Coronavirus: Google says most employees will work from home until 2021 amid pandemic

Latest in succession of tech giants to take such a move

Andrew Buncombe
Seattle
Friday 08 May 2020 13:26
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Coronavirus in numbers

Google has said most of its employees will work from home until next 2021 – the latest major technology firm to stick with social distancing measures until next year.

Reports said Sundar Pichai, Google’s chief executive officer, told employees on Thursday to prepare to work from home until October and possibly into next year.

In taking such a step, Google is the latest tech giant to do so.

Facebook said on Thursday most of its staff will continue to work from home until 2021, while Amazon has already told staff to stick with the remote working process until at least October.

Mr Pichai told staff that staff who need to go to the office can do so from July. He said enhanced safety measures would be put in place before people returned.

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It came as Facebook and other companies continued to pull the trigger on their back-to-work strategies.

“Facebook has taken the next step in its return to work philosophy. Today, we announced anyone who can do their work remotely can choose to do so through the end of the year,” a spokesman said.

“As you can imagine this is an evolving situation as employees and their families make important decisions re returning to work.”

CNBC pointed out that Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said last month that because most Facebook employees were able to do their jobs remotely, the company felt “a responsibility to allow people who don’t have this flexibility to access shared public resources first”.

He also said the company would not hold any gatherings of more than 50 people until July 2021 at least.

The news about Google’s step was first reported by The Information and later confirmed by other media outlets. There has been no public announcement yet from Google.

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