Tech

Microsoft to reopen its headquarters to more employees on March 29

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Key Points
  • Microsoft said it will allow employees who work at its Redmond, Washington, sites and nearby campuses to choose between returning to work full time, continuing to work remotely or implementing a hybrid model.
  • The company told employees last October it will allow more flexibility to work from home, even after it's safe to return.
  • Following several months of office closures due to the coronavirus pandemic, employers are beginning to permanently shift to more hybrid work models or planning to forgo traditional office spaces entirely.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella gestures while speaking during a company event in San Francisco.
Robert Galbraith | Reuters

Microsoft said Monday it will begin to bring back employees to its headquarters in some capacity starting March 29.

Microsoft said it will allow employees who work at its Redmond, Washington, sites and nearby campuses to choose between returning to work full time, continuing to work remotely or implementing a hybrid model.

"We've been closely monitoring local health data for months and have determined that the campus can safely accommodate more employees on-site while staying aligned to Washington state capacity limits," the company said.

Currently, Microsoft has work sites in 21 countries that have been able to accommodate additional workers in its facilities, which it said represents about 20% of its global workforce. The company said it has more than 160,000 employees.

Microsoft told employees last October it will allow more flexibility to work from home, even after it's safe to return to the office. The company said it planned to allow employees to work remotely less than 50% of the time. Employees can also request approval from their managers to work remotely full time or to potentially move to a new location.

Following several months of office closures due to the coronavirus pandemic, employers are beginning to permanently shift to more hybrid work models or planning to forgo traditional office spaces entirely.

Spotify said in February it is adopting a "Work from Anywhere" model, which will allow employees to choose whether they want to be in the office full time, be at home full time or a combination of the two. Salesforce also announced it will let employees choose whether they want to come into the office again, saying "the 9-to-5 workday is dead." Twitter and Square are letting employees work from home "forever." 

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