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Unlike other Seattle tech companies, Amazon will return to ‘office-centric’ approach

The Seattle Amazon campus is seen on April 30, 2020 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images)

Amazon announced Tuesday that it plans to return to an “office-centric” work model after the end of the pandemic.

Microsoft the latest Puget Sound company to bring workers back

That operates in stark contrast to other Seattle-area tech companies like Zillow, Microsoft, and Facebook, which have all indicated over the last year that they plan to pursue a transition to a hybrid work-from-home approach.

For Amazon, the decision to move most of its workers back into offices was based on creating a work environment that lets its employees “invent, collaborate, and learn together most effectively.”

After initially planning to bring workers back in June, the company now expects to start phasing its U.S. employees back to in-person work “by early fall.”

This comes in the wake of a mid-March announcement from Microsoft, when it said it would be committing to a “hybrid workplace” even after returning some of its employees to offices starting in mid-2021.

Facebook first major company to bring Seattle workers back to offices

“Our goal is to give employees further flexibility, allowing people to work where they feel most productive and comfortable, while also encouraging employees to work from home as the virus and related variants remain concerning,” Microsoft Executive Vice President Kurt DelBene said.

Similarly, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced in January that more experienced employees would soon be able to request permanent work-from-home status, while acknowledging he expects half of the company’s workers will likely be remote within the next five to 10 years.

Zillow — also based in Seattle — indicated last July that it would be allowing all of its employees to remain in a work-from-home model full-time.

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