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Government’s flexible working road tested

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This week will see the government’s plans for civil servants to undertake flexible working during the Olympic Games given a dry run.

Many of those in the employ of the state will endeavour to work from home during the event to bypass public transport by cycling into work.

Further measures include allowing civil servants to carry out tasks from any government building as mobile working is expected to be one of the legacies for office workers of the 2012 London Olympics.

Allowing office workers to see how their working habits may change is a good idea before they have to do it out of necessity during the event.

A spokesman for the Department for Transport said: “This is about encouraging staff to reduce the impact of their travel by either walking or cycling, changing their route of travel to and from work, retiming their working day to avoid the busiest periods or working from home.”

It turns out that the government may have chosen a good week in which to encourage its staff to work from home as there is widespread disruption due to the snow.

A further concern for the government is that there will be extra strain on the internet during the Olympics meaning that some businesses may find connection slow or nonexistent.

It is thought that some internet providers may cap data allowances during the busiest periods which could have an effect on businesses.

Those who are working from home may also find it difficult to do their jobs and stay in contact with clients if there are problems with the internet.

The new head of the civil service, Sir Bob Kerslake, has expressed the desire that moves towards flexible and mobile working during the Games become a permanent feature of life at Whitehall.

As well as saving time for employees it helps to cut both costs and carbon emissions through business travel.