GM announced that it has changed its policies regarding remote work as the COVID-19 pandemic wanes, calling its workers back to the office for three days a week.
A report by Automotive News indicates that the automaker has amended its flexible “Work Appropriately” guidelines, which allowed its white-collar workers to work remotely more often. Under these guidelines, salaried workers that worked from home during the peak of the pandemic could continue to perform their duties remotely, although it’s worth noting that Work Appropriately was not an official policy, but rather a so-called “shared mindset.”
GM says that it elected to modify its expectations for remote work as the pandemic wanes. In a statement regarding the amended guidelines, a GM spokesperson said, “We’re committed to maintaining flexibility to ensure our employees can attend to personal commitments, and we will share details with them in the coming weeks.”
The adjusted guidelines were distributed to GM employees by way of an internal message from the senior leadership team, including CEO Mary Barra. “Over time, we have lost some of the important, intangible benefits of regularly working together in-person including, casual mentoring, more efficient communication and bringing an enterprise mindset to work,” the message read. “We are entering a rapid launch cycle that, quite frankly, will define our future trajectory, and we need to drive change with speed – individually and collectively – so we can achieve our goals.”
The call to return to office work will bring employees back to the massive GM Renaissance Center complex located in Detroit, which has been nearly empty since the start of the pandemic. Many of the building’s tenants, including restaurants, shops and office space renters have parted ways with the facility as a result of reduced foot traffic, leaving elements of the Renaissance Center’s future up in the air.