With the Olympics round the corner, many workers will be having one tab open for work and one open for play.
This is, obviously, detrimental to productivity. So how does HR roll with the punches and get over the finishing line with both morale and output intact?
Speaking to HR Grapevine, Alison Dodd, Managing Director of Moorepay, advises HR on how to cope, and work with, absences this summer – specifically sports-related absence.
"Introducing flexible working hours, providing viewing facilities in the office, or even giving staff time off in lieu, will all boost morale and greatly improve productivity on non-game days. There is a lot businesses can do to keep their employees happy and reduce sports-related absenteeism this summer.
"Staff wanting to watch or listen to games will potentially have a detrimental impact on both engagement and productivity. This doesn't mean this summer is a complete write off, but it would be advisable for companies to plan around certain events ahead of time. In fact, these sporting events present companies with a great opportunity to improve employee satisfaction and engagement. If employees feel a company is willing to accommodate their interests, they are more likely to go the extra mile in return.
"It’s important for UK companies of all sizes to consider the most appropriate way of managing the busy summer of sporting events in 2016. The impact of lower employee engagement, absence, and loss of focus in the current business climate could be devastating for business performance – particularly among SMEs. Our survey shows one in ten employees are planning on ‘pulling a sickie’ over the summer months.
"Thinking ahead, and reviewing or implementing flexible working policies over this period is one way employers can not only mitigate any potential losses in productivity but also bolster employee engagement by considering the needs of both parties.
"At Moorepay we have an official policy for managing sickness and absence around major sporting events, such as the Rio Olympic Games. We actively encourage our employees to speak to their managers and agree on flexible working that allows them to watch their favourite teams in action without having to call in sick or take the day off, and we estimate upwards of 40% of our people at Moorepay are planning to make use of this policy.
"In practice, this means many of our employees are taking half-hour lunch breaks rather than the usual hour to accrue time they can then spend watching the games, either in the office or at home. Our employees understand the importance of balancing their customer-focused duties with having fun and enjoying a wonderful summer of sport together."