Cleaning London during the Olympics
For cleaning to take place in London during the Olympics some useful guidelines are listed below.
Ensure that workplace policies are up-to-date and cover all cleaner’s behaviour that might be affected by the Olympics. These are likely to be policies related to, for example, absence. For some issues, it may be more appropriate to create a short-term policy that specifically deals with the Olympics, e.g. approach to watching the Games during working hours. Communicating policy updates to employees, making employees aware of additional monitoring during the Games and explaining the consequences of not following correct procedure should help to reduce unscheduled absence and unauthorised conduct.
Employers should not wait to start talking about policy updates, particularly those to do with managing leave and working hours. To help prevent unexpected absenteeism during the Olympics, employers need to communicate to cleaners that they should book annual leave well in advance of the Games, applying your usual authorisation methods, e.g. “first come, first served”.
Plan for Problems with Travel
Cleaners, particularly those based in London, may have difficulty getting to and from work during the Games. Cleaners should be made aware of the need to follow company procedures by notifying their employer about unauthorised absence and transport disruption. Employers may require that employees take reasonable steps to find alternative means of getting to work, but should also consider how they can be more flexible themselves.
Employers should consider whether or not flexible working arrangements during the Olympic Games would be suitable for their business, e.g. varying start and finish times.
Develop a Discipline Plan
Instil in cleaners that, whilst you are willing to be more flexible during the Games, you still expect employees to stick to the rules and anyone found to be taking advantage will be dealt with. Stick to your contractual disciplinary procedure to avoid claims of breach of contract, and always ensure that investigations into alleged misconduct are properly and fairly investigated.
It should be highlighted to employees that not everyone will be supporting Great Britain in the Olympics. Employers should be aware that sporting enthusiasm can sometimes turn into racist or sexist abuse, which must not be tolerated. Employers should make sure it is known that equality and harassment policies apply as much to discussions at work about sport as they do to any other subject.