PUBLICATION: Times Live, 28 April 2010

Reasearch by CRS Technologies shows that while many companies are implementing no-air travel measures, they aren’t making plans for transport disruptions, absenteeism and other factors during the World Cup.

The survey asked what the general approach business was going to take to the Cup, and what changes were going to be made before the event.

According to the responses, few employers are thinking about giving employees time off, and a lot are considering a no air travel policy. Some have confirmed that they won’t be aiming for labour negotiations.

“The feedback from our survey suggests that companies are aiming for business as usual and they are hoping to minimise service disruptions. But if this is to happen they will need some basic staffing contingencies in place,” suggests James McKerrell, Chief Executive, CRS Technologies.

There is a risk of opportunist strikes, transport disruptions, and absenteeism during the event. Though most of the companies have made allowanced for internal World Cup celebrations and fan days, managers are uncertain how local fans will react.

“Obviously many decision makers are concerned about operational efficiency and human resources remains a critical component of general day-to-day business. No company can compete effectively if their core operation is hampered by a less than complete staff compliment or disruption or downtime.

“Since South Africa heard we won the right to host the World Cup, companies have been working furiously to ensure contingency plans are in place. While many managers will attest, there is simply no way to plan for everything, the smart HR manager, should have run through some solid scenario planning exercises,” McKerrell concludes.