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London 2012
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Business Survival Guide to the Olympics


Get your company fit for Day Three

Free training to help manage the Olympic crowds is getting firms full attention, says Will Freeman
S 30 July in your firms diary? London celebrated one year to the Olympic Games last Wednesday, but Day Three, on Monday 30 July 2012, is the critical date for business, when crowds of sports fans and the demands of a full working day will intersect for the first time. New research shows the banking and legal sectors are leading the way in Olympic preparedness, but every company needs to be ready to help keep London, and their own affairs, running smoothly.


of businesses believe they are on track for the Olympics, up from

of businesses have planned for the Olympics;

intend to, but have yet to start.

last year


According to research from London 2012 and Transport for London (TfL), sixty-five firms in the banking and finance sectors have already registered for Site-Specific Advice (SSA). This free service provides travel advice to businesses located in areas affected by the Games if they employ over 200 staff. The free one-to-one sessions include advice on planning staff business travel during busy periods, tips on maintaining service continuity and sharing best practice from firms that already have plans in place.


With less than a year to go, now is the time to plan. In the last six weeks, TfL has seen a 100 per cent increase in sign-ups for their advice service, but while banking, law and management consultancy firms collectively representing nearly a quarter of a million staff have signed up for SSA training, certain sectors, including recruitment and manufacturing, currently have only a single firm involved. Dont leave it too late, or your staff will risk being the ones left at the back of the queue come Day Three.

In 2010, of businesses said there was no need to plan for the Olympics; just


believe that now.

Meticulous and early planning is key to getting the most out of the Games and Id urge every business, big and small, to act now and get ready for London 2012. Boris Johnson, Mayor of London
Source: Deloitte

TOP TIPS | TRAVEL REDUCTION London 2012 and TfL are asking businesses to consider ways which will help reduce their overall need to travel including: l Staggering the start and finish times of working days l Providing the facilities for staff to work from home l Stocking up on non-perishable items well before the Games l Arranging earlier or later deliveries l Managing annual leave l Temporarily relocating employees or altering their working hours l Helping staff re-plan their travel l Using conference/ video/web calls l Encouraging and enabling staff to cycle and walk

Help is here to plan for 2012

HE task of planning for Londons Olympic influx might seem daunting, but there are plenty of tools, courtesy of the experts, to make getting your company in shape for the big event a walk in the Olympic Park. Here we list the key resources to make your life easier.

to sign up simply email or visit for more information and advice.

If you want to start planning without leaving your desk, a brand new online planning tool has been developed so that tailored advice is just a click away. Designed for businesses of all sizes, the tool poses questions about staff, business travel, visitors, suppliers and deliveries. It then calculates specific suggestions for your company to take action on, and points you will need to bear in mind. You can start planning now by visiting and selecting Make your Plan.

Free Site-Specific Advice is available from Transport for London (TfL) for companies in affected areas with more than 200 employees (see above). From August, companies that employ 200+ workers across multiple sites are also being offered this advice, and TfL are hoping to work with at least 100 multisite companies. Firms with fewer than 200 employees in areas that will be affected by the Games can get help too. More than 50 free workshops are being rolled out across the country. These drop-in sessions will take place once a fortnight until the Games begin, starting in early August, and cover topics including how local roads will be managed, how to optimise deliveries and how to offer flexible working during Games time, and are specially designed to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SME). For businesses of all sizes, it is easy

action plan for your company. Begin by talking with staff about their travel needs, try and encourage them to reduce non-essential travel and make plans for essential journeys. You can download an action plan template at Once you have your plan, dont forget the next step is to test it and to tell your business all about it.

Dont let your plan get out of date. Register at for regular email updates. Also keep in touch with other companies in your area to see if you can coordinate, for instance on deliveries. Remember to stock up on office essentials and to get any pending maintenance work done well in advance of the Games. Daniel Ritterband, the Mayor of Londons Director of Marketing and 2012 Communications, says: The 2012 Games are a massive opportunity for businesses in the capital and we expect international visitors to spend more than 700m during this time. That is why we are offering firms the chance to take part in a range of programmes that will help them manage the impact of the Games on their operations and at the same time allow them to make the most of this wonderful occasion.


