During the spring and early summer of this year, companies prepared to bring their employees back into the office as cases of Covid-19 plummeted thanks to increased vaccination rates.
However, after the Delta variant caused a huge spike over the past two months, big companies pushed back their plans to return to the office until next year.
While this makes sense due to health and safety concerns, the uncertainty from the perspective of employees is unnerving. Keeping them in the loop of office reopening plans, such as which metrics leaders are analyzing to determine the safety of in-person work, is essential here.
Although some companies have offered a 30-day notice before they expect workers back into the office, this policy isn’t sufficient.
Many employees have moved since the beginning of the pandemic for reasons including needing help with childcare, to be closer to their families, or to find a lower cost of living. Do employers expect them to pack up and leave that behind within 30 days?
This strategy hasn’t just impacted employees themselves — businesses have also been hurt by the lack of certainty and transparency.
For instance, a story in SFGate quoted bar owner Leilani Mason, who spent $30,000 to open her business in July. However, when offices delayed their reopening, she lost money.
“We have no customers at happy hours, and we’re having our staff come in but there’s no one for them to serve,” said Mason.