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Amazon comes up with new return-to-office policy, will let individual teams decide remote work possibility

Amazon comes up with new return-to-office policy, will let individual teams decide remote work possibility

Amazon has deferred its previous decision to have its employees back in its offices by January next year. The company now believes that individual teams should best decide how or when they should be joining back the workplace.

(Image: Reuters) (Image: Reuters)
Story highlights
  • Amazon had previously called for a minimum of 3-day work from the office in a week starting January 3.
  • Owing to the rising number of delta Covid-19 cases in the US, the company has now backtracked on this decision.
  • It will now allow individual teams to decide as and when they want to operate from the offices.

Amazon has once again tweaked its back-to-work policy as the company experiments on how or when its workforce will return to its offices. While it had earlier decided to call its employees to work starting January next year, it will now leave it up to individual team leaders to decide if their teams attend offices or work remotely.

In a recent note, Amazon admitted that the company will be in a "stage of experimenting, learning, and adjusting" for a while as to how best to call its workforce back to the office. It shared that owing to the company's large size, there is no one-size-fits-all approach and hence, each team will have their required attendance in the office decided by their team leaders.

The decision is a sharp twist from a baseline of three days a week in the office that the company had earlier decided for all its employees. Amazon had asked the employees to return to offices starting January 3 following the 3-day attendance rule.

Instead of such a universal requirement, Amazon has now left this decision on individual teams. "This decision will be made team by team at the Director level," Amazon Chief Executive Officer Andy Jassy cleared in his message to employees.

In addition to the generic instruction, Amazon also acknowledged the newly gained flexibility among its employees in working remotely. The company says that going forward, it will continue to offer an option to its corporate employees to work "up to four weeks per year" remotely from any location within their country of employment.

Jassy said that the team leaders are likely to take time, for now, to come up with the right plan for their teams. It is expected that the Amazon employees will hear from their team leaders on the specifics of the matter before January 3.

Amazon is not the only tech major to have been struggling with the dilemma of whether or not to call its workforce back to offices. In a similar note last month, Microsoft further postponed its plans to call its employees to office from early October. The company delayed the decision indefinitely, stating that it will no longer forecast a new date for a full reopening of its US worksites.