Google postpones return to office and makes vaccination mandatory

·1 min read
Google’s office in Mountain View, California. (AP)
Google’s office in Mountain View, California. (AP)

Google has pushed back the date on which employees will return to the office and announced that vaccines will be required.

CEO Sundar Pichai told employees in an email on Wednesday that the office return will now occur on 18 October because of the latest outbreaks of Covid-19. Those coming to the office will require a vaccine.

Employees have previously been able to voluntarily return to the office until September.

“We are excited that we’ve started to re-open our campuses and encourage Googlers who feel safe coming to sites that have already opened to continue doing so,” Mr Pichai said in the email.

“At the same time, we recognise that many Googlers are seeing spikes in their communities caused by the Delta variant and are concerned about returning to the office.”

The company will monitor Covid data carefully before confirming when the full return to the office will take place, promising to let staff know a full 30 days in advance.

Employees with “special circumstances” can apply to work from home for the rest of the year.

The news comes just a week after Apple made a similar decision.

There had been a plan to bring staff back into the office three days a week beginning in September, but that has been pushed back a month.

According to an email seen byThe Verge, CEO Tim Cook initially asked workers to return to the office on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays.

Microsoft said it would allow employees to work from home half of the time. Facebook said full-time workers can work from home if their jobs can be done remotely

Twitter and Spotify have been most generous, introducing permanent work from home policies.