- Dell has told “hybrid” staff to start coming into the office about three days a week.
- It said “in-person connections paired with a flexible approach are critical to drive innovation.”
- Dell sent a memo to staff about the changes on Monday, The Register first reported.
Dell has told some workers they must start going into the office about three days a week.
Under the new rules, employees in “hybrid” roles must go to a company office at least 39 days a quarter — the equivalent of about three days a week, a Dell representative told Business Insider.
“We believe in-person connections paired with a flexible approach are critical to drive innovation and value differentiation,” Dell said in a statement.
A memo detailing the changes was sent to staff on Monday, tech news site The Register first reported.
During the pandemic Dell encouraged remote working, saying that 60% of its workforce could continue working from home regularly after it ended and only needed to come into the office once or twice a week.
Like other major tech companies including Amazon, Google, and Apple, Dell has revised its WFH policies since the pandemic ended.
In March 2023, the company issued a new mandate ordering all staff living within an hour of Dell offices to commute into the office at least three days a week, Tech Radar reported.
The new guidance, which extends the three-day-a-week order to more employees regardless of where they live, was a means of “thinning the herd,” The Register reported.
Some lower-paid workers could choose to be fully remote — but doing so would come at the cost of career progression, an unnamed source told the outlet: “Folks who live a few hours away from the office will have to go into an office and if they do not, they have to sign up to a remote contract with the tacit understanding that being remote is career limiting.”
Dell did not address that aspect of the new policy when asked for comment by BI.
The company cut more than 6,000 roles in February last year, or about 5% of its workforce, taking the headcount down to about 126,000, Bloomberg reported at the time. About two-thirds of Dell staff are outside the US.
Its stock has more than doubled in the past 12 months, leaving the company worth about $60 billion.
RTO mandates have been criticized by some as a form of age discrimination, as older workers are more likely to benefit from remote work flexibility.
A recent survey by the caregivers organization Carewell found 43% of older workers said remote work made them less likely to retire, while a quarter said RTO policies made them contemplate no longer working more seriously.
Research has also found that RTO policies are not as effective at boosting productivity as bosses claim, and strict mandates encourage top workers to want to quit.
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