Google will start bringing 10 to 15% of its employees back to offices


Google CEO, Sundar Pichai, announced in an email memo the company’s next steps in the Google’s work places around the world.

He also announced May 22 as company a holiday to ease off burnout caused by the non-stop work. Lock downs around the world are now slowly being lifted. The new normal is currently on a beta test for those countries.

Physical and social distancing is still key to mitigate the transmission of the virus. Some schools are adapting the half on-site and half online learning approach. Malls and leisure areas remain to be closed.

The biggest question for most is how will businesses and offices adapt to the new normal. For the past two months companies have implemented methods to execute an efficient workforce working from homes.

Now they have to discuss whether to bring employees back to the office or have them stay at home. Google for one will implement a mixed approach.

Employees will return at 10-15% office capacity

Sundar Pichai, Google’s CEO, announced via an email memo that Google will start bringing back 10 to 15% of its employees back to the office. For those that could continue working from home, they may do so until the end of the year.

Pichai acknowledges that the company is already getting used to working in virtual meetings, but he still misses the experience of having many people in one place at a time. The emphasis is still on the safety of the employees from crowded spaces. Additionally, Pichai adds that,

It may be a while before that’s (physical meeting) is possible. Our ramp back to the office will be slow, deliberate and incremental.

Staggered approach for bringing back employees

Pichai notes that the way back to the office for its people will be complex to say the least. He acknowledges this fact because of the multiple variables present in Google offices around the world.

We are a global company, with a range of products and teams, and this is a global crisis, manifesting in different ways in regions and countries.

The first ones to go back to the offices are functions that need special equipment to get their jobs done. Employees that continue work from home shall be given opportunities to return to the offices from time to time.

May 22 day off for Google employees

Google aims to provide a pleasant work atmosphere for it employees, and the company continues to extend allowances for them. As such, Pichai announced that May 22 will be a day off for all Google employees.

The main driver for the announcement was the constant burnout that employees are feeling because of the pandemic. For offices that won’t have work on May 22, managers will be given the leeway to designate a specific day during May to call off one day of work.

Image courtesy of Christian Wiediger/ Unsplash

Steven Hung

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Steven Hung

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