World Cup fever to hit firms

COMPANIES who fail to tap into the World Cup fever could end up with high level of absenteeism, a study has revealed.

COMPANIES who fail to tap into the World Cup fever could end up with high level of absenteeism, a study has revealed.

Gert de Beer, human capital director at audit firm Deloitte, said yesterday that employers need to ensure that positive morale is built up around the World Cup and put appropriate measures in place to ensure that employees are productive.

"Not doing so may result in a negative working environment with employees taking extended sick leave and high levels of absenteeism," De Beer said.

The employee perception survey among 500 people showed that people were willing to work longer hours if that meant they could watch some matches.

But companies have different views on this.

First National Bank marketing manager Vicki Trehaeven said it would be business as usual during the month-long tournament.

"People who have tickets for games will have to apply for leave.

"It will also be down to various business units on how they work their schedules around it," she said.

Mqondisi Gumede, director of Imison, a development company in Johannesburg, said a special committee was already in place, discussing how to work around the tournament.

"We will set up a marquee at our offices for workers' children and allow our workers to watch certain games during working hours," said Gumede.

"It is better for people to watch the games at work than to go away and come back five hours after the game," he said.

South African Breweries's spokesperson Robyn Chalmers said: "We will encourage employees who wish to watch the World Cup matches to do so, but we do not currently have specific policies in place such as actively encouraging employees to take leave during the World Cup or getting them to fill out attendance registers.

"We believe our employees will watch the games responsibly, having completed their tasks."

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