Apple is delaying its plan to return to mandatory personal work due to the increase in COVID cases caused by the Delta variant, According to Bloomberg. The company had drawn up a roadmap to return to its offices in the beginning of September, whose workers are expected to arrive at least three days a week, but now the deadline has been announced to be extended “by at least a month until October at the earliest”.
Apple’s return to the offices was controversial among some of its employees. A group of workers in the internal Slack channel with thousands of “telecommuters” collaborated a letter to CEO Tim Cook and other Apple executives, in which case the company should adopt a more flexible work at home policy. Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s Director of Retail and People, answered to the request by saying “personal cooperation is essential to our culture and our future”.
Apple was notoriously unfriendly to the concept of a telecommuting pandemic, and while allowing employees to work from home two days a week is a big change for the company, other Silicon Valley giants give employees more choice where they do their work. For example, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Limit last year that, according to him, about half of the company will permanently move to telecommuting in the next five or ten years. Google has said that it expects 20 percent of employees to stay telecommuting when its offices are open again.
It now appears that Apple is one of the first companies to change its plans in response to the increase in COVID cases. Employees are given at least a month’s notice before they are expected to return to personal work, according to Bloomberg.