Over half of Irish workers will have no form of Christmas party this year 5 months ago

Over half of Irish workers will have no form of Christmas party this year

Virtual staff Christmas pints, anyone?

Just over two in five workplaces in Ireland will have no Christmas party this year, with a further one in 10 saying that theirs will be postponed until Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.

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With Level 5 restrictions in place nationwide until 1 December and employees in non-essential jobs urged to work from home, it is perhaps little surprise that only 14% of workplaces plan on hosting a Christmas party of some description in the coming weeks.

Of that 14%, according to a survey by IrishJobs.ie, 9% of workplaces plan to host a virtual party, 3% plan to have a workplace party while observing social distancing guidelines and 2% plan to secure a booking in a restaurant or pub if permitted to do so under government guidelines.

26% of the 2,610 employees surveyed, meanwhile, didn’t know whether there would be a Christmas party this year, while 8% said their workplace never hosted them.

Regarding this year in particular, 40% of employees said it would be irresponsible to host a Christmas party given the current risks related to Covid-19, with a further 30% saying it would be more trouble than it’s worth.

94% of people said that, prior to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, their workplaces held regular social events. Since lockdown in March, 81% of employees said they no longer have any workplace social activities.

While only one in 10 employees say they have met with work colleagues in person since March, half of respondents said they had participated in virtual social activities, such as quizzes and comedy shows, with very mixed results:

  • 20% of employees said they do not enjoy virtual workplace socialising
  • 17% said they do enjoy virtual workplace socialising
  • 12% said they enjoyed it at the beginning, but less so now
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Commenting on the findings, Orla Moran, General Manager at IrishJobs.ie said it is important to continue to look for creative ways to overcome the practical challenges posed by the impact of Covid-19 in the workplace.

“Whether it is a virtual after work event, or a get together in a public space once Government guidelines allow, a conscious effort should be made to ensure that there is dedicated time allocated for workplace socialising in the weeks ahead to help boost morale and recognise the hard work and resilience of employees at the close of a uniquely challenging year,” Moran said.

“As we look towards 2021, early indications of successful Covid-19 vaccines help to remind us of the light at the end of the tunnel – and hopefully by this time next year we can all look forward to a well-deserved Christmas get together.”