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Reimagining the Workplace – From Employer Choice to Employee Choice
It’s been a little over two months since we introduced mandatory work from home for Palo Alto Networks employees. Our mission is enabling our customers to work securely no matter where they are, and we are well equipped with the tools, technology and security to make this work.
Now, as localities weigh reopening and, as importantly, as we listen to the feedback and concerns of our employees, we recognize that the next phase cannot be “one size fits all.” We believe that various permutations of work from home will become the new normal, with not every employee reporting to the office every day and a much broader degree of choice for employees.
So, we’re addressing this proactively.
FLEXWORK: A New Way of Working for Palo Alto Networks
We have established a new program we are calling FLEXWORK, a new way of working for Palo Alto Networks. Initially valid through the end of this calendar year as we monitor adoption, here’s how we’ll approach our workplaces:
Reopening offices as regulations allow and making them COVID SAFE+: We will continue to open offices around the world as local regulations allow, prioritizing the well-being of our employees as we do so. We are going the extra mile in ensuring that our teams have a fully socially distanced opportunity to return to work: rethinking meetings, food service, introducing signs, plus enhanced and more frequent cleaning of common spaces, etc.
From Employer choice – to Employee choice: Under FLEXWORK, a few essential employees will be encouraged to work from the office, while others will be able to tell us how often they plan to work from the office. This could be coming to work 1-3 days a week for functional and cross-functional meetings, and collaborative projects, or working from home during that time.
We will introduce team days and team spaces: these will be days when teams can come to the office – be in a large socially distanced space to collaborate and celebrate together. This will be the new norm in creating a sense of togetherness, purpose and social bonding.
From presence to productivity: We will focus on communication, upskilling, remote people management and program management skills. We will work with our teams to keep them up to date on our business and introduce non-technical training ladders which focus on helping our employees stay productive in this remote work environment.
Make home more comfortable to work from: With more time being spent in home workspaces, we’ll make resources available for key items, such as office chairs and external monitors.
Reimagining Workplaces and Perks: We’re conscious that the gyms, cafes and micro-kitchens that have become the norm for many companies now provide reasons for our employees to be cautious – some of these perks will have to be rethought. We’ll follow how our teams experience and utilize this new policy, and rethink our workspaces and benefits accordingly.
FLEXWORK will be initially valid until the end of 2020. We plan to consult, observe and continue to enhance the FLEXWORK experience. We are inviting companies to join our FLEXWORK experiment. If interested, please email email@example.com with your suggestions, or have your Chief People Officer join our discussion forums.