Struggling to manage your workforce around the World Cup football matches?

June 22, 2018 | Workforce Management

world cup

The FIFA World Cup in Russia is well and truly underway! As much as we all love football, it can have a negative effect on your workforce productivity and efficiency – unless handled right.

It has been calculated* that the 2014 World Cup saw as many as 131 million UK working days lost. People didn’t turn up for work because they either stayed up late to celebrate or commiserate England’s performance. The England versus Wales game alone (during the Euro 2016) cost the UK economy an estimated £269 million in unauthorised leave!

We have combined our workforce management expert knowledge with top tips gathered from around the web and produced a short mini-guide on how to get the best out of your people during the busy match schedule.


The Trade Union Congress advised that managers should allow people to work from home or start early or late where possible. This will ensure you don’t score an own goal by refusing to be flexible with requests from staff over the coming weeks.

Strong Squad

Not everyone wants to watch every single game but make sure you plan your resources effectively. If there is a request for time off, or to swap a shift, perhaps you can find a substitute with the same skill set amongst your workforce? Remember, the fixture list is set long in advance and it can work as your resource planner.

Happy = productive

Indeed, many businesses adopted a more lenient approach towards the tournament with the underlying message that a happy workplace is a more productive workplace! Why not provide a TV or a spare computer screen on company premises to show matches? This way you will avoid your workforce secretly peeking at their phone every few minutes!


With 32 nations and 63 matches, you should plan ahead to minimise disruptions the tournament can cause, particularly the games that are taking place during your shift or office hours. Although England’s games will be in highest demand if there are other nationalities amongst your workforce check their match days/times too.

Reschedule the company’s workflow around the matches to ensure you’re not hitting peak demand just when the kick-off starts!

Employee engagement

Sporting events are known to bring people together – why not make the most out of this? As well as allowing staff to watch matches, you could put up some decorations around the office, for example, flags of the countries involved. This could be a great way of engaging and motivating your workforce! More relaxed dress code, an atmosphere of excitement and unity in supporting the team all contribute to a positive impact the World Cup can have on employees’ relations.


Our software OPX is a one-stop solution specifically developed to digitally transform back office operations so that you can accommodate for various scenarios (World Cup including!). Highly modular and quick to implement, OPX supports the end to end processes of back-office operations from the digital capture of incoming work, back office workforce optimisation, robotic process automation to the automated output of customer communications.

For more information, please contact us today.


*Source: Quinyx

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