Microsoft is giving its employees permanent 'work from home' option
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Microsoft has announced the plan to give its employees an option to work from home permanently. The move will be executed as part of a "hybrid workplace" strategy aimed at giving workers more flexibility once offices begin to open in the United States. Here is all you need to know about it.
Microsoft employees have been working remotely since March
Since March, Microsoft has been on a remote working mode with a vast majority of its employees handling their duties from home. The policy was enforced due to the COVID-19 pandemic and remains in effect at least until January 2021. But, with states reopening gradually, it is only a matter of time when the company would have to open its offices for workers.
This is where the new policy comes in
To ensure employees' safety in this situation, Microsoft has internally announced the hybrid workspace policy, The Verge reported. Under this, the company has said employees will be allowed to work from home freely for less than 50% of their working week or, as an alternative, they may opt for permanent remote work with the permission of their manager.
Office space will have to be given up
If an employee goes remote, they will have to give up their office space but will retain access to the touchdown space at Microsoft. The company will pay home office expenses, but if the workers choose to move away from the office location, they will have to bear those costs on their own. Their compensation will change on the basis of Microsoft's geo-pay scale.
Relocation will be allowed internationally too
Employees transitioning to remote working will be allowed to relocate within their country or to another country (if their role allows) with the permission of their managers. In addition to this, options for flexible working hours and part-time working - with the permission of managers - will also be provided to the Redmond giant's employees.
Some employees will have to visit offices
While many Microsoft employees will be able to take advantage of permanent or less than 50% work from home option, a select few will have to visit the company's offices regularly. This group, as Microsoft explains, includes people handling roles that require regular access to hardware labs and data centers available in Microsoft's offices, and for in-person training.
"We will offer as much flexibility as possible"
"The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged us to think, live, and work in new ways," Kathleen Hogan, Microsoft's Chief People Officer, told employees. "We will offer as much flexibility as possible to support individual workstyles, while balancing business needs, and ensuring we live our culture."