Amazon delayed its first return-to-office date in September of 2021 and set a second return-to-office date for January of 2022. On October 11 of 2021, however, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy cancelled a return-to-office date altogether. Instead, Amazon managers could decide what’s best for their team without a company-wide policy on office-first or remote-first work. As a result of the change in policy, Amazon cut back on its square footage on a new office space project in New York City and paused new construction on offices in Bellevue, Washington and Nashville, Tennessee.
On February 20, 2023, Amazon backtracked on its “no official return to office policy.” According to The Register, “Amazon boss Andy Jassy is demanding a return to the office for the ‘majority’ of the company’s 300,000-strong corporate workforce, with an expectation that employees will spend “at least” three days on site each week.”
On August 22, 2023, Amazon released a new policy that demands some employees (its not determined now many) must move near a central office hub to be with their team by the middle of 2024, or risk losing their jobs. “Under the guidelines, remote workers are expected to have completed their move to a main hub by the first half of 2024.”
On October 19, 2023, Business Insider reported that the company issued updated guidelines to managers, stating that employees who do not come to the office for a minimum of three days per week are now subject to termination.
Here is everything you need to know about Amazon’s return to office plan: the current policy, the timeline of delays, and sentiment from Amazon leadership about how work will be done in the future at the company.
Amazon’s Return To Office: Current Policy
- Return To Office Date: June 30, 2024
- Location Policy: Hybrid
- Office Visit Expectations: 3 days/week
- Office Space Footprint: Decreasing
Amazon’s RTO Timeline
September 7, 2021: Delayed
“Amazon said it expects office workers in the U.S., U.K. and several other countries to resume working mostly on site the week of Sept. 7, according to an email sent to employees Thursday.”
January 3, 2022: Cancelled
“Corporate employees in the U.S. and some other countries will begin returning to the office beginning Jan. 3, 2022, the company confirmed to CNBC.”
Cancelled (No Official Return)
“On October 11, 2021, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy said the company would no longer require corporate workers to return to the office” (source).
May 1, 2023: 3 days/week
“Amazon boss Andy Jassy is demanding a return to the office for the ‘majority’ of the company’s 300,000-strong corporate workforce, with an expectation that employees will spend ‘at least’ three days on site each week” (source).
May 31, 2023: Employees plan a walkout
“As tech-giant Amazon enforces its return-to-office mandate, some employees at the company’s headquarters in Seattle announced a planned walkout as frustrations grow.
Sent internally through an email, employees said they planned to “walk off the job” on May 31 (source).”
August 22, 2023:
Amazon released a new policy that demands some employees (its not determined now many) must move near a central office hub to be with their team by the middle of 2024, or risk losing their jobs. “Under the guidelines, remote workers are expected to have completed their move to a main hub by the first half of 2024” (source).
Sentiment From Amazon Leadership
Stance on hybrid work
- Current sentiment: “It’s easier to learn, model, practice, and strengthen our culture when we’re in the office together most of the time and surrounded by our colleagues. It’s especially true for new people… but it’s also true for people of all tenures at Amazon” (source).
- Original consensus (no longer valid): “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” (source).
Stance on remote work
- “[Amazon CEO Andy Jassy] believes that this transition to online work was bound to happen sooner or later, and the pandemic only “accelerated people moving to the cloud by a few years” (source).
Stance on office space
- “Amazon has also cut back on the amount of space it had intended to lease from JPMorgan Chase & Co. at Hudson Yards, reducing the square footage it aims to take over” (source).
- “Amazon is pausing the construction of six new office buildings in Bellevue and Nashville to reevaluate the designs to suit hybrid work, the tech giant said on Friday” (source).
See Also: Take a look at Amazon’s PTO Policy
View All Return To Office Plans For The Fortune 100
Every month, we update every Fortune 100 company’s return-to-office policy. You can download the Fortune 100 RTO spreadsheet below.