A topic that has been dominating the headlines across the past few weeks is that Zoom had instructed all of their workers to return to office.

The company that found success from letting people work remotely are now insisting their staff make a return to office (well, for the most part).

Anybody living within 50 miles (80km) of a Zoom office should now work in person at least twice a week.

For the 200 people working in Zoom’s brand new London office, this means travel into the capital is now an essential part of their job.

So if the company that allowed the world to work from home have now put an end to their own practice, is remote work dead for good?

Let’s explore the issue here.

Remote Working Is No Longer A Necessity

Before the pandemic, the share of days worked from home in the US was about 5%.

That’s because remote work was a luxury. It was still the norm to work in the office daily, regardless of travel time.

Then the world shut down and things change.

Zoom allowed us to work from home – it was very successful for them.

Zoom’s annual revenue increased drastically across the course of the global pandemic, rising from 330 million in 2018 to 4.39 billion in 2022.

So why have they made the change to end remote work themselves?

Well, now that the world is (somewhat) back to normal and we’re allowed to mix and mingle again, remote working is no longer required.

There are no restrictions on being in the office, and the days of not mixing with people are long gone.

This is why Zoom has reached this conclusion.

Remote work will now go back to being a luxury.

Is The Return To Office Actually The Right Call?

So now that remote working is dead, we’ll see increased productivity levels and more focused employees, right?

Well, maybe not.

There are several studies that show that remote working can actually benefit how people