Amazon will allow remote workers to work indefinitely

Amazon announced Monday that it would allow many corporate and tech workers to work remotely indefinitely as long as they are able to commute to the office.

This new policy was posted to a blog. It is an update from Amazon’s prior expectation that employees should be present at least three days per week when the offices reopen after the January COVID-19 pandemic.

The Seattle Times reported Monday that Amazon CEO Andy Jassy signed the message. He said that company directors would have discretion to allow remote teams to work remotely if they choose.

Jassy stated that “we expect that there will continue to be teams that work mostly remotely, others who will work in the office and some that work remotely, and still others who will decide that customers are best served having our team work mostly in the offices.”

The majority of the more than 1,000,000 global employees of the online retailer cannot work remotely as they are employed in fulfillment and transport divisions, which picks up orders and delivers them to customers.

About 50,000 office and tech employees work at the sprawling headquarters in downtown Seattle and in the South Lake Union neighborhood. They will be a burden on nearby restaurants and businesses.

Amazon updated its return-to work policy in response to similar moves by other large technology companies. Microsoft announced last month it was delaying reopening its offices for indefinitely.