coming back from covid

Timelines Vary for Bay Area Companies Reopening Offices

NBC Universal, Inc.

With California officially reopening for business on Tuesday, it marks a time for some workers when restrictions are lifted at the office and for others a return to the office.

For nearly 14 months, people across the Bay Area have had to juggle the new normal of working remotely, away from the office and colleagues.

Some of the area's bigger companies such as San Francisco-based Salesforce could see a good percentage of their employees continue working from home after the pandemic.

In a memo to staff this month, the CEO of Mountain View-based Google outlined a hybrid model for returning to the workplace, with three days in the office and two off site. This would break down to about 60% staff being in the office a few days a week.

At Cupertino-based Apple, workers also are expected to follow a hybrid return to the workplace. Employees there are being asked to work in the office on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. Some teams will be asked to return four to five days a week.

The executive director of tech trade association sf.citi says her team has followed workplace trends for the tech industry since the start of the pandemic. The biggest fact they learned was many companies are adopting a "remote first" mentality. She says only about 10% of tech companies plan to return to the traditional Monday-through-Friday workweek.

"To be honest a majority of tech companies had already been examining what a remote-first environment would look like long before the pandemic," Jennifer Stojkovic said. "So we heard from a lot of companies that this means when employees come into the space they don't necessarily have a desk with their name on it. It's more of a roaming model."

Once the state reopens fully, vaccinated people can take off their masks indoors in most places. including stores, restaurants and other businesses. Gov. Gavin Newsom has said the state will be consistent with the CDC guidelines.

An official decision from state officials on mask requirements in the workplace is expected Thursday.

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