Apple delays mandatory return to office until January 2022, citing COVID-19 surge

Apple will delay its mandatory return to office until January 2022 due to a rise in COVID-19 cases. Apple will give employees three months notice before they can return to in-person employment.
Deirdre Obrien, senior vice president for people and retail, sent an email to employees this evening. She encouraged them to get vaccinated, and also noted that Apple retail stores are still open.

She wrote that she understands frustration at the fact that the pandemic has not ended. This period was a difficult time for many colleagues across the globe. It has brought about great suffering, tragedy, and heartbreak. We are here to support each other and stand by one another in these difficult times.

The company had previously been against employees working remotely and changed its position in June when Tim Cook announced that he would be testing a hybrid model where employees would return to work three days per week, starting in September. The date was moved to October or later, and is now in the New Year.

Some employees strongly opposed this model and wanted a more flexible policy that allows anyone to work remotely.