Hybrid work policies at major U.S. companies, with examples

Companies the world over are going hybrid. Although the trend of flexible working was on the rise before 2020, the pandemic condensed years of progress towards flexible working into a few short weeks!

Now, a survey of major employers demonstrates that more than 80% maintain that their employees will have some form of flexible working available to them once the pandemic subsides.

On the flip side, employee demands are clear: they do not want to go back to business as usual. Many would even quit if they were required to return full-time to the office.

Employee demands are clear: they do not want to go back to business as usual. Many would even quit if they were required to return full-time to the office.

Although employers are confident that hybrid work policies need to be implemented, there is clearly no ‘correct’ way of doing it.

In 2021, with many offices reopening as the pandemic subsides, businesses of all sizes are creating, or are in the process of creating, hybrid work policies that work for them.

Placed on a work model spectrum, hybrid or flexible work models are those that allow some or all employees the ability to work out of the office at least some of the time.

Zynq's Hybrid workmodel spectrum

Although not all large companies have chosen to go hybrid, a majority are still preparing for a hybrid future and are putting policies in place.

We review a few of these well-known companies below that have announced hybrid work policies.

No alt text provided for this image


Policy Type: 2 Days Flex Policy

Microsoft’s approach to hybrid working involves allowing employees to spend less than 50% of their time off-site. This will likely translate to working two week days off-site for most employees.

However, Microsoft has shown a willingness to leave the door open for individual employees to request a different arrangement. Employees are allowed, with manager approval, to work off-site more than 50% of the time or be completely remote.

The approach demonstrates Microsoft’s belief that the office is still a vital part of work, but it may not always be required for everyone 100% of the time to do their best work.


Policy Type: As-Needed

Soon after the start of the 2020 pandemic, Twitter’s Jack Dorsey gained a lot of media attention for being one of the first CEOs of a major company to boldly announce that employees will be able to work from home permanently, even after offices can reopen.

This remote-first approach set the stage for many more companies to follow, and placed pressure on others to start penning visions and policies of what their reopenings will look like.

Employees at Twitter (and also Square) will be allowed to work from anywhere and will be hired from anywhere. The office will remain open for those who wish to work or collaborate on-site.

This approach represents the highest level of flexibility ‘hybrid’ work can offer before removing the office entirely from the picture.


Policy Type: 2 Days Flex Policy

In May 2021, Google’s CEO announced to employees a hybrid vision quite similar to that of Microsoft.

Most employees would be expected to be on-site at least three days a week and can work the other two “wherever they work best.”

Employees were also told they could work completely remote, as long as their team and role allowed - however compensation would be adjusted accordingly: something that was not very welcome news to many ‘Googlers’ hoping to relocate to cheaper cities.

Google’s approach largely appears to factor the office as being at the heart of work, while acknowledging that there is no going back to pre-pandemic business as usual.

(Image credit: Shutterstock.com / Jonathan Weiss)


Policy Type: 4 Days Flex-Policy

Salesforce’s has a bold vision for the future of work. The President, Brent Hyder, shared his philosophy as follows: “An immersive workspace is no longer limited to a desk in our Towers; the 9-to-5 workday is dead.”

The company envisions the office being dedicated to collaboration and customer meetings, while all other work can be completed where people feel most productive.

As such, a vast majority of employees will be expected to be in the office only once a week. And where a job role allows, the work can be 100% remote.

The approach was crafted after extensive employee feedback and consultation. Salesforce found that although almost no one wanted to come back 9 to 5 -- 80% wanted to keep some level of connection to the office.

Ford Motor

Policy Type: As-Needed

Ford made headlines in March 2021 by being the first major car manufacturer to announce a radically flexible hybrid work approach.

As a result of the pandemic, the company had settled into off-site working for most roles and simply chose to extend the wins of flexible working. Employee surveys demonstrated that 95% of full-time staffers favored flexible working.

As the announcement goes: Ford’s staffers will be allowed to indefinitely work off-site, coming in only if they wish or as-needed for office-centric work like in-person meetings.

Share this article: Link copied to clipboard!