Beginning in May, Amazon will require its employees to work away from the office at least three days a week. The company announced the plan in a memo released Friday, which is credited to CEO Andy Jassy (via CNN). A supporter of the policy, Jassy said a hybrid work arrangement would “strengthen” Amazon’s corporate culture and lead to better collaboration among employees.
“It’s not easy bringing many thousands of employees back to our offices around the world, so we’re giving the teams that need to do this work some time to come up with a plan,” Jassy said. “We know it won’t be perfect initially, but the office experience will steadily improve over the months (and years) to come as our real estate and facilities teams smooth the wrinkles and ultimately evolve the way we want our offices to evolve set up to capture the new ways of working that we want.”
Shortly after the pandemic began, Amazon said it expected employees to return to the office in October 2020. The company pushed back that date several times as successive waves of the coronavirus forced cities around the world into lockdown. Amazon’s announcement comes the same week that Activision confirmed that Blizzard employees will be required to work away from the office at least three days a week starting in July. Like Blizzard, Amazon has seen many of its workers unionize in response to company policies. Most notable was JFK8, the Staten Island plant that became the first Amazonian unionized workhouse when a majority of its workers voted to unionize last year. The move also comes after Amazon confirmed earlier this year that it was laying off more than 18,000 employees.
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