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Amazon Softens Return-To-Office Policy For Some Roles

‘...instead of specifying that people work a baseline of three days a week in the office, we’re going to leave this decision up to individual teams,’ says Amazon CEO Andy Jassy in a letter to employees and referring to corporate roles.

Amazon will allow its corporate-related teams to decide for themselves how many days a week their employees should come to the office as the pandemic rolls past its 20th month.

In a letter addressed to “Amazonians” and posted on the company’s website Monday, CEO Andy Jassy said that for corporate employees, “instead of specifying that people work a baseline of three days a week in the office, we’re going to leave this decision up to individual teams. This decision will be made team by team at the Director level.”

Jassy said that “[w]e expect that there will be teams that continue working mostly remotely, others that will work some combination of remotely and in the office, and still others that will decide customers are best served having the team work mostly in the office. We’re intentionally not prescribing how many days or which days—this is for Directors to determine with their senior leaders and teams,” he said. “The decisions should be guided by what will be most effective for our customers; and not surprisingly, we will all continue to be evaluated by how we deliver for customers, regardless of where the work is performed.”

Jassy also said there “are other types of roles as well, such as those working in our AWS datacenters, physical stores, and those designing, developing, and testing new devices, who don’t have the flexibility to work remotely. I just want to thank these teammates for their passion, commitment, and continued dedication. It’s highly appreciated.”

In August, Seattle-based Amazon made the decision to delay the date of when it expects its corporate employees to return to in-office work as COVID-19 cases tied to the more contagious delta variant continue to rise, extending the date to Jan. 3, 2022.

Earlier in the summer, the tech giant said employees would be required to work in the office at least three days per week, with the specific days determined by their team leaders. Those who want to work in the office less than three days per week and who are still able to commute to their assigned offices, can apply for exceptions, in which case they would be considered primarily remote workers.

Amazon employs about 1.3 million.

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