Yet the benefits of a distributed workforce are likely to be felt long after the pandemic subsides. Microsoft won’t be re-opening its offices until July 2021 “at the earliest”, according to an internal email obtained by ZDNet, which means its employees will continue to work remotely. Working from home may lead to fewer of its employees contracting COVID-19 than if they congregated in crowded offices. Get this delivered to your inbox, and more info about our products and services. "We shared guidelines internally this week to provide options for our employees to plan ahead for when we can return to the workplace safely," a Microsoft spokesperson said in a statement to CNBC. Earlier this month, Microsoft announced that employees can request to work from home on a permanent basis, even once the pandemic is over. Microsoft will also provide other benefits, such as flexible work schedules and reimbursement for home-office setup expenses. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg predicted in May that 50% of employees will be working remotely within the next five to 10 years. Prior to going freelance in 2020, I was editor of UK tech tabloid The INQUIRER. "We will offer as much flexibility as possible to support individual work styles, while balancing business needs, and ensuring we live our culture.". I have written for a range of titles including. Microsoft's new policy is certainly due in part to the coronavirus pandemic, which continues to sicken millions of people around the world. Returns as of 11/27/2020. The tech titan is adopting a "hybrid workplace" system that will allow its people to work from home less than half their workweek, and those seeking to do so on a full-time basis are encouraged to speak with their managers. Market data powered by FactSet and Web Financial Group. I have written for a range of titles including Computer Shopper, Expert Reviews, Forbes, IT Pro, the Metro, PC Pro, TechRadar, Tes, uSwitch and WIRED. Got a confidential news tip? As The Verge reports , employees will have the option to work remotely for less than 50 percent of their normal work week. Tip #1 – Use your own device if your work computer didn’t get the “work from home” memo. Employees can work from home full time with manager approval. In turn, Microsoft's new work-from-home initiatives should help to strengthen its already highly skilled workforce and position it for long-term success in today's shifting employment environment. The company notes that it may not be possible for all jobs to be performed remotely. Joe honed his investing skills as an analyst for Stock Advisor, Supernova, and Fool One. He battle-tested his investment philosophy and strategies as portfolio manager of Tier 1, a market-crushing Motley Fool real-money portfolio that delivered 24.58% annualized returns during its existence. Cumulative Growth of a $10,000 Investment in Stock Advisor, Microsoft Embraces the Work-From-Home Trend @themotleyfool #stocks $MSFT, Microsoft's Cloud Growth Continues to Pay Dividends, Microsoft's Growth Engine is Firing on All Cylinders, Microsoft's New Security Chip Could Strengthen Windows, Microsoft Kicks Off Next-Gen Cycle With Xbox Series X and Series S Launch. The company previously advised employees that they would be able to return to the office in January, but now says that based on consultation with "health and data experts," it will extend the option for US employees to work remotely through July 6, 2021. They can also move to a new location for remote work, with salaries adjusted based on geography, if their manager approves. The new guidelines, previously reported by The Verge, allow all Microsoft employees to work remotely less than 50% of the time. "Our goal is to evolve the way we work over time with intention—guided by employee input, data and our commitment to support individual work styles and business needs while living our culture.". Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own. However, the company is also giving its employees the option to relocate within the U.S. and even internationally if possible. I'm a freelance technology journalist, copywriter and editor with more than a decade of experience in the industry. Always meet your deadlines—This should go without saying, but it’s important to make sure you aren’t slacking off. Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is giving its employees the flexibility to work remotely more often. That means the company can't fully re-open its offices before then, though some workers will be given the option to return to work onsite, at least on a part time basis. According to the email, Microsoft offices in the United States likely won't reach "Stage 6" - when the pandemic is no longer deemed to have a significant impact on the country - until July 6, 2021. All Rights Reserved, This is a BETA experience. See you at the top! For those whose work can be done entirely remote, there are options to relocate - even internationally - if approved. We want to hear from you. Teams work better when members know what to expect of each other. It's closer to Facebook's recent remote work policy, which allows employees to work from home with manager approval and move to a different location with adjusted salaries. It will also be able to hire workers who are either unable or unwilling to work in a typical office environment. Data is a real-time snapshot *Data is delayed at least 15 minutes. Sign up for free newsletters and get more CNBC delivered to your inbox.