Technology companies set Olympic flexible working standards

Technology companies are taking a lead in preparing businesses for disruption caused by the London Olympics next summer by changing their flexible working rules.

Technology companies are taking a lead in preparing businesses for disruption caused by the London Olympics next summer by changing their flexible working rules.

Research from Deloitte reveals that technology firms are leading the way in preparing contingency plans. With the Olympics expected to boost business, companies in the technology sector are working to ensure they don't miss out.

Almost half of technology firms (48%) expect staff unavailability to be the biggest disruptive factor and are already planning for it. A total of 46% are planning to change their flexible/home working practices to ensure staff can combine watching the Olympics with work.

One fifth of technology companies plan to provide live streaming of the games in offices - but a quarter said they will not allow staff to watch the Olympics during work time.

“Reality has hit home for UK technology businesses and they are now more aware of the potential for disruption during the six weeks of competition. That technology companies are more concerned by these issues is good news, not bad, because it means they can prepare,” said Rick Cudworth, head of business continuity and resilience at Deloitte.

“It is positive that technology firms are leading the way in changing their flexible or working at home practices; this will provide a legacy benefit of enhanced resilience and flexible working well beyond the games.”

Deloitte also revealed that 34% of technology firms intend to review their crisis response plans. Cudworth said this is not enough: “We think this figure should be higher. Businesses should also consider engaging with suppliers to shore up supply chains and testing their crisis response plans. Ultimately, these actions will help companies to mitigate, or at least minimise, disruption and make the most of the games for their employees and their business.”

The second biggest concern for technology companies was transport disruption with 36% expecting it to present a problem, 34% expecting problems to be caused by a lack of resources, such as hotels, and 32% expecting security incidents.

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