Google to wind down pandemic work-from-home

And Apple, too, and Twitter, kinda


Updated Google employees in the United States must be in the office at least three days a week from April 4 as the internet giant winds down its work-from-home policy.

The Chrome titan's campuses around northern California and other parts of America are preparing for staff to return to their campus desks and couches.

It's expected that most workers will be in three days a week, and will work remotely the other two days. Some Googlers may need to be on-site for longer each week, depending on their role. To be on-site, workers must be vaccinated or have a management-approved exception. Social distancing and mask requirements have been relaxed for the vaccinated. Folks who continue for some reason to work fully from home won't need to be vaccinated.

Bosses are scheduling 15-minute virtual meetings in which people can drop-in and chat to counselors if they need more assistance with returning to their corporate floors, and can ask for more time to work from home if necessary. We understand previous on-site perks, such as massage services for workers, are coming back, too. If staff wish to work more than three days a week in an office, they can.

"It's been a long and challenging two years since the vast majority of our people started working from home," John Casey, Google's VP of global benefits told employees in an email, obtained by CNBC.

"But the advances in prevention and treatment, the steady decline in cases that we continue to see, and the improved safety measures we have implemented across our Bay Area sites now mean we can officially begin the transition to the hybrid work week."

Like many other tech companies, Google has tried to end its work-from-home rule put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic a few times already. Previous attempts have been thwarted by new coronavirus variants and a rise in infections. As the latest Omicron surge dies down in most parts of the world, the Chocolate Factory is trying to bring its employees back to its campuses again.

Google spokespeople declined to comment on the record.

On this subject, Twitter will reopen its offices globally from March 15, and staff can choose where they want to work: at their desks every day, only at home, or a hybrid of both. ®

Updated to add on March 5

Apple has reportedly told staff to work from the office at least one day per week from April 11, and by May 23, at least three days a week, Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Editor's note: This article was revised to clarify that Googlers will still need to be vaccinated to work on-site.


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