Amazon will allow employees to work remotely two days a week

The exterior of The Spheres is seen at Inc. headquarters on May 20, 2021 in Seattle, Washington. Five female employees sued Amazon this week, alleging discrimination and retaliation.

David Ryder | fake images

Amazon is giving its corporate employees greater flexibility to work remotely, the company said Thursday, in a significant U-turn from its previous back-to-work guidance.

In an internal note sent to employees, Amazon said it expects employees to work in the office three days a week, leaving them the option of working remotely for up to two days a week. Leadership teams will determine which days employees will be required to work from the office, the company said.

Geekwire previously reported on Amazon’s memo regarding the company’s return-to-work plans.

Corporate employees who do not want to work in the office three days a week can request an exception. Additionally, some employees will have the option of working fully remotely for up to four weeks per year.

Amazon had previously taken a stricter approach to its return-to-work plans. In March, Amazon emphasized that its goal was to “return to an office-centric culture as our baseline.” At the time, the company said it expects some employees to return to the office this summer, and most of its staff to return to the office by the fall.

Amazon said in the memo that it is “learning and evolving as we move forward” and that it will “continue to evolve” as it receives employee feedback on the updated guidance.

“Like all companies and organizations in the world, we are managing all stages of this pandemic for the first time, learning and evolving as we go,” Amazon said in the memo. “We have been thinking about how to balance our desire to provide flexibility to work from home with our belief that we invent the best for clients when we are together in the office.”

Other tech companies have taken a similar approach to their return-to-work plans. Last week, Apple said employees will return to the office three days a week starting in early September. In May, Google said it expects 20% of its employees to work from home after its offices reopen later this year.

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