Microsoft logoSource: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

What you need to know

  • Microsoft will move to the final stage of its hybrid workplace model, which includes employees having the option to return to offices.
  • As part of the move, Microsoft will fully open its facilities to employees, visitors, and guests.
  • Employees of Microsoft have until late March to adjust to the working preferences that they've established with their managers.

Microsoft will fully open its facilities to employees, visitors, and guests as part of a transition to the final phase of its hybrid workplace model. The shift comes in large part due to high vaccination rates in King County, which is where the majority of Washington-based Microsoft employees live, and advances in treatment for COVID-19. Microsoft's move will take effect on February 28, 2022.

As part of the transition, Microsoft employees will have 30 days to adjust to the working preferences they've established with their managers. These setups could include remote work, hybrid work, or in-office work, depending on what's been agreed to.

All services on Microsoft campuses will return as well, such as the Connector ride-share option for any staff based near Puget Sound.

Microsoft's Chris Capossela outlined the process in a blog post. He explained that Microsoft will be able to make this shift due to high vaccination rates and advances in medical treatment for COVID-19. 83.8% of King County residents that are eligible for vaccination have completed their vaccine course. 91.6% of eligible people in King County have had at least one dose of the vaccine. Those figures are for all King County residents, not Microsoft employees in King County.

"We know there's not a singular solution to how people work best, which is why we believe flexibility should be at the forefront of our evolving hybrid workplace," said Capossela. "Our approach to hybrid embraces schedule flexibility as standard for most roles and provides employees with the opportunity to determine how and where they work best, while making sure an individual's plans align to the team agreements set with their manager."

Microsoft initially planned to reopen its offices in July 2021, but the pandemic evolved since that schedule was introduced. Microsoft has since pushed back its plans to reopen several times. Now, the company is set to move forward with its transition to open facilities by the end of this month.

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