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Amazon extends remote work indefinitely for certain employees

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Julie Hyman gives her take on Amazon’s decision to provide flexibility for corporate workers as they extend remote work indefinitely. Watch as Julie Hyman discusses the impact of the work from home format.

Video Transcript

JULIE HYMAN: I want to pick up on a topic that we just talked about a little bit with [? Anniken ?] [? Shaw ?] of Jefferies, and that is return to work and what that looks like. Because we got some new, news from Amazon, which is tweaking under new CEO Andy Jassy its return to work plan and basically sort of opening it up and making it more flexible, saying it's going to be dependent on team heads, whether people are going to be required to go back into the office.

And a couple of months ago, they said they were delaying corporate employees' return to the office until at least January 3rd. Now it seems like they're giving some more flexibility. Of course, a lot of folks who work at Amazon, probably the vast majority, don't have a choice, right? They're in warehouses. They're delivering. They're doing all the work that needs to be done, no matter what. They're not office workers.

But nonetheless, this raises the question-- and Amazon is certainly not alone in this-- as to what our post-pandemic work looks like and is it just a matter of it being hybrid? And it seems like increasingly, the answer is yes. I said earlier that the latest jobs report showed more people since the onset of the pandemic are back in the office than ever before.

But I don't think that those people are all back in the office full-time. It feels as though even companies that say formally come back to the office, not everybody is doing so, or they'll do a token day here or a token day there. And that's based on, to be clear, anecdotal evidence in my case. But it just feels like that that is sort of the new normal.

What [? Anniken ?] also said that is really interesting is that people don't feel engaged right now. Shocker-- they're not in front of other people in person talking to them. And so, maybe we get used to this, but maybe there's a tipping point where you do see more in-office engagement because otherwise, people just are not connected to their co-workers at work.

BRIAN SOZZI: Julie, if you work at Amazon, why wouldn't you want to be in the office? It just raises the chance that you run into Jeff Bezos and him holding some coffee in an elevator. You get to ask him about William Shatner, and then maybe a month later, you get a promotion. So why not put yourself in the best potential to succeed in life? If you're Amazon, get to the office.

JULIE HYMAN: I don't know how much Bezos is wandering the halls these days, Sozz, but maybe Andy Jassy. Maybe there, you can--

BRIAN SOZZI: Either one. I'll take it.

JULIE HYMAN: --have a chance of running into him. I think that chance is a little bit higher.