Businesses are not ready for a pandemicOver a third of UK businesses have no response plans in place to help them continue to operate in the event of a pandemic, which may include absence management plans.

Attendees at a meeting at Whitehall heard how 38 per cent of firms had no response scheme to deal with such an issue, while it was also told how public transport such as trains, buses and planes may not be able to function due to staff shortages.

And even the UK’s digital infrastructure may come under pressure as employees work from home in order to prevent infection, should swine flu become a pandemic.

HR staff may wish to take preventative action by ensuring they have an absent management plan in place in the event that their workforce is struck by such an illness.

Such measures could see organisations following in the steps of Melton council, which has allowed its staff to work flexibly after four employees were struck with swine flu, Melton Times reports.