Staff watching sport at their desk could be damaging your business

Between the World Cup, the Tour de France and Commonwealth Games, Brits are spoilt for choice for sporting events, and there are more devices to watch on than ever before. However, according to the TalkTalk Business survey of 2,000 full time workers, the faithful office PC remains is the preferred choice of device for most respondents, while others clearly favour the dual-screen approach, as employee-owned smartphones and tablets also proved popular with workers.

Many organisations are putting measures in place to handle the extra pressure. Some 39 per cent of organisations are implementing IT policies, but the remaining 61 per cent of employees say either there is no policy in place or they don’t know what it is. Only 11 per cent of those surveyed say their bosses are restricting viewing to outside of office hours, while just seven per cent will implement an outright ban on watching sport in the office.

In addition to the jam-packed sporting calendar, businesses also need to consider requests for flexible working hours. More than one in five of workers surveyed planned to take advantage of flexible working. In 29 per cent of organisations, employees will be permitted to work from home over the summer, while 20 per cent of employers will provide remote server access to homeworking staff.

“It’s great to see businesses embracing this summer’s sporting action and taking steps to ensure employees are making the most of the season”, said Charles Bligh, managing director of TalkTalk Business.

“As ever there needs to be a degree of caution; if employees are streaming high-quality content from various different devices at a time, the increased traffic is bound to have an impact, meaning having a business-grade network infrastructure in place is essential.”

There are plenty of proactive steps businesses can consider such as screening the biggest events somewhere in the office, or offering staff the choice to work from home. By taking that route, bosses avoid damaging office morale while also reducing the burden on their network.