Google is getting tougher on in-office work, and says it will consider attendance in employee performance reviews

A man with a backpack walks up to a glass building with the Google logo on it
Google's campus in Mountain View, California.Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images
  • Google told staff Wednesday its hybrid work policy is getting stricter.

  • It's going to include attendance rates in performance reviews.

  • Employees who want to work remotely full-time will be considered "by exception only," Google said.

Google is getting stricter about in-office work, telling staff that the company will factor office attendance as part of their performance reviews, according to an email sent to staff on Wednesday, which was reviewed by Insider.

Google's Chief People Officer Fiona Cicconi told employees in the memo that employees who want to work remotely full time will now be considered "by exception only," reversing a pandemic policy that had previously allowed thousands of staff members to relocate away from company offices.

The company previously said that from April 2022 employees would be expected back in the office at least three days a week, which Cicconi in the note said most staff members were adhering to.

But Cicconi said the new policy will make in-office attendance a factor when it comes to Googlers' performance reviews. She added that managers will send reminders to employees who are "consistently absent from the office."

The tech giant will also track turnout through badge data, according to additional documents seen by CNBC.

The changes reflect a changing attitude to remote work among the big tech companies. Meta told employees last week that they will be expected in the office three days a week.

Cicconi on Wednesday told staff that there was "no substitute for coming together in person."

"We've heard from Googlers that those who spend at least three days a week in the office feel more connected to other Googlers, and that this effect is magnified when teammates work from the same location," she said.

For staff already approved to work remotely full time, Cicconi said that the company hopes they will consider switching to a remote schedule.

Google did not comment on the memo when contacted by Insider but confirmed that fully remote work would be limited to exceptions only.

In February, Google Cloud staff were told to start sharing desks and attend the office on alternate days, as part of its hybrid plan. It also recently announced a pullback on perks as part of broader cost-saving measures.

According to a survey from real estate agents Knight Frank, half the world's biggest companies – those with over 50,000 employees – plan to reduce their office space by 10% to 20% by 2026.

Salesforce has also been trying to lure its staff back to the office, but by donating $10 to charity for every appearance, rather than a crackdown, per Fortune.

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Read the original article on Business Insider