Lyft pushes back staff’s return to office until 2023 at earliest

Rideshare firm Lyft is allowing workers to continue working remote for the rest of next year, and among the tech giants making a U-turn on returning to office in the face of a new Covid-19 variant. — AFP

Lyft Inc. said employees can work remotely for the entirety of 2022, a reversal of its previous mandate and one of the longest office-return delays among major companies.

The second-largest US ride-hailing operator revised an earlier requirement for workers to be back at their desks in February.

Many companies are changing their return dates yet again in response to the omicron variant of Covid-19, but few have gone as far as Lyft’s full-year reprieve.

Google informed employees last week that it won’t enforce its January deadline and will reassess after that. Uber Technologies Inc., Lyft’s main rival, made a similar move.

Lyft’s offices will fully reopen in February as planned for employees who want to come in, but returning will be optional for the whole year. The new policy is meant to provide workers with flexibility, a Lyft spokeswoman said.

The change wasn’t "exclusively tied” to omicron, but the new strain was "a factor contributing to some uncertainty,” she said.

The San Francisco-based company doesn’t plan to go fully remote indefinitely as others, including Twitter Inc., have done. Lyft will "continue to talk with team members, use their insights and prioritise flexibility as we develop long-term plans for how we work,” the spokeswoman said. – Bloomberg

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