Olympic employee engagement

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1 Your guide to Olympic employee engagement

2

3 Page 3 of 8 Olympic Games July 27 - August 12 Paralympic Games August 29 - September 9 On July 27 a six-week sporting bonanza kicks off as London 2012 begins. 15,000 of the world s leading sports stars will be competing in 36 Olympic and 21 Paralympic sports, watched by 11 million spectators as first the Olympic Games and the Paralympics put theuk in the sporting spotlight as never before. While the majority of events have a London focus, Olympic fever is set to grip the nation, building on the recent Queen s Diamond Jubilee celebrations that captivated the UK. Unless you have buried your head in the sand for the past few years, you will know that the Games are coming and they are expected to have a significant impact on the workforce. It is anticipated that the capital will see the most significant disruption to work practices, but the impact is bound to be felt in every business across the UK. From Friday July 27 to Sunday August 12 TVs across the nation will be permanently switched onto the Olympic Games. Then, from Wednesday August 29 to Sunday September 9, there ll be a second hit as the Paralympics take centre stage. There s no doubt that the nation will be absorbed in the Games. But as Britain s employers, does that present a problem or an opportunity for you?

4 Page 4 of 8 Engagement isn t a nice to have it s a key aspect of productivity that infuses every aspect of the way you do business. Nita Clarke, Engagement guru Building on the excitement Don t miss the boat With the London 2012 Olympic Games only a couple of week s away, excitement is building. We recently surveyed over 100 of our clients across the UK who on average scored 6.5 out of 10 on a scale of excitement; this will only go up as the Games draw closer. Those employers who are looking to celebrate London 2012 in their workplace stated that they are expecting the positive feeling of the Games to foster a sense of fun in their offices and generate a more vibrant, buzzy atmosphere. 34.5% of those employers who are scheduling Olympic activation plans are yet to communicate these plans with staff celebrating with a sense of common purpose could all go a long way to unlock that extra 10% of effort that could mean everything for your business In these economically-troubled times, the Games can provide your company with a fantastic catalyst to engage with its staff. As Olympic energy ramps up, you need to make the most of this once-in-a-lifetime spectacular. Incredibly, 63% of employers are not planning on celebrating the Games at any level in their workplace. This reveals a dramatic failing of British employers to capitalise on the opportunity that London 2012 represents. It is unlikely that employers have avoided activation plans based on the views of their workers; nearly half (47%) of those not celebrating the Olympics in the workplace had consulted their staff before making the decision. The justification for some companies choosing to abstain from supporting the Games internally is predictable; nearly a quarter (21.2%) cited that cost control was of greater importance, and a further 15% said that their focus was on achieving company objectives. Of even greater concern, potentially, is that over a third (34.5%) of those employers who are scheduling Olympic activation plans are yet to communicate these plans with staff. With less than a month until Danny Boyle s opening ceremony hits Stratford, there is a danger that employers are missing a trick to fully engage their workforce. An engaged workforce will undoubtedly bring benefits to your organisation. As engagement guru Nita Clarke recently told us: Engagement isn t a nice to have it s a key aspect of productivity that infuses every aspect of the way you do business. We see the same four components belonging, support, voice and trust recurring time and again. They all combine to unlock the kind of discretionary effort that can deliver business advantage. Getting your people involved in activities around the Games; supporting them both to deliver in what could be a challenging few weeks and have fun at the same time; and celebrating with a sense of common purpose could all go a long way to unlock that extra 10% of effort that could mean everything for your business.

5 Page 5 of 8 What employees want To effectively engage with your teams it is important that they have a voice. Don t assume that there is an appetite for the Olympics without testing the waters first. Provided there is, treat your engagement activity like any other business project, the Olympics provides the chance to build the feel-good factor right across your work community. Over half (51.7%) of those employers that are using London 2012 as a platform for engagement will be watching events live in their offices, and a further 55.2% will be decorating their offices to support the British team. A recent Adecco survey of employees suggests these to be two crucial elements to Olympic engagement. If you are keen to provide access to watching live events in your office space, consider how best to make it happen. BBC1 will be wall-towall London 2012 from the Games opening ceremony so there ll be plenty of opportunity for the day shift, night shift and weekend workers all to keep up to speed on every aspect of the Games experience. You need to: Decide what events to flag as communal watching opportunities Work out the logistics of where to watch the events cafeteria, meeting rooms, work areas Sort out hardware issues do you need to bring in TVs or extra monitors? Do you have a TV licence for the building? Other companies are running Olympic-themed social events and introducing Olympic-themed work targets. Ultimately the activities don t need to detract from work, they can assist in productivity. Over a third (36%) of employers think that being involved in the Olympics will improve the working environment and more than a quarter (28%) anticipate that it will result in a more motivated and therefore productive workforce. Employers known to be celebrating the Games are generally having plans filtered down by top management, and whilst some plans are better than none at all, employers may be better advised to introduce planning teams. The best way to get people motivated around the Games is by getting them directly involved, a fact nearly a quarter (23.3%) of those taking part have taken on board the Games are all about inclusion after all. 51.7% of those employers that are using London 2012 as a platform for engagement will be watching events live in their offices 55.2% will be decorating their offices to support the British team How can you ensure equal treatment for those not interested in the Games? 23.3% of those taking part have introduced planning teams - the Games are all about inclusion after all

6 Page 6 of 8 Fail to prepare, prepare to fail As an employer, it is difficult to fully appreciate the scale of impact London 2012 will have on your place of work, the scale of disturbance will obviously differ depending on your relative proximity to the capital nonetheless there is no use burying your head in the sand. Notably, there will almost certainly be an impact on resourcing; whether it is driven by the fact many are planning on taking holidays abroad over the Olympic period, or by those taking time off to watch the Games. The Adecco survey indicated that only 3.5% of employers are looking to cover or increase temporary headcount over Games time, which is a concerning figure given that nearly a quarter (22.4%) of employers are worried about a loss in productivity over the same period. Will you have all the right people in the right place at the right time to keep your business on track through the Olympic period? Ensure you have a clear view of your teams whereabouts over the course of the Games, if you feel you may be short then now is the time to speak with your recruiters to ensure you can cover any gaps. It is estimated that the Games will generate 20 million additional journeys around London alone. So if you are based in or near the capital or do business with organisations that are, you need to plan for the additional travel difficulties. Of those surveyed, more than a third (38.1%) are expecting travel to be disrupted and given that the survey was UK-wide that is a significant figure. However, there are options for businesses, the obvious being to offer flexible working practices, indeed 15.5% have put in place just such plans. Embedding the Games in your place of work will also deter workers from pulling sickies, something a fifth (20%) of employers are concerned about. Assume the worst: the actuality will probably be much better. While people should remain focused on the job in hand, there will be moments across the Games when attention may be elsewhere. What s your internet policy going to be? Will people be able to follow events via the media during work time? let them know what s allowable and provide easy access to these rules. In short, plan ahead and if you plan to get behind London 2012, make sure you think things through carefully. Will you have all the right people in the right place at the right time to keep your business on track through the Olympic period? 38.1% are expecting travel to be disrupted 15.5% of businesses are offering flexible working practices

7 Page 7 of 8

8 This report provides insight from UK businesses on the impact of the London 2012 Olympic Games on their workplace. It contains the views of more than 100 businesses who reveal their plans for engaging with staff ahead of the Games. The report also provides guidance on how to improve productivity through embracing the Games.

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