Mark Evers, director of Games transport for TfL offers a few simple steps to keep your firm running smoothly next summer. First of all, check if your business is in a travel hotspot. TfL has created a series of maps to make this clear (see our four examples on p22-23). These show exactly how local roads and public transport are likely to be affected. Secondly, if you are in or near a hotspot, check the timing of Olympic and Paralympic events to see when it is likely to be an issue ( Next, you will need to create an


Business Survival Guide to the Olympics


Learning from the Olympics of Vancouver

UK employers can learn a lot from the trials and tribulations of Canadas businesses in the Winter Games of 2010, says Philip Salter
EARNING from the past is the path to progress and so Vancouvers experience of hosting the Winter Olympics in 2010 has a lot to teach us. Despite the inevitable challenges, it was warmly and roundly considered a great success, with most businesses ready and willing to adapt and benefit from the unique opportunities afforded by being caught up in this colossal event.

found it difficult and time-consuming travelling to the workplace, making alternative work arrangements, such as working from home, viable solutions to maintain productivity for many companies.

Despite the tests, there are huge opportunities for businesses in the Olympic cities to prosper. Fletcher says the 2010 Games were an opportunity for businesses to transform themselves, as they were forced to reassess their basic processes and look at them more critically. He says the Games provided long-term benefits for local businesses and the economy by establishing Vancouver on the world stage, helping to attract new jobs and investment to the area. Davis notes the most important lasting benefit for most participating businesses was the networking connections brought on by the Games. He notes his consulting company was able to work with a number of international companies that they would never have had the opportunity to work with without the Games. He says: This was a common theme: local businesses getting the opportunity to work on the international stage. Also, after the G a m e s , Fletcher says improvements in public transportation, roads, bridges and airports benefited businesses as they and their workforce are major users of this infrastructure. So a little temporary strain can lead to longer-term gains. Hosting an Olympic Games requires an effort of Herculean proportions for all involved not only the athletes. The coordination required is supremely complex. But this is no reason to approach the games with pessimism despite the challenges, the coming disruption will also present opportunities for Londons businesses to look inward at their internal processes and outward at how they can benefit from the attention of the rest of the world. As Davis advises: Get involved early, get as much information as you can and enjoy the ride.

There can be no doubt that the Olympic Games are an interruption to the status quo for most firms. Michael Davis of Reputations, a Vancouver-based public relations firm, found the two biggest challenges for businesses were transportation and workforce management. He explains that for businesses close to the key venues there were major disruptions in the delivery of goods, taxis, cars and transit for employees. He warns: Security requirements can shut you down. Similarly, Paul Fletcher, managing partner of Deloitte in Vancouver, points out supply chain disruptions were also a reality during the Games. He explains: Leading up to, and during the Games, businesses had to reassess their supply chain in order to get their products to market or receive goods, as transportation to and from the city, as well as within it, operated under different scenarios. This situation was compounded by the fact that suppliers were facing the same challenges. Employers need to be aware that many of their staff will want to watch the Olympics this was certainly the case in Vancouver. Davis notes some companies simply shut down, some gave employees vacation, while a number of schools moved the break to coincide with the Games further complicating some peoples lives. Fletcher says: For many businesses, the Games meant reassessing some long-lived policies on ways of doing business and serving customers. He says businesses found that a number of their employees planned on taking a holiday during the Games resulting in a lack of resources. According to Fletcher some workers

Pictures: GETTY

Olympic Opportunities in Canada

saw the Olympics as an opportunity to gain business



in the media and leisure sectors saw an advantage

in the retail sector saw an advantage


said their firms were continuing to enjoy higher sales

Source: BT

reported lasting benefits from the Olympics


Business Survival Guide to the Olympics


The challenge over the next 12 months is to give spectators and businesses the knowledge they need to have a great summer.

