How should employers deal with requests for time off to watch key matches during the World Cup or other major sporting events?
How can employers prevent employees spending too much time at work discussing the World Cup or other major sporting events and distracting other employees?
How can employers avoid allegations of unfair and/or discriminatory treatment when allowing employees to take time off to watch major football tournaments?
Should employers adopt a sporting events policy and what should it include?
What should an employer do if it suspects that an employee's reported sickness absence is not genuine and is due instead to him or her taking time off work to watch a football match?
What should an employer do if an employee is detained in police custody due to alleged football hooliganism, and is unable to attend work?
Employers should not preclude employees from discussing major football tournaments such as the World Cup or other major sporting events during work time. However, if such conversations impact on the performance of individual employees or parts of an employer's operations (because employees spend too much time talking and distracting others), the employer will need to address the matter.
As a first step, where it identifies that there is an issue in terms of employees spending too much time talking about the tournament, the employer could issue a memo to all staff reminding them that, while the it is an exciting time, the employer's business needs must come first. The memo could state that the employer has noticed a decline in performance and productivity as a result of, for example, World Cup discussions, which is a concern, and that employees should remain focused on work. Employees may be reminded that personal conversations about sporting events should not take precedence over day-to-day duties and that, if the situation continues, it may be necessary for the employer to apply its disciplinary procedure. Where the employer has implemented a specific policy that applies to special events such as the World Cup, it should remind employees of its existence.
Where the problem persists, the employer may be left with no option but to investigate further and instigate its disciplinary procedure against employees who spend too much time discussing football during working hours.
How should employers deal with employees who turn up for work drunk or hung-over after watching a World Cup match or other major sporting event?
How should employers deal with employees who are late for work due to having stayed up to watch a World Cup match the night before?
Can employees be required to work from home if the transport system is disrupted?
What action can employers take in advance of major sporting events to discourage absenteeism?
How should employers deal with employees who spend work time following sporting events on the internet?
Is an employer under an obligation to conduct a risk assessment where an employee will temporarily be working from home?
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