Google’s hybrid workplace starts Monday — here’s how long ex-Google HR exec Laszlo Bock predicts that will last
By | Ryan Fernandez | www.bizjournals.com
With a largely digital-focused workforce, Google LLC is a company that seems to be naturally inclined to working from home or in a hybrid setting.
But a former high-ranking Googler says hybrid work at the Alphabet Inc.-owned company is likely to be a temporary state of affairs — three to five years, tops, according to Bloomberg, followed by a restoration of the pre-pandemic five-day workweek.
That’s the prediction of Laszlo Bock, who was the senior vice president, People Operations, at Alphabet Inc.-owned Google from 2006 to 2016. Bock now leads Mountain View-based human resources consultancy firm Humu Inc.
He pins his predicted return of the five-day schedule on two reasons: worker competition during evaluations, and executives who really want people back in their desks at the office.
For the first reason, Bock anticipates that in-office workers will be at an advantage when it comes to how they’re perceived at evaluation time, and have better prospects for raises, promotions and better assignments — he said that competition for such things will drive people back to the office.
In the latter case, bosses just want people back, Bock said. Largely older executives, he said, are finding it hard to lead in a virtual environment. But a rollback would likely be a slow process as memories of the pandemic fade and people get used to being in the office again.
“‘We’ll get everyone back into the office eventually. I just don’t want to pick that fight now,’” one unnamed executive told Bock, per Bloomberg.
Monday, April 4, is the first day of Google’s new hybrid workplace, when the Mountain View tech giant’s Bay Area offices officially reopen and most employees are expected to be in them three days a week. Google made the announcement in early March, and said it planned to use that month to help workers with the transition.