As an Employer or HR Manager, how can you manage the World Cup and other sporting events?
With the Football World Cup taking place from 20 November 2022 through to 18 December 2022 and other sporting events taking place we take a look at how to manage this in your workplace.
As an Employer or HR Manager, what should I be considering?
We would suggest if Employers/HR Managers have not done so already they consider at a minimum:
- Communicating best practice with teams
- Allowing Annual leave
- Allowing Unpaid leave
- Managing Absence Management
- Reviewing HR policies
- Allowing teams to watch the events at work on TV
Let’s take a look at each of these in more detail, including the risks involved, how to mitigate these and as we always advise how as an Employer or HR Manager to take a reasonable approach with your team.
As an Employer or HR Manager, how should I manage annual leave requests?
We would always suggest that you have an Annual Leave policy in place as this sets your framework for your team, it should set out how to book leave, the amount of notice required, how many people can be off at any one time, of course, your right to refuse requests and any consequences if leave is taken unauthorised.
You may find and due to the events, that you are experiencing volume requests, you may then want to consider:
- Allocating Annual Leave on a ‘first come first served’ basis; or
- Allocating Annual Leave on a ‘lottery style; basis
The last method can useful and lets Employees know they have all had fair and equal opportunity, on the flip side it can have its pitfalls as some see it as exactly as it is, a ‘lottery’, and many do not feel this is fair and equal, so do consider this as a risk.
As an Employer or HR Manager do you need to approve all requests for Annual Leave?
We always suggest that you take a balanced and reasonable approach when dealing with requests for Annual Leave, as we have mentioned above we would always suggest that you have an Annual Leave policy in place as this sets your framework for your team, it should set out how to book leave, the amount of notice required, how many people can be off at any one time, of course your right to refuse requests and any consequences if leave is taken unauthorised.
You can refuse the right to request to take and or book Annual Leave (all or part of), this should be subject to the above, in this instance you could:
- Refuse the request, we suggest you follow this up in writing with your Employee with your reasons
- Refuse the request, but suggest alternative an option, this may be for another Employee to cover the time, this would enable the Annual Leave to be taken
In all instances act fairly to all and take a reasonable approach.
As an Employer or HR Manager, what should I do if an Employee pre-empts or takes the time off following a refusal of Annual Leave?
You may find this an issue where a request has been refused, at times Employees are adamant they want the leave and or have booked something without the authorisation they need, in this instance time off could be considered to be unauthorised absence and therefore considered to be a disciplinary offence, in this instance we would recommend:
Instigate investigation proceedings, this will establish the reason for the absence and whether there is any evidence to suggest that the Employee has pre-empted the situation, as an Employer or HR Manager you should take the necessary steps to act appropriately, should you decide once you have completed an investigation that the matter be progressed to a disciplinary then as an Employer or HR Manager you have the right to take disciplinary action against the Employee, this may lead to a sanction in the form of a warning being issued and in the most severe cases dismissal.
As an Employer or HR Manager, how can I deal with Sickness and Absence?
We strongly urge that you review your Sickness/Absence policy detail and that you communicate your expectations to your team and as soon as possible, this will send out a clear message to your team.
We always find that working on a trust basis is the best option, you can request evidence should you suspect any foul play, this may be medical certificates etc.
Individuals do get poorly there is no denying that once again you need to act reasonably, we suggest if you suspect and have evidence that you take the necessary steps as above and first investigate any sickness/absence that you feel is suspect.
As a business should we have a TV on and allow the team to watch the games?
This can be a massive morale booster and one that in your business (or parts of it) could work excellently, for others it may not, you should take a view at how it would work for your business and your ‘team’, we use the word ‘team’ as by setting up a TV for viewing at work then involves everyone and this can create issues…
You may be wondering how and why? Not everyone likes to watch sport/football, they may find it off-putting, and distracting and some may find it discriminatory based on race and even sex, this may be, if they feel that a certain nationality or gender are being given more favourable treatment.
In the interests of all, we would suggest that TV’s and viewing is made available only where space permits, this should be rather than forcing Employees to remove themselves.
How can we help?
Our advice is to plan, communicate and manage your team, and above all enjoy the sporting events.
At HR and You Ltd we have a team of highly experienced HR Consultants who can assist, support, and manage any HR and Employment Law matter, why not contact us for a confidential no obligation chat? 0333 006 9489 or email us at [email protected]
We look forward to bringing out the absolute best in your people.
Why not take a look at our whistlsHow can you manage the world cup and other sporting events top video on this subject plus many more on our Youtube Channel:
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