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TfL officials to provide live travel advice to businesses on Twitter ahead of London 2012 Games

Transport for London (TfL), O2 and The Zetter Hotel in London will be taking part in a live Twitter chat next week to help Britain’s employers plan their transport ahead of the London 2012 Games.

Ben Plowden, director of planning, TfL surface transport, Ben Dowd, business director at O2 and Lindsey Venter, group HR director at The Zetter Hotel will come together on Twitter from11:30-12:30 on Wednesday 30 May 2012. The chat will be hosted by the official London 2012/TfL Get Ahead of the Games transport advice twitter feed (@GAOTG), using the hashtag #GAOTG.

In the Twitter chat, the guests will answer questions from large employers to small businesses on all aspects of travel planning ahead of the Games, helping firms maximise the business benefits the Games will bring.

Plowden said: “More than 61 per cent of business leaders across Europe are now using Twitter, which is why, for the first time in Games history, we’re engaging with employers via this important channel. By teaming up with business experts, this Twitter chat is an important way for us to speak to bosses directly and answer their questions.

“London will be a hugely exciting place to be this summer, with a fantastic spectacle of sporting and cultural events. Parts of the road and public transport network will be exceptionally busy during the Games and this will affect firms around Games venues and across central London. This is why we’re working closely with businesses, to ensure they have all the information they need to get ahead of the Games, while also delivering important advice and support.”

Dowd said: “We know the Games are expected to bring operating, travel and business challenges to firms, and that is why we’re planning ahead. We’ve tested our ability as an organisation to manage all the complexity that those challenges bring. Firstly, by conducting a flexible working pilot at our Slough office, where 2,500 staff worked remotely for the day. By understanding how this worked, the planning we needed to put in place and how our IT and employees needed to respond, we are now in a position to share our learnings with other organisations via Twitter, helping them to be ready and manage not only the impact of the Games but any future impact that may disrupt their business.”

Venter said: “Our employees work across a group of boutique hotels, restaurant and bars all based in central London so our main challenge during the Games is making sure staff can get to work on-time. We’re providing incentives to staff, such as free cooked breakfasts for the early bird team, plus we’re having a party room for all the team to watch the Games at lunch and dinner breaks as well as chill out and nap in if they are doing split shifts. Most importantly, we’re testing our plans ahead of time so we’re in a place to take advantage of the benefits the Games bring.”

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