Shifting to In-Person Work

It’s been over a year of COVID-19.

As vaccinations roll out across the nation, some restrictions are lifted and companies reopen their offices, there seems to be a shift underway.

Beginning as soon as May, states such as California and New York are starting to open their offices at limited capacity.

With the surge in remote workers transitioning to in-person work, a recent NPR article asked the question: What Happens When Offices Reopen?

When the pandemic first began, with work apps such as Slack and Zoom at the click of a button, companies began acknowledging that workers may be able to permanently work from home.

During the height of the pandemic, Upwork cited that “remote work statistics from a recent survey showed that more than half of the US workforce, or 56.8 percent to be exact, are working remotely at least part of the time” (Oberlo).

Large companies such as Facebook publicized that they might never go back to in-person offices again as seen in the screenshot below:

Facebook is the latest major tech company to let people work from home forever

Fast forward to a year later and these companies are now opening back up again. NBC News says that “The social media company [Facebook] said its offices in Fremont and Sunnyvale are also scheduled to reopen at 10 percent capacity on May 17 and May 24 respectively, while its San Francisco office would reopen on June 7” (NBC News).

With other companies following suit, what happens to the workers who moved away during this time?

A recent article by NPR outlines a story of a couple that moved from Denver, Colorado to Duluth, Minnesota during the pandemic. The article states that “they told their employers at first the move was temporary – just through her maternity leave. They didn’t mention that they had bought a home in Minnesota” (NPR).

Across the nation, there are many people that made similar moves.

During a time of great uncertainty, as restrictions change and news is broken, things seem to be changing day by day making it difficult for both companies and workers.


In an earlier blog, we discussed the Salesforce/Slack merger which created a work-from-home staple.

Last month, Slack made headlines when they unveiled and quickly removed a new DM feature that would allow users to send messages across different organizations called Connect DMs.

These DMs are similar to email, where a member of one organization can send another user of another organization a message once the recipient accepts the request.

This feature was quickly deleted.

Slack’s Vice President of Communications said in a statement to Verge: “After rolling out Slack Connect DMs this morning, we received valuable feedback from our users about how email invitations to use the feature could potentially be used to send abusive or harassing messages. We are taking immediate steps to prevent this kind of abuse, beginning today with the removal of the ability to customize a message when a user invites someone to Slack Connect DMs” (Verge).

Keep following for more updates.