Apple has delayed its mandatory return to office after a surge in COVID-19 cases. An email to employees confirms they will be given a month’s notice before they have to return, but Apple Store locations remain open.
Unlike Facebook and many others, Apple has discouraged a permanent work from home arrangement, much to the dismay of some employees. However, Tim Cook has agreed to a compromise that will allow some home working.
Apple originally planned to recall office workers for at least three days a week in September, but that date was pushed back to October due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation. The recall has now been delayed again until January.
Apple delays mandatory return to office
“I know there are feelings of frustration that the pandemic is not yet behind us,” Apple SVP or people and retail, Deirdre O’Brien, wrote in an email to staff, seen by The Verge. “For many colleagues around the world, this period has been a time of great tragedy, suffering, and heartbreak.”
“Please know that we are all here to support one another and stand with one another during such challenging times.
Apple blames the delay on yet another surge in COVID-19 cases. The news will undoubtedly be welcomed by those who pushed back against a mandatory return to office and called for a more flexible working policy.
Apple encourages COVID-19 vaccines
O’Brien also encouraged employees to get vaccinated, the report adds. Apple previously asked workers in certain locations to share their vaccination status with the company before a return to office was confirmed.