Google is accelerating the partial reopening of offices and putting limits on the future of remote work


April 5, 2021:-Google, one of the first major U.S. companies, will set new remote work guidelines as it has plans to get employees back to the office.

As millions of Americans get vaccinated by the day, Google is accelerating reopening plans in several parts of the U.S. on a volunteer basis ahead of the September 1 return deadline, according to internal documents viewed by CNBC.

Offices will begin in a limited capacity in April based on the availability of vaccines and a downward trend in Covid-19 cases.

“It’s now been over a year since many of us have been working from home, and the thought of returning to the office might bring up different emotions,” wrote Fiona Cicconi, Google’s new head of people operations, in a company-wide email on Wednesday.

If employees want to work remotely after September 1, for above 14 days per year, they’ll have to formally apply for it, according to a separate note marked “Need to know.” In the most exceptional cases, they can apply for up to 12 months. However, the company could call employees back to their offices at any point, the note said.

Google is preparing for a broad opening in September when employees will be expected to show up in person weekly thrice. The company takes a different approach from industry peers such as Facebook and Twitter, which vowed to allow most remote work indefinitely.

Wednesday’s email written by Cicconi said that employees would return to their assigned offices to allow owners to bring their dogs. She said the planning work was managed by the company’s Real Estate and Workplace Services groups.

“The offices won’t look exactly the way you remember them, but our amazing REWS teams are doing their best to make them comfortable, which will also include providing meals, snacks, and amenities where possible,” Cicconi said.

Cicconi warns the employees to “stay vigilant to prevent a new wave of the virus,” adding that Brazil sees “hardship” with rising cases.

Those staffers who left the Bay Area during the pandemic for less stress and perhaps to save money may have an incentive to return. On Wednesday, in one of the notes, the company said it might adjust employees’ salaries based on their work.

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