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Tech companies speed up return to the office

As vaccination rates across the U.S. continue to rise, major tech companies say they will reopen their offices with limited capacity in the coming months.

Google, one of the first major U.S. companies to practice remote working last year because of the pandemic, is apparently changing its work-from-home policy as it looks to get more people back into its offices. The company will continue its current work-from-home policy until the 1st of September but will allow people to return voluntarily from this month.

Employees will have the option to return in April, Fiona Cicconi, Google’s chief people officer, reportedly told employees in an email. Offices will operate at a limited capacity, and reopenings will vary state by state, based on the number of coronavirus cases in the area, Ms. Cicconi said.

“Offices will begin to open in a limited capacity based on specific criteria that include increases in vaccine availability and downward trends in Covid-19 cases,” Ms. Cicconi wrote. The tech firm will only allow employees to work from home for more than 14 days a year if they apply for it.

However, Google is not the only big tech company that decided to speed up office reopening plans.

Amazon also said on Tuesday its post-pandemic goal will be “an office-centric culture as our baseline,” and it will start bringing back employees in June. It expects most domestic workers to be back in the building by early fall.

Uber and Microsoft had announced earlier they would reopen their headquarters on March 29, with Uber saying employees can come back to the office on a voluntary basis until the site reaches 20% capacity.



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