I track the Fortune 100’s return to office policies here. As a result, I can see all of the Google search terms that bring people to my report.
In the last few days, Google searches for “Ford return to office” spiked.
This is a telltale sign that a new internal RTO policy has been released. This time, it has yet to be reported in mainstream media.
Here’s what I know so far.
Ford’s New Return To Office Policy
Here’s the policy change that likely occurred:
Late January: Searches for “Ford return to office” spike
On January 24, I noticed that Google searches for “Ford return to office” started trending slightly.
On February 1, searches increase again, then again on February 6. This is enough of an outlier in the data to show that something is up.
Early February: Comments appear on TheLayoff.com and Reddit
February 1: An anonymous post on TheLayoff.com discusses the new RTO policy. In just six days, the post receives nearly 2,500 views.
February 2: Another anonymous post on TheLayoff.com confirms that a new RTO policy started this week. With the overall positive sentiment of the post (not common on these forums), other commenters speculated that this was a planted post from Ford’s HR team.
February 1-6: Other comments on Reddit confirm the policy change.
A Reddit user mentions the 3 days/week policy.
A Reddit user mentions how the policy isn’t company-wide, but there are requirements for some groups.
One Reddit user confirms that Ford does not have a company-wide policy, but another mentions how a new 3/days week policy is coming.
- Late January/Early February: A sizable group of corporate Ford employees receive a notice to return to the office in the next month.
- Early February: Employees start anonymously posting on forums about the policy.
This matches the pattern for other internal policy changes that are not released to the public.
Here’s what is happening (with pretty high conviction): Ford has a new RTO policy rolling out from Feb 5 – Mar 1 that requires some corporate employees (but not all) to return to the office three days per week.
Do you have information about Ford’s RTO policy? Contact me with details. I will update the story if you have information about this story.