As the COVID crisis wears on, many global companies continue to offer a remote work environment and for the most part, have no immediate plans for returning to the office. In fact, two-thirds of major companies want to make their remote work policies permanent. At least for the interim, the coronavirus pandemic has forced the hand of many businesses in terms of embracing a work-from-home policy. They had to make quick transitions, but many are starting to realize that remote work is the future. There are now a wide variety of company announcements relaying an extension of their return-to-office deadlines or giving employees a choice to work from home indefinitely.
For companies who already had a remote work infrastructure in place pre-pandemic, the transition was pretty smooth. For others, it was dizzying, but they are now noticing the benefits in terms of costs, flexibility, and even environmental advantages. At the same time, employees also enjoy the opportunity for an improved work-life balance.
According to a Global Workplace Analytics survey, 77% of the 3,000 respondents say they feel “fully productive” and want to keep working remotely at least one day per week. The Global Workplace Analytics survey also stated that, “Twenty-five to thirty percent of the workforce will be working-from-home multiple days a week by the end of 2021.” In addition, Gallup poll researchers remarked, “Now that some of these employees may be able to return to their workplace, it appears only a quarter are emotionally ready. Another quarter are reluctant to return specifically because of concerns about contracting COVID-19, while half have a personal preference for working remotely.”
With intelligent automation, and collaboration technologies such as Slack and Google Hangouts, it’s easier than ever for employees to stay in touch and in the loop.
Invariably, employees also like the fact that they can avoid traffic, look after their kids attending virtual classes, and assist with family members who may be affected by COVID. For employers, they are realizing the cost savings opportunities that come with minimizing the expenses associated with office spaces such as long-term leases and land purchases. Moreover, an increasing number of businesses are adopting an entirely remote or remote-first policy.
Below are 20 companies that have recently switched to long-term remote work as a business strategy.
- Initially, Google planned to have employees return to the office on July 6, 2020. Since then, Google has extended the back-to-the office date to September and now through June 2021.
- On August 4, Uber announced that all employees can work remotely through June 2021. In addition, they will receive a $500 stipend for their home offices.
- Global news organization Reuters shared with employees that they can work remotely through January 2021.
- San Francisco-based Twitter announced in May that employees could work remotely indefinitely. Also, all in-person events and business travel has been suspended throughout 2020.
- Bay Area-based Coinbase is planning to make remote work a permanent strategy. In May, CEO Brian Armstrong announced that most jobs will be remote although they can offer office space for those who want it.
- Mastercard is letting employees decide when they want to return to the office or if they want to work from home indefinitely.
- Even when offices reopen, the Square company will allow employees the freedom to choose whether they prefer to work remotely.
- In May, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg told employees they can work from home without an end date.
- Spotify will reopen its offices on a city-by-city basis, depending on local government’s guidelines. The company is also allowing employees to work from home for the rest of 2020.
- On August 12, REI announced it would be selling its unused 8-acre campus in Bellevue, Washington. CEO Eric Artz also shared this about the company’s work from home policy which will “lean into remote working as an engrained, supported, and normalized model” for team members.
- Salesforce has varying opening dates for its 160 global offices. However, in May, the company announced that employees could work remotely through 2020.
- ProcessMaker has made the decision to let employees work from home indefinitely.
- Originally, Amazon set the remote work end date for October but has extended it through January 8, 2021.
- Nielsen, an entertainment ratings research company, will transition its New York City offices into meeting spaces for staff – a majority of which continue to work from home.
- Zillow CEO Rich Barton announced in April that employees could work remotely through 2020. That policy has now been extended indefinitely, and staff can work from home permanently if they so choose.
- Nationwide Insurance has enabled a permanent work from home policy. They are also downsizing from 20 physical offices to four.
- Microsoft was planning to reopen their offices in Redmond, Washington in October. They have since pushed the date back to January 2021.
- Adobe, well-known for Adobe Flash and Adobe PDFs will allow employees to work from home until October 2, 2020. The date is also subject to change.
- IT research company Gartner is allowing all staff to work from home through January 1, 2021.
- Cloud-based meeting and messaging company Slack has given their employees the option for permanent home-based work.