A few days ago, Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman told a reporter that if MS employees want to continue earning 'big bank' money, then they will need to report back to the office sooner rather than later. The announcement elicited criticism from some corners, as Gorman was slammed for supposedly ignoring the valuable lessons learned by corporate America during the pandemic.
As more banks opt to recall employees to the office, American megabanks are leading the way, with JPM and Goldman Sachs out front (while rivals like Bank of America trail not too far behind).
Meanwhile, bankers' rivals in America's burgeoning tech industry are finding more ways to improve the flexibility of working from home.
To wit, Google on Tuesday released internal tools for its employees to request office changes or apply to become fully remote workers. The internal software is being released as companies around the world look ahead to a post-pandemic work environment and try to figure out the logistics of managing a more sprawling work force.
CNET reported that in May, CEO Sundar Pichai announced plans for 20% of the company to permanently work remotely.
Another 20% of Googlers can work from a Google office other than their normally assigned one if they so desire. The other 60% will be working from their normal office campus a few days a week.
But one of the most useful aspects of the new toolkit works like this: if Google employees request transfers to new markets or offices, their compensations would be adjusted to the rates of the local region. That could mean a decrease in pay for many employees working in San Francisco or New York should they decide to move out to the suburbs. If they are moving to smaller markets. The new software, called the Work Location Tool, will show employees estimates of how their salaries might change depending on location.
A Google spokeswoman said the company will pay employees at the top of the local market, and equity won't decrease for transferring US employees.
"With our new hybrid workplace, more employees are considering where they live and how they work," a Google spokeswoman said in a statement. "To better equip people with the information they need to explore their options, we've built a tool that will allow all employees to request to move to a new location, or go remote."
As recent employment data have shown, thousands of workers across the US have decided to quit their jobs rather than return to the office, per WSJ.
“People are seeing the world differently,” says Steve Cadigan, a talent consultant who led human resources at LinkedIn during its early years. “It’s going to take time for people to think through, ‘How do I unattach where I’m at and reattach to something new?’ We’re going to see a massive shift in the next few years."
Still, given their overwhelming preference for working from home, thousands of workers just might see Gorman's and Google's demands as justified.