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Ford will allow 30K workers to continue to work from home post-pandemic

Ford will allow 30K workers to continue to work from home post-pandemic
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Ford Motor Company told tens of thousands of employees on Wednesday that they will be permitted to work from home even when the coronavirus pandemic is over, allowing around 30,000 to use the office only when needed.

Bloomberg News reported that the company unveiled a “flexible hybrid work model” that will allow Ford employees to work from home for “heads-down work,” and come into the office for meetings and team-building activities.

The system is expected to go into effect in July and will mainly apply to salaried employees and not factory workers.

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In a survey conducted last summer, 95 percent of Ford's global non-production employees said they were in favor of maintaining a mix of home and office work after the pandemic, Bloomberg notes.

Jackie Shuk, global director of Ford’s real estate unit, told Bloomberg News that the company would no longer have "cubicle farms," and is trying to make it as "easy as possible to be a Ford employee.”

“When you start looking at that key talent, and how prime it is right now, we have to become that employer of choice and compete against those tech companies,” Shuk added.

Bloomberg reports that keeping employees happy has become a key recruitment tool for Ford as it competes for talent with Silicon Valley companies. The automaker is currently preparing for a technological transformation as it moves towards electric and self-driving vehicles.

Silicon Valley firms such as Facebook, Google and Twitter have seemingly embraced extending work from home availability. Twitter has said it will allow employees to work from home "forever."

Around half of American employees were telecommuting by August of last year, a record amount. However, concerns have been raised regarding the negative effects of working from home, including fatigue, decreased productivity and cybersecurity risks.