Goldman Sachs became one of the first major banks to end remote working on Tuesday, when it asked a majority of its US and UK-based workers to return to the office in June.
In a note to employees, Goldman executives demanded that workers “make plans to be able to return to the office” by June 14 in the United States and June 21 in Britain.
“We strive to move forward on our journey to gradually bring our people together, where it is possible to do so safely,” said the memo, which was signed by David M. Solomon, CEO of the company. , as well as his two high lieutenants, John E. Waldron and Stephen M. Scherr. Executives said the bank was “now in a position to activate the next steps in our return to power strategy.”
Exceptions would be made where appropriate, according to the memo, which noted that in India and Latin America, where Goldman also employs workers, health concerns remain significant. But in New York City, where the bank is headquartered, pandemic restrictions are lifted on May 19 as coronavirus cases decline and vaccination rates rise. The city expects more full offices, restaurants and subways this summer.
Banks, which are among New York’s largest employers, have been keen to bring workers back to the office, fearing that a long period of working from home will hurt the training, camaraderie and work culture that thrives. when people are together. Many of these companies have allowed at least some, if not most, to work from the office during most of the pandemic.
Goldman began a gradual return to the office last summer, with temperature controls and other new security protocols. In recent months, he has operated with 20% or more of his regular staff in the US office and 25% or more in Britain, a spokesperson said. But as more people get their shots in New York and London, and the company adds thousands of new hires who will show up for work this summer, it was time to move on, according to the memo and someone familiar with Goldman executives. ‘thinking, who said the new notification has been in the works for about a month.
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At least one other major financial firm has expressed interest in returning to the office in full force this summer. JPMorgan Chase, the country’s largest bank, plans to open all of its offices in the United States on May 17 for employees who wish to return voluntarily. This will be followed by a mandatory return in July, when workers will be moved in and out of the office in accordance with security measures that will limit the capacity of each office.
Jamie Dimon, chief executive of JPMorgan, who has previously spoken about the benefits of working from the office, reiterated his comments at a Wall Street Journal CEO conference on Tuesday morning.
“We want people to go back to work, and I think in September, October, it will look exactly like it was before,” Mr. Dimon said. “And yeah, the commute, you know yeah, people don’t like to commute, but so what.”
Mr Dimon, who said he was “about to cancel all of my Zoom meetings,” also admitted some reluctance to the news back in the office. “A husband’s wife sent me a nasty message about, ‘How can you get him in?
Other banks have not yet mandated a return.
Citigroup said that while it will invite additional workers to the office in July, it does not expect around 30% of its North American-based employees to return by the end of the summer. Bank of America plans to send 30-day notices to employees it wants to invite back, a spokesperson said, but the company has not announced a timeline for doing so, although chief executive Brian Moynihan of the bank, recently said the transition would not. occur until after Labor Day.
The Goldman Sachs memo on Tuesday targeted the roughly 20,000 employees who are based at the company’s New York headquarters as well as other US cities, including San Francisco and Dallas, a person familiar with the numbers said. Goldman employs around 6,000 other workers in Britain, where it operates in London and another smaller office, the person added.