Michael Clarks
on December 22, 2021
Read in 1 min

Google, Ford, and Uber Delay Their Reopenings

The COVID-19 pandemic and the appearance of Omicron specifically have caused a major shift in the business world as companies delay or change their return to office plans. A handful of large groups, including Ford and Lyft, have announced that they will be returning later than previously thought because cases have increased greatly over recent weeks. 

Small businesses and landlords relying on office workers are now adjusting to the possibility of a longer-term setback. The return to normalcy could be pushed out beyond next month, which would create major challenges for commercial real estate landlords, bars, restaurants, and other businesses supporting the office buildings. 

Delayed Reopenings Lead To More Vacancies

Another delayed return to the office could prompt more employers to consider or implement a long-term remote work strategy. As for now, the share of the US employees who have returned to their offices is less than 50%. 

Facebook has created an option for its US employees to stay at home until June, even though the company plans to open its office by the end of January. Hartford Financial Services has also postponed senior managers' flights to the headquarters. The trip was originally planned for mid-December; now, it looks like they're not going anywhere before early 2022. 

It’s Not That Bad Though

With COVID-19 cases rising, there are still reasons to be optimistic about 2022. More and more Americans are getting their vaccine shots. When the Delta variant hit earlier this year, only 62% of people 12 and older had been vaccinated in the US. Now, this number is 82% roughly and even higher in the major cities like San Francisco or New York. 

The number of workers coming back to the office since Thanksgiving has increased despite the pandemic cases rising, with security company Kastle Systems saying that just over 40% in 10 major cities are back at work. This marks a record level since COVID-19 struck the US. 

This is not legal, financial, or professional advice. Please consult a legal, financial, or professional advisor for your specific situation.