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A hot potato: Are you one of the many people so against returning to the office that you'd rather quit your job than go back? It's an issue several companies are facing. According to a recent report, one tech giant rapidly losing staff over its RTO policy is Amazon, though it doesn't seem willing to do anything about it.
Business Insider reports that some Amazon employees have noticed an increasing number of colleagues are leaving the company over its strict return-to-office mandate.
Ending a policy of allowing employees to work from home full-time is always a contentious move by companies, but none have faced as much pushback as Amazon. The original announcement resulted in an employee petition in February, which was resoundingly rejected, and it was one of the reasons behind a walkout later in the year.
Adding fuel to the fire is another Amazon policy introduced in July that requires some corporate workers to relocate to other cities near their teams' "hub" offices – central locations assigned to each individual team.
Amazon CEO Andy Jassy was clear about what will happen to any worker who refuses to come back into the office for at least three days per week: "It's probably not going to work out for you at Amazon," he said in August.
In an internal Slack channel called Remote Advocacy dedicated to discussions about the RTH (return-to-hub) mandate, one of the 34,000 group members wrote "This is my last week at Amazon and my only reason for leaving is the RTH policy."
It's speculated that the uptick in resignations is linked to the deadlines for employees starting work in offices getting closer. BI writes that cloud unit Amazon Web Services has seen several notable departures in recent weeks. "The sheer number of AWS resignations in the last week is stunning," wrote Merritt Baer on X, a former AWS employee who left in July after more than 5 years at the division.
The sheer number of AWS resignations in the last week is stunning.– Merritt Baer (@MerrittBaer) December 4, 2023
Other messages on the Slack board from departing employees cite RTO and the poor communication surrounding it, as well as being forced into relocations that aren't possible. The messages also complain about a lack of respect for employees, poor planning, and the many layoffs Amazon has implemented in recent times.
Return-to-office mandates were being debated again earlier this week after Broadcom told newly acquired VMware that its employees (those who weren't fired) needed to get their "butt" back.