Workers at Lloyd’s of London have been banned from drinking during the day after around half of disciplinary cases were found to relate to alcohol, but does not affect the brokers and underwriters from other firms who are based in the same building.
The insurance company has told its employees that they are not allowed to drink alcohol between 9am and 5pm.
Lloyd’s said it had been considering the move for some time to bring it into line with “industry norms”.
In an internal memo to staff, Lloyd’s said an examination of grievance and disciplinary cases over the last two years found that about half were related to alcohol:
“The London market historically had a reputation for daytime drinking but that has been changing and Lloyd’s has a duty to be a responsible employer, and provide a healthy working environment. The policy we’ve introduced aligns us with many firms in the market.
“Drinking alcohol affects individuals differently. A zero limit is therefore simpler, more consistent and in line with the modern, global and high performance culture that we want to embrace.”
A Lloyd’s spokesman said that if someone was found to have broken the rule, their manager will decide on the best course of action to take.
The ban is now included in the Employee Guide, which has been reviewed by HR.
Anyone who does not comply with the measure risks facing gross misconduct procedures and could lose their job.
Comments from employees on an internal intranet include complaints that the measure is “heavy handed” and was imposed without consultation.
According to the London Evening Standard, one employee asked:
“Did I just wake up from my drunken induced slumber to find we are now living in Orwell’s 1984?”