• >
  • ...
  • >
  • How to prepare for last-minute staff substitutes ahead of the Women’s World Cup 2023

How to prepare for last-minute staff substitutes ahead of the Women’s World Cup 2023

Prepare for team changes! Get advice to manage annual leave and unplanned absences ahead of The Women’s World Cup 2023.

Thursday, Jul 20, 2023
2 min read

The Matildas are set to take over the fields for The Women’s World Cup 2023. Co-hosted this year by Australia and New Zealand.

Our Matildas will be facing Ireland in their first World Cup group game on July 20 in Stadium Australia, Sydney. The full tournament will run from July 20th to August 20th, so be prepared…your employees might decide to pass on coming to work and take some annual leave days.

If they do—don’t panic and call off the match! Here are 3 tips to support you and your team during big events like the World Cup.

1) Stay ahead of the game

Making sure you have an effective absence management process before any big event is key to avoiding unnecessary disruption to your business. Gustavsson wouldn’t get caught without an effective game strategy and neither should you!

BrightHR’s annual book of work records (2022), shows there was an 11% increase in holiday requests the day that the Geelong Cats played the Sydney Swans at the AFL Grand Final in Melbourne. In 2022, more than a million Australians tuned in to watch the World Cup final at two o’clock in the morning. And more than 1.7 million people watched the Socceroos play against Argentina, which made it the most-watched game of the World Cup for SBS.

If those numbers aren’t enough of a heads up that it’s time to brace your holiday planner for the month ahead, we don’t know what is.

Workforce planning is key if you want to make sure your team takes home the win and stays as productive as possible.

2) Give lateness the boot

We’ve checked the scoreboards and this year’s Women’s World Cup has already sold more than one million tickets. Making the tournament well on its way to becoming the most attended standalone women’s sporting event of all time.

With the 2023 tournament being the first World Cup to be hosted by two nations and include 32 teams, it’s shaping up to be a record-breaking year for football fans.

Who can resist being caught up in the excitement? Big sporting and global events can have a huge impact on your team’s lateness and last-minute absences.

Don’t sub your staff! Ask Bright Lightning: How can I minimise the number of unplanned absences when the World Cup is on?

3) Don’t sit on the sidelines, set clear guidelines for a fair game

Making sure your employee contracts are up to date is a must if you want to set clear boundaries with your staff. It can be useful to remind employees in advance of sporting events what your rules are.

With the Matildas playing on home turf, many employees may take days off to see it all unfold in person. Or staff might want to follow the game on their phones or personal devices. Whether you allow this will come down to your policy on using the internet and mobile phones at work.

It’s your choice whether you allow staff to follow the game during work hours, but it’s important to lay ground rules, especially if you work in a customer-facing industry or an industry where absolute concentration is necessary for safety.

As long as guidelines have been set, there should be no need for a sending-off. But you might have to issue the odd yellow card!

If staff breach the rules, having a one-on-one chat could be your first approach. For repeated or more serious breaches you should get the right advice to make sure the way you address staff is proportionate to the circumstances, and follow a formal disciplinary procedure if necessary.

Need more advice?

Ask away, we’ve got lightning-fast answers for Australian business owners and employers powered by experienced HR experts.

Share this article