The man behind Londons new bullet trains is making sure the 2012 Games run on time
The Olympic Delivery Authoritys transport director says plan for a great summer, writes Marc Sidwell

S YOU travel to work, did you notice how roomy Stratford station is looking? Or that certain trains seem longer than before? Or, if you use the Jubilee Line, that more trains are running every hour? Its all part of the way in which Londons transport system is being steadily geared up ahead of next summers Olympic Games.

Age: 54 Family: Married, with one teenage son Lives: Parsons Green Education: Bachelor of Civil Engineering and MBA, Cranfield Career: Hugh was previously managing director of an infrastructure company and before that led the team that operated and maintained London Underground. Hobby: Sleeping Favourite sports: Rugby, tennis, cricket Sporting heroes: Jonathan Edwards, the Athens 2004 4x100m Team GB relay team

The Olympic Delivery Authoritys transport mastermind, Hugh Sumner, is passionate about what has been achieved. The great thing for London is that those things that might have dribbled out over many years have been accelerated and theyre here now, theyre in use, serving Londoners and serving Londoners proud. The 6.5bn transport legacy of the Games is more or less all up and running, from high-speed bullet trains that, rebranded as the Javelin shuttle, will carry crowds from St Pancras to Stratford International in seven minutes, to improvements on the East London Line and 50 per cent longer trains on the Docklands Light Railway (DLR). At Stratford International, the stations capacity has been trebled, with the rebuilt concourse completed in January. A DLR extension to Woolwich Arsenal has been delivered, and one to Stratford International is due to open in the next few weeks. Still, Sumner isnt complacent that these improvements, which London will keep for the long term, will make the extra traffic of the Games disappear. In simple terms, zone lets call it zone one-and-a-half is going to be very very busy during Games time. Similarly the road systems between Earls Court and the Blackwall tunnel. The sheer scale is stupendous. Youre talking about 26 world championships all occurring at the same time in the same place, with cultural events that could double that. Even though weve done all this work, the

Confident, but not complacent, Hugh Sumner has geared up Londons transport for the Olympics Picture: Micha Theiner /CITY AM

Even though weve done all this work, the reality is that London is going to be very busy were hosting the world.

reality is that London is going to be very busy were hosting the world. But he does see the inevitable congestion as manageable: By everyone doing things differently, were going to have a crackerjack summer. The challenge in the next 12 months is to give spectators and businesses knowledge and understanding so they can have a really good summer next year. He points out that the advanced state of planning already means that those with Olympic tickets (which include a nine-zone travelcard for the day) can go online, plan their journeys and book their transport. And Sumner is delighted with the response from City firms to Transport for Londons Site-Specific Advice programme, although he acknowledges there is still further to go. The trick for us is to work with everybody to ensure that its sport on the front page, not transport. Were working a lot with the freight industry on replenishment issues its probably not a good idea to run out of beer in the middle of a Games.

In the end, his advice is simple: Start thinking now, because your entire supply chain is going to have to be thought through. Whats your leave policy next year? What are you going to do when your people are all volunteers and they havent bothered telling you? Government departments, he says, are planning to reduce their travel footprint by 50 per cent, and are carrying out practice runs in the near future. Just as his task for the next six months is to run load-testing on the transport infrastructure, firms need to take the initiative and test their alternative travel plans well in advance. Sumner seems surprisingly calm given the pressure that he will be under if things go wrong. He says, I recognise the gravity and the magnitude of what weve embarked on. He smiles, but we do big quite well as a nation think of the Royal Wedding. Sumners vision of an Olympic Games centred on public transport, walking and cycling looks well on track. But to enjoy it, be sure to start your own planning now.


Business Survival Guide to the Olympics




AKING better use of flexible and home working is a key area of focus for Deloitte in the run up to 2012. Quite simply, our people cannot do their jobs if they are struggling to move around the city. It wont help the Games organisers or Londons transport authorities either, if unnecessary journeys clog up the network. Transport for London aims to reduce background traffic in parts of the capital by 30 per cent and has urged businesses to reduce the number of commutes by their staff to help. The request appears to have had a positive response. Deloitte research suggests that over a third of companies intend to allow greater use of flexible or home working during London 2012. Yet for many, there is much work still to be done. I chair Deloittes own Games Readiness Steering Group, which was created to assess the potential impacts on our business and consider any actions required to ensure we deliver the best possible client service during the Games. The group consists of representatives from a number of areas, including human resources, IT and procurement.

