Google announced on Thursday, 2 December, that it was indefinitely postponing its return-to-office plan that was supposed to commence by January 2022 due to the potential threat posed by the Omicron variant of the coronavirus, Insider reported.
The decision has also been taken in the light of resistance from some employees about the company's vaccine mandate, which required all its employees working under federal government contracts to be fully vaccinated, even if they are working from home.
Previously, in en email to his staff, Google CEO Sundar Pichai had said that "beyond January 10, we [Google] will enable countries and locations to make determinations on when to end voluntary work-from-home based on local conditions."
Additionally, a company spokesperson in a statement said that Google has safely opened most of its US based offices and will "continue to determine when offices reopen and start the hybrid work week based on local conditions, which are dynamic and vary greatly across locations", according to CNBC.
In August, the company had announced that it would expect employees to work in person about three days per week starting from 10 January, thereby ending the voluntary work-from-home policy that it had maintained for a long time.
Google, which has more than 80 offices that span across more than 50 countries, was one of the first major companies to initiate a work-from-home policy for its employees due to the pandemic, Reuters reported.
(With inputs from Insider, CNBC, and Reuters)
(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)