Technology firm Fujitsu is to halve its office space in Japan as it adapts to the coronavirus pandemic, letting staff work flexible hours and working from home will be standard wherever possible.
The announcement follows a similar move in May by social media platform Twitter.
Fujitsu said the “Work Life Shift” programme will offer unprecedented flexibility to its 80,000 workers in the country.
The multinational said in a Japanese language release today: “We will set up hub offices in each area nationwide that demonstrate… our latest IT systems, showcases, and collaboration with customers” Fujitsu said. “We [will] optimise our office scale 50% by 2022”.
The plan will be extended to all domestic employees this month, and will include a monthly stipend of 5000 Yen, or £37 to help staff set up their working from home environment.
Fujitsu employs approximately 130,000 globally, including 8,000 in the UK and Ireland.
The new “work style” will enable us to “further accelerate our transformation into a DX company and continue to create innovation while improving productivity”, Fujitsu added in its Japanese release today.
This change is part of a global cultural post-pandemic shift away from fixed offices towards remote working and working from home. NYSE-listed Shopify is among those that has emphasised that it sees the shift being permanent. As CEO Tobi Lutke put it in May: “Until recently, work happened in the office. “We’ve always had some people remote, but they used the internet as a bridge to the office. This will reverse now.
He added: “The future of the office is to act as an on-ramp to the same digital workplace that you can access from your WFH setup In May, Twitter announced that it would not be reopening its San Francisco offices, instead bringing in a new “distributed workforce”, following both Google and Facebook’s recognition that they are likely to continue with teleworking at least until the end of this year. Earlier that month Google and Facebook said their staff could work from home until the end of the year.
Google originally said it would keep its work from home policy until 1 June, but extended it for seven more months.
Its announcement coincided with a similar move by social media giant Facebook.
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