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Google is having second thoughts about the hybrid working revolution

remote working
(Image credit: Image source: Shutterstock/bikeriderlondon)

Google has mixed feelings about the prospect of hybrid working, whereby employees divide their time between home and the office, the firm's latest 10-K report suggests.

The new report explains the company is still experimenting with the model and that it expects its competitiveness and “corporate culture” to take a hit as a result.

"As we prepare to return our workforce in more locations back to the office in 2021, we may experience increased costs as we prepare our facilities for a safe return to work environments and experiment with hybrid work models, in addition to potential effects on our ability to compete effectively and maintain our corporate culture," the report reads.

When the pandemic was first classified and lockdowns started to be enforced around the world, Google was among the first companies to shutter its offices and send employees home. With its suite of collaboration and communication tools, Google Workspace, it was essentially at the forefront of the global switch to the “new normal”.

In the summer of 2020, meanwhile, it announced that its offices would remain shut for the majority of its workforce until at least the summer of 2021.

Expecting corporate culture to take a hit doesn’t mean Google is giving up on hybrid remote working, however, but the company remains unclear about how the future of its offices will pan out.