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Amazon reveals another new return-to-office plan

Amazon is offering its employees greater flexibility about coming back to the office.

In a memo to employees on Monday, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy said the company will leave it up to individual team directors to decide how often their employees work in the office. It’s a change from Amazon’s previous return-to-work plan, announced in June, in which it set a baseline of three days a week in the office, giving employees the option to work remotely up to two days a week. (Prior to that, in March, Amazon said that its goal was to “return to an office-centric culture as our baseline.” )

“For our corporate roles, instead of specifying that people work a baseline of three days a week in the office, we’re going to leave this decision up to individual teams,” Jassy said in the memo. “This decision will be made team by team at the director level. We expect that there will be teams that continue working mostly remotely, others that will work some combination of remotely and in the office, and still others that will decide customers are best served having the team work mostly in the office.”

Jassy noted that the company was intentionally not prescribing how many days or which days employees work in the office — that the decision is for directors to determine with their senior leaders and teams.

“The decisions should be guided by what will be most effective for our customers; and not surprisingly, we will all continue to be evaluated by how we deliver for customers, regardless of where the work is performed,” he wrote.

As part of the new policy, Amazon will also give corporate employees the option to work up to four weeks per year fully remote from any location within the country where they are employed. Jassy added, however, that most employees should be close enough to their core team “that they can easily travel to the office for a meeting within a day’s notice.”

Jassy said that individual employees can expect to hear from leaders about the plans before January 3, which is the date Amazon set previously for people to start returning to the office at least three days a week.

In the memo, Jassy recognized the many Amazon employees — including those working in the company’s fulfillment and transportation divisions, AWS data centers, physical stores and more — whose roles aren't as flexible as most of its corporate roles.

I just want to thank these teammates for their passion, commitment, and continued dedication,” he said. “It’s highly appreciated.”

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