Square announces permanent work-from-home policy
San Francisco-based Square, a mobile payments company, announced that they will let their employees work remotely, even after the Covid-19 lockdown is lifted.
The move came after Twitter announced the work-from-home policy last week. Founder and CEO of Square Jack Dorsey, who is even the co-founder and CEO of Twitter, told Square employees that if they want to continue working remotely once COVID-19 quarantines come to an end, they are free to do so.
However, this policy is relevant for only those who can do their jobs from home, but in-office operations and security employees will still need to go to the office.
A Square spokesperson said, “The Company wants it, employees, to be able to work from where they feel most creative and productive. We feel moving forward, Squares will be able to work from home permanently, even after the offices begin to reopen. Over the past several weeks during the pandemic, we’ve learned a lot about what it takes for people to effectively perform roles outside of an office, and we will continue to learn as we go.”
Square employees had started working from home since early March this year. Facebook, Google, and Microsoft all moved to remote work around the same time.
After some countries started easing the lockdown restrictions, those three companies have also extended their work-from-home options. Facebook announced that its employees can work from home until 2021. Google also moved its return to office date ahead from June 1st to December 31st. Microsoft has also extended the work-from-home deadline through October 2020. Only Twitter and Square have made remote work options permanent.
The announcement of Twitter and Square employees to have the option to work from home forever has come as a big surprise throughout the business world.
As the business community is struggling over the decision of how and when to reopen amid the health crisis of the Covid-19 pandemic the move by Twitter and Square seems to be the need of the hour. Over successful work-from-home models, experiences and surveys advocate a bigger move by the whole community towards increasing work from home policies moving ahead.
Taking into consideration all the benefits like reduced commuting time, reduced operational costs of the company, low pollution levels a permanent work-from-home business model seems to be the new successful thing.
The obvious question arising here is how long will the work-from-home policy survive in the industry? The forced virtual working has surely reduced operational costs but also has a wide range of challenges to be faced ahead. The companies will face issues in maintaining team cohesion, camaraderie, and team culture within the employees. The companies after adapting the work-from-home culture are likely to come across a big loss in their productivity and reduced customer service. The management will further face accountability and performance challenges
Not only this but, the work-from-home culture will also lead to an insecure environment and an uncontrolled information security risk.
Although companies are facing all these difficult issues at the time of the Covid-19 pandemic, safety and public health guidance need to drive final decision making.