Dell goes back on WFH pledge, forces employees to come back to the office

logic of work
(Image credit: Logitech)

Despite initially promising workers that they could continue to work from home where applicable following the mandate set out by the pandemic, Dell is now turning back on its decision and asking workers to return to the office.

Unlike some other companies’ approaches, Dell seems to be asking workers who live within an hour’s commute to work from the office for three days per week, rather than specific job roles.

Acknowledging that the news may leave some workers struggling to find suitable provisions, such as childcare, the request is being made on an “as soon as you can arrange it” basis (via The Register).

Dell return to the office

The news comes from COO Jeff Clarke, who sees the move as one that begins to more clearly define what hybrid working means for the company.

Earlier on in the pandemic, Clarke suggested that almost two-thirds of the company workforce may be able to continue working remotely, referring to work as “an outcome, not a place or a time.”

In reality, this looks not to be a compromise but a return to pre-pandemic normality, when workers would typically spend around half the week in the office as part of a hybrid routine. 

While Dell isn’t the only company asking workers to return to the office, the general sentiment is still unclear. Amazon earlier this year asked workers to return to the office, which was met with uproar. Google did the same, only to tell workers in its Cloud department that they should share a desk with a colleague on a two-day-per-week basis. 

On the other end of the spectrum, Microsoft announced a report indicating that workers were indeed productive at home (and sometimes more so), just that managers were failing to have confidence in workers.

Either way, Dell is just one of the many companies starting to turn back to office-based working. A company spokesperson told TechRadar Pro:

“As the world adjusts to post-pandemic living, we shared with our team members that we will return to more flexible and hybrid work. We believe the future work experience will be a hybrid one and flexibility is, and will continue to be, a strong differentiator for our culture. Team members located within about a one-hour or less one-way commute to a major Dell office should plan to be onsite at least three days a week. For those team members who have a need for a full-time remote work schedule, we will work with them on a case-by-case basis.” 

Via The Register

Craig Hale

With several years’ experience freelancing in tech and automotive circles, Craig’s specific interests lie in technology that is designed to better our lives, including AI and ML, productivity aids, and smart fitness. He is also passionate about cars and the decarbonisation of personal transportation. As an avid bargain-hunter, you can be sure that any deal Craig finds is top value!