Before implementing or expanding flexible working policies, businesses need a set of planning assumptions about the impact on their operations. This summer, Deloitte will assess client demand and examine our resourcing patterns. We will then survey our people to understand their intentions around annual leave in the summer of 2012. This will allow us to pinpoint when we might face pressure from staff unavailability, when flexible and home working is appropriate and when we are likely to need our people in the office or at client sites. Flexible working will not work for every business and is hard to adopt in certain industries, but will certainly form part of Deloittes preparations for next summer. While getting this right for Games time is vital, I would urge businesses to think long-term. London 2012 should be a catalyst for businesses to introduce new, smarter ways of working across the organisation, resulting in improved workforce resilience. This should be one of the legacy benefits from the Games. But businesses need to move quickly. Home working has implications for IT departments that need to be factored in. Deloitte has fasttracked a number of projects to ensure technology is in place to make the experience seamless for our staff and positive for clients. Next summer will be business as unusual and companies will need to think and operate differently to continue to deliver the levels of service expected by their clients. David Gill is a partner at Deloitte, the official professional services provider to London 2012.

Faster, cheaper, happier Picture: GETTY

Home working doesnt mean less productivity

Individuals do a better job with more freedom, says Will Freeman

Think flexibly to stay ahead in 2012

Picture: ALAMY

ORKING from home wont suit every company, but providing greater opportunities to staff to do so can have real business benefits. According to BT, while the Olympic Games provides a timely business case to make the leap to greater flexibility, that decision has the potential to deliver returns that outlast the summers sporting triumphs. And BTs research in the wake of the Vancouver Games found that a substantial 30 per cent of businesses would in retrospect have taken the chance to improve flexible working facilities for their staff. In this area, BT leads by example, having encouraged flexible working for years. More than 70,000 of BTs staff are equipped to work flexibly and around 13,000 work from home. The result has been harder work from employees. Jon Lane, business development and partnership director at BT, says we find that home workers are 21 per cent more productive than office-based colleagues. They also take less sick leave. He adds, we have also made significant savings from reduced accommodation costs, and savings from recruitment and induction costs through better staff retention. Theres no question that in our age of digitised information, distance is not the barrier it used to be. Transport disruption and failure to reach the office are no

longer reasons to stop work, according to Keith Tilley, managing director UK for SunGard Availability Services, a company specialising in business continuity management. Tilley says: The latest developments in recovery allow workers who are normally tied to a single location to work effectively from home in the event of a business disruption.

Still, technology is not enough. A firm determined to explore these options needs to create a cultural shift in the workplace. One of BTs solutions has been to create a headquarters that is a resource base for the whole company, rather than a cloistered head office hive. Just 1,600 workstations are enough to support 8,000 BT staff for whom the building is available to use when they are in central London. Hugh Sumner, director of transport for the Olympic Delivery Authority, says: A good way to reduce non-essential employee travel during the Games is to encourage staff to work from home. Using alternative methods for meetings, such as conference calls, video conferencing and web conferencing will allow businesses to continue running smoothly in the run up to, and during, the 2012 Games. Again, it takes a culture shift to adopt such conferencing technology, but the results are impressive once the leap is

made. Telephone conferencing eliminates an estimated 859,784 face-to-face meetings a year for BT, and a survey of their staff found 81 per cent now see conferencing as an essential tool that they could not perform as well without. Flexible working promises more productive and happier staff, not to mention fewer office outgoings. 2012 may have put flexi-working to the forefront, but now may be the time to consider committing to its long-term promise.

