Apple says it wants its employees to return back to its offices by early September, according to a company-wide memo sent out this week.
By September, Apple staff members are expected to return to their offices for at least three days a week, said CEO Tim Cook in an email obtained by the Verge.
The CEO specified that employees will be asked to come into the office on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, adding that some staff members will be given the option to work Wednesdays and Fridays remotely.
As for teams that require “in-person” work, they must return for four to five days per week. Apple also reportedly told its employees that they will be given the chance to work remotely for two weeks per year, “to be closer to family and loved ones, find a change of scenery, manage unexpected travel, or a different reason all your own.”
Managers, however, will need to approve those remote work requests.
Cook added that while transitioning to working remotely in the wake of the Chinese coronavirus has been streamlined, video conferences have not been an adequate substitute for in-person work.
“For all that we’ve been able to achieve while many of us have been separated, the truth is that there has been something essential missing from this past year: each other,” the CEO said.
“Video conference calling has narrowed the distance between us, to be sure, but there are things it simply cannot replicate,” Cook added.
This change is likely not a surprise to Apple employees, the report added, as the company’s stance on working remotely has always been more conservative when compared to other tech giants.
Apple, however, has gotten more relaxed with remote work in the wake of the Wuhan virus.
In his email on Wednesday, Cook also reportedly encouraged all employees to get vaccinated against the coronavirus.
“For now, let me simply say that I look forward to seeing your faces,” Cook concluded in his email. “I know I’m not alone in missing the hum of activity, the energy, creativity and collaboration of our in-person meetings and the sense of community we’ve all built.”