Amazon Expands Flexibility for Some Employees to work From Home

The announcement was a further retreat from the rigid stance the tech giant had taken earlier this year.


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Amazon expands flexibility indefinitely for some employees to work from home.

Amazon’s headquarters in Seattle. The company has retreated from its plans to return to an “office centric” culture.Credit…Grant Hindsley for The New York Times

Oct. 11, 2021Updated 2:56 p.m. ET

Amazon told employees on Monday that it was loosening its plans to force workers to return to their offices, further retreating from a more rigid approach it had taken earlier this year.

In March, Amazon told employees that it wanted to return to an “office centric” culture. It backtracked this summer, saying most corporate employees would need to be in an office at least three days a week. A plan to return to the office by September was pushed to January as the Delta variant of the coronavirus took hold.

Now Amazon is adding more flexibility to its return-to-office plans. “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,” Andy Jassy, the company’s chief executive, told employees in a message that the company also posted online.

The director of each team will decide when and how frequently employees would need to be in the office, if at all. “We’re going to be in a stage of experimenting, learning and adjusting for a while as we emerge from this pandemic,” Mr. Jassy wrote.

Employees who primarily work from home won’t be able to live just anywhere. “We want most of our people close enough to their core team that they can easily travel to the office for a meeting within a day’s notice,” Mr. Jassy said.

The change comes as Amazon is hiring voraciously, looking to fill 40,000 corporate and tech jobs in the United States alone.

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