After working from home for more than 16 months, some Twitter employees in San Francisco and New York returned to their offices on Monday, and the company reopened its corporate campuses in these two cities with 50% capacity.

As the COVID-19 vaccination rate rises, major US technology companies are divided on how and when to reopen their offices. Alphabet’s Google announced that employees can return to the office voluntarily starting in late July, while Apple expects employees to work three days a week in the office starting in early September.

Twitter employees shared photos of them having breakfast in the elevator and selfies without masks. When referring to the food and music in the San Francisco office of the social media company, an employee wrote on Twitter: “I am more excited than expected.”

Although some employees expressed excitement, most wanted to spend the least amount of time in the office. An internal company survey found that 45% of San Francisco employees and 63% of New York employees plan to return to the office, even if there is only one day a week. The rest intend to continue working remotely.

Twitter announced in May 2020 that employees can work anywhere and require proof of COVID-19 vaccination before they can re-enter the office. The company still allows employees who can complete their work remotely to work from home indefinitely. Twitter’s chief financial officer, Ned Segal, said in a tweet that the company hopes to support employees “whether on the couch or in the office”.

Twitter will continue to adjust their salaries based on the cost of living where employees are located-this is a consideration for those who choose to work remotely. Facebook and Google also reaffirmed their commitment to location-based compensation policies.

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According to the company, Twitter will decide when to reopen other offices based on the COVID-19 infection rate and vaccination rate in each location.

© Thomson Reuters 2021