Microsoft announced plans today to reopen several of its offices – most notably company headquarters located in Raymond, WA – starting Monday, February 28. The reopening plans come two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, with the decision being based around local health metrics and the availability of COVID-19 vaccines.
It’s not just offices in Washington that are reopening, but also offices in California’s Bay Area like the new Silicon Valley Campus which is also set to reopen on February 28. Microsoft notes in the blog post that “many of our other U.S. locations will follow suit as conditions allow.”
Offices won’t be reopened to employees alone, but visitors and guests as well. If this move sounds a bit risky, Microsoft takes time to elaborate on factors being considered in regards to reopening offices like those in Washington, such as high community and employee vaccination rates.
The move to reopen offices means in-person work will inevitably resume for Microsoft employees, however, it’s reported that staff will have 30 days to adjust to a work routine they and their managers decide upon. As such, it sounds like it’ll be possible for individuals with medical concerns to continue working remotely, or as part of a hybrid setup.
It’s interesting to see companies like Microsoft begin to reopen offices in states like Washington and California, although the reasons provided by Microsoft make sense when it comes to things like vaccination rates in those areas.
We’re curious, what do you think of Microsoft’s decision? Feel free to share your thoughts with us, and also be sure to check out some of our other pandemic-related coverage including E3 2022 being virtual again this year in light of concerns regarding the Omicron variant.