Google delays employee return to office to January 2022

Google is the latest company to push back its return to physical offices amid COVID-19 concerns.

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Just a handful of months ago, COVID-19 numbers in the United States were starting to hit lows that we hadn’t seen in over a year. That along with continued vaccine rollout meant that a lot of companies were beginning to eye a potential return to physical offices after more than a year of remote work. Google was one of those businesses, previously targeting October as its return to physical offices, Google has delayed said return to January of next year.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced the delay of the company’s return to physical offices in a blog post shared on August 31, 2021. In the post, Pichai explains that ongoing concerns surrounding the pandemic have led to the delay.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai
Google CEO Sundar Pichai

Google’s current “voluntary return-to-office policy” means that employees in locations where offices have reopened have the choice to go back to physical locations, or continue to work from home. However, once that window is over, it will become mandatory that employees return to their in-person offices, where applicable. Google was originally looking at September 1 to be its big return to offices. That date was then delayed to October. Now, the company is pushing things once again to January 2022.

The conversation of remote work vs in-person offices has become a hot point of debate during the pandemic. Some companies, such as Shopify, have committed to permanent remote work for all employees. Companies like Google, however, are determined to return workers to physical offices once it’s safe to do so. As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve, we’ll continue to report on how it’s impacting the business world.

Contributing Editor

Donovan is a young journalist from Maryland, who likes to game. His oldest gaming memory is playing Pajama Sam on his mom's desktop during weekends. Pokémon Emerald, Halo 2, and the original Star Wars Battlefront 2 were some of the most influential titles in awakening his love for video games. After interning for Shacknews throughout college, Donovan graduated from Bowie State University in 2020 with a major in broadcast journalism and joined the team full-time. He is a huge Star Wars nerd and film fanatic that will talk with you about movies and games all day. You can follow him on twitter @Donimals_

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