World Cup failing to detract IT pros from their work

A survey conducted by the UK’s biggest IT specialist recruitment website, The IT Job Board,, has highlighted that World Cup fever is failing to reach UK IT departments. 

With only 14 percent of IT pros having booked annual leave to watch the matches, and a mere 8 percent admitting they will call in sick to watch the England games, it seems that companies won’t suffer from issues relating to staff absenteeism.

The survey polled both IT staff and employers, and when it came to employee responses, nearly two thirds (62 percent) said they won’t be watching any games during working hours. More than half of respondents suggested that their viewing habits had changed over recent years – so there is bound to be an online surge during World Cup games, even if it is just to get a quick update on the latest scores.

Only 21 percent of respondents stated that their employers had put plans in place to enable them to watch key games during working hours. 15 percent also thought their companies were stricter this year than for the previous World Cup in 2006 – perhaps a reflection of the current economic climate and then need to maximise staff activity.    

In terms of employers, 68 percent advised that they were not concerned about absenteeism issues. However, over three quarters (80 percent) were permitting flexible working hours, and exactly half (50 percent) advised they would allow staff to take time off.

Alex Farrell, managing director of The IT Job Board, commented: “It would be fair to say that a large number of commentators have suggested that – so far – the first round of the World Cup has failed to live up to expectations. It would seem that IT pros agree, with small numbers taking annual leave, and many showing their professionalism by not ‘pulling sickies’.

“It’s positive to see that businesses have put measures in place, such as flexible working. But the results lead us to believe that absenteeism simply won’t pose a problem.”



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