DETROIT — Ford Motor Co. is again delaying its return-to-office plans amid the rise of the omicron variant of COVID-19.
The automaker most recently planned to bring back salaried employees with a new hybrid work model beginning in January. The company told employees Monday that it will begin phasing in certain groups of salaried workers in February, with the bulk of the work force not returning until March.
“The state of COVID-19 remains fluid, and despite the success of our ongoing safety protocols and increased vaccination rates, we are shifting the start date of the hybrid work model to March,” Ford said in a statement. “We will begin with a pilot phase for select non-site-dependent employees in February and in March, we expect remaining team members to begin working flexibly between Ford campuses and remote options.”
The new hybrid work model will allow workers to go into offices only when necessary. Ford said it was redesigning its office space to better accommodate this new way of working, with an emphasis on more collaborative spaces and team areas.
A spokeswoman told Automotive News that vaccine requirements for most salaried workers remain in place.