and threadbare cover.”

She further added: “With Transport for London anticipating difficulties in getting people to work, employers need firm annual leave policies and contingency plans for possible staff shortfalls. As the countdown begins it is important to communicate these policies sooner rather than later.”

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