Amazon postpones return to office until January 2022

The Amazon headquarters sits virtually empty on March 10, 2020 in downtown Seattle, Washington. In response to the coronavirus outbreak, Amazon recommended all employees in its Seattle office to work from home, leaving much of downtown nearly void of people.
John Moore | Getty Images

Amazon is postponing a return to the office for its corporate employees until early next year, becoming the latest tech company to do so amid a rise in Covid-19 cases due to the highly contagious delta variant.

Corporate employees in the U.S. and some other countries will begin returning to the office beginning Jan. 3, 2022, the company confirmed to CNBC. Previously, Amazon had said it expected most of its employees to begin returning regularly to the office the week of Sept. 7 of this year.

GeekWire previously reported Amazon’s updated return-to-work guidance.

In recent weeks, other technology companies including Google, Facebook, Apple and Twitter have adjusted their return-to-work plans amid a rise in Covid-19 cases.

Unlike Google and Facebook, Amazon won’t require workers returning to its office to be vaccinated. Amazon CFO Brian Olsavsky confirmed this in a call with reporters following the company’s second-quarter earnings report last week.

The company will require employees to wear masks in the office, unless they show proof of full vaccination, Amazon said.

Amazon in June walked back its guidance around remote work. The company said it expects employees to work in the office three days a week, leaving them the option to work remotely up to two days a week. That was a significant U-turn from its March guidance, when it said its goal was to “return to an office-centric culture as our baseline.”

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