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TUC: Let football fans work flexibly during the World Cup

By Kirsty hewitt 

As the knockout round of the 2018 World Cup gets underway, bosses have been urged to consider flexible working arrangements for staff who want to watch the matches.

During the early stages of the tournament, some games took place during working hours and now as we approach the latter half of the competition, employers are being reminded that one in four employees in the UK work evenings.

The TUC suggested employers talk to staff to discuss options and perhaps allow workers to watch key games on company premises, or allow staff to work from home or come in early or later than usual.

Frances O’Grady, TUC General Secretary, said: “The World Cup is a landmark sporting event. Millions of workers around the UK will want to cheer on their national teams.

"Tournaments like this can be a great for building camaraderie at work, with colleagues running sweepstakes and spending time together.

“It’s important employers do not score an own goal by acting like killjoys. To avoid problems they should try and let people who want to watch the games do so, either at work or at home – and then claim back their time afterwards.”

Whether it’s global sporting events like the World Cup or things like children’s sport days, allowing staff greater flexibility will make them happier and more productive, she added.

Common types of flexible working include part-time hours, flexi-time, compressed hours, staggered hours, working from home and job sharing.

Flexible working has benefits for both the employer and the employee. Some 89 percent of respondents in a report by the International Workplace Group believed flexible working helps their business to grow.

Furthermore,  80 percent of those questioned said that enabling employees to work from anywhere helps them to recruit and retain top talent.