BTs home-working revolution in numbers:
l 13,000 staff working from home l 70,000+ staff equipped to work flexibly l 1,600 workstations in the London HQ l 8,000 staff using the London HQ l 21% increase in productivity l 103m in productivity gains each year l 500m savings on office space each year l 135m savings on travel each year l 859,784 fewer face-to-face meetings a year l 81% of staff say conferencing is essential l French office cut from eight to three floors


Business Survival Guide to the Olympics


Help to keep London running:

Impact of the London 2012 Games in the CITY
During the Olympic Games (27 July-12 August 2012) During the Paralympic Games (29 August-9 September 2012)

Impact of the London 2012 Games in VICTORIA

During the Olympic Games (27 July-12 August 2012) During the Paralympic Games (29 August-9 September 2012)


THE FOLLOWING IS PREDICTED TO HAPPEN WITHOUT ACTION BY BUSINESSES TO REDUCE THE NUMBER OF JOURNEYS Jubilee Line; Central Line; DLR; Northern Line Delays of over an hour possible, particularly at Bank for the DLR. Avoid these lines where possible. Most affected on weekdays 8-11am, 4-8pm and 10pm to last train. District Line; Circle Line; Metropolitan Line Delays of up to 15 minutes possible; delays vary at different times and different stations. Waterloo & City Line This line will be signicantly affected at peak commuter times. There could be delays of up to an hour in accessing train services. Only use this line for essential journeys. London Overground This line will be signicantly affected at Stratford. Possible delays in accessing train services on the Stratford to Richmond/Clapham Junction route. Liverpool Street (mainline rail): 15 minutes during the Olympic Games but none during Paralympics. Liverpool Street (Tube): Delays of up to an hour during the Olympic Games; delays of up to 15 minutes during the Paralympic Games. Bank (Tube and DLR): Delays of around an hour possible throughout. 30 July exceptionally busy.


THE FOLLOWING IS PREDICTED TO HAPPEN WITHOUT ACTION BY BUSINESSES TO REDUCE THE NUMBER OF JOURNEYS Jubilee Line; Central Line Delays of over an hour possible. Avoid these lines where possible. Most affected on weekdays 811am, 4-8pm and 10pm to last train. Piccadilly Line Delays of over 30 minutes on some parts of the line, consider alternative routes if possible. District Line; Circle Line Delays of up to 15 minutes possible. Victoria (mainline rail): No signicant increase in passenger use expected during the Paralympic Games, but delays of over 30 minutes possible during the Olympic Games. Late evening crowding due to people leaving events. Victoria (Tube) and Green Park: Delays of up to an hour in accessing train services during the Olympic Games. Most affected weekdays 8-10am, 5-8pm (Green Park) and 10pm to last train. Late evening crowding due to people leaving events at Hyde Park.

Hyde Park Corner and Knightsbridge: Delays of up to 15 minutes during the Olympic Games, but no signicant increase expected during the Paralympic Games. Busiest dates 31 July, 1, 6, 7 and 9 August. Late evening crowding due to people leaving events at Hyde Park.


Business Survival Guide to the Olympics


plan around Olympic hotspots

Impact of the London 2012 Games in WESTMINSTER
During the Olympic Games (27 July-12 August 2012) During the Paralympic Games (29 August-9 September 2012)

Impact of the London 2012 Games in CANARY WHARF

During the Olympic Games (27 July-12 August 2012) During the Paralympic Games (29 August-9 September 2012)

Pictures: GETTY and REUTERS




* for hotspot maps 1-26, visit

THE FOLLOWING IS PREDICTED TO HAPPEN WITHOUT ACTION BY BUSINESSES TO REDUCE THE NUMBER OF JOURNEYS Jubilee Line; Central Line; DLR; Waterloo & City Line Delays of around an hour possible at peak times. Northern Line: Delays of over 30 minutes possible. District Line; Circle Line; Victoria Line; Bakerloo Line Delays of up to 15 minutes possible (not during the Paralympic Games for the Bakerloo Line).

THE FOLLOWING IS PREDICTED TO HAPPEN WITHOUT ACTION BY BUSINESSES TO REDUCE THE NUMBER OF JOURNEYS Jubilee Line; Central Line; DLR There could be delays of over an hour in accessing train services. Avoid these lines where possible. Most affected on weekdays 8-11am, 4-8pm and 10pm to last train. Canary Wharf: Busiest dates are 30 July and 31 August. For more information, and all 26 maps of affected areas (locations shown on the map, right), see