World Cup round-up

As you may have suspected, lots of companies have decided a certain sporting event taking place in South Africa is a good excuse for hitting the PR button.

So in honour of the start of the World Cup, here are just a few football-related items to keep you going until kick-off and beyond.

The REC is offering its own advice to members regarding staff who go off ‘sick’ or take ‘duvet days’ during the tournament. A new model policy has now been published for employers to make employees aware of where they stand on absences and other behaviour during the World Cup, especially when the team they support is playing.

The new policy document ‘Time Off for Sporting Events’ was launched last month and is available free to all REC corporate members. Visit

Fiona Coombe, director of professional development at the REC, says: “Employers need to ensure that effective policies covering major sporting events including the World Cup are in place.

“Employers should be realistic about employees’ enthusiasm to watch the games while trying to ensure minimum staffing levels are maintained.” Offering flexible working or even screening matches in the workplace may provide for a more enjoyable World Cup for all, she adds.

And along these lines, IT, technical and engineering specialist recruiter IntaPeople believes the tournament is the perfect opportunity to introduce flexible working procedures for employees.

Stephen Riley, director at IntaPeople, says: “Instead of viewing the World Cup as a potential pitfall, firms should treat it as an ideal opportunity to provide flexible working options to their employees. We work with a number of companies that are reaping the rewards of taking this kind of approach.”

Taking a different tack, professional services firm Towers Watson says that if there was an ‘employee team management’ World Cup, Brazil and Portugal would be in the final.

The analysis assumes that the national teams illustrate what happens in companies in their countries in terms of organisation support and management skills.

Apparently England would be eliminated — by Germany — in the last 16… so no change there then.

Finally, Douglas Scott Legal Recruitment is running a sweepstake with a difference for their employees. After drawing teams out of the hat, the winner will bag a World Cup themed meal for two with drinks at a top restaurant in Manchester.

Director Jonathan Nolan explains: “The idea is that the winning country will provide the food, so if it is Argentina we would maybe go to the Gaucho and there are plenty of options for favourites like Italy, Brazil, France, Spain and Portugal.

“If England win then all the staff will win a meal for two, which will be at an English restaurant in the city.” Steak and chips all round!

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