General Election 2024: Polling day playbook for employers

Get the lowdown on what UK employers need to know for Polling Day 2024!

First published on Tuesday, Jun 25, 2024

Last updated on Tuesday, Jun 25, 2024

5 min read

The General Election is fast approaching, with the 4th of July 2024 earmarked as the official polling day of the UK Parliamentary showdown.

As the last General Election took place almost five years ago in December 2019, many employers are left wondering how polling day could potentially impact their workplace.

To help, we’ve outlined everything you need to know for this upcoming polling day to keep your operation running smoothly.

What happens on polling day?

On polling day, the curtains of the polling booths are drawn back from 7am to 10pm, inviting the electorate to cast their votes.

While this is a significant day for UK citizens, it is generally business as usual for employers, who are not required to provide time off for employees to vote.

That being said, it may be in your best interests to allow flexible working hours for employees to vote. 76% of employers felt that flexible working has a positive impact on staff retention, especially during election season, as well as boosting staff morale.

Consider using a time-tracking app like Blip to easily know when and where employees are doing their work to facilitate this without compromising on productivity.

What’s the potential disruption to my workplace?

Transport delays

Transport delays will be more frequent on polling day, potentially affecting many of your employees due to increased traffic and congestion. Be mindful of this and consider adopting more leniency around punctuality.

Keeping on top of any lateness or unplanned absence with BrightHR’s streamlined absence management software, manage absence on the go, from anywhere.

Cybersecurity threats

There is also a heightened risk of cybersecurity threats during the election season. Employers might be exposed to more frequent phishing emails this summer with government institutions, media outlets, tech firms, and infrastructure providers especially vulnerable.

That’s why it’s wise to implement a robust cybersecurity training program for all staff, emphasising the importance of strong passwords and awareness of phishing attempts.

BrightHR offer a comprehensive e-learning course covering the fundamentals of protecting yourself from cyber security threats with BrightLearn, available to BrightHR customers.

Workplace debates

TV debates between Conservative leader Rishi Sunak and Labour leader Keir Starmer, have shaped the past few weeks, and let’s just say the political boxing gloves were well and truly off!

So it’s fair to say that the election season often brings a surge of emotions to the surface. It’s natural for your employees to have personal views on the country’s direction, and it’s crucial for employers to respect the right to individual political belief. But setting clear expectations about workplace political discussions is essential to maintain a respectful and productive work environment.

For more advice on this topic, ask Bright BrAInbox: Can I stop employees from talking about the General Election in work?

What are my responsibilities as an employer leading up to polling day?

As an employer, it’s key to stay impartial during the election season, but it’s equally vital to embrace your role in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

By encouraging your employees to vote, you’re showing that your company cares about more than just profits. It’s about being a business that’s invested in the community and the future of the country and presents a great opportunity to stand out from the competition.

Consider providing neutral, informative resources for employees to keep informed ahead of the election and facilitate the voting process as much as you can.

Prepare for BIG employment law changes that come with the election

No matter which party wins, you’ll need to review your HR policies and documents. It’s easy to get lost amidst multiple manifestos and polling day panic, which is why our experts are running exclusive sessions to discuss the results of the election and what this means for employment law and your business.

Major policy changes in employment law are expected, and savvy business owners will prepare accordingly.

So, sign up for our next webcast on Tuesday 9th of July, and get a full debrief on the freshly announced election results. Find out: * How a new government could impact your business  * The timescales for the implementation of new policies  * Which HR policies and procedures you’ll need to update  * How BrightHR’s end-to-end solutions can help you navigate change 

Need more advice on navigating election changes or beyond?

Our BrightAdvice team is ready to help you navigate any change, come what may. Plus, BrightAdvice is unlimited, and you can call us as often as you need.

Get instant support here: 0800 470 2432

Not a BrightAdvice customer? Learn more about how we can support your business through change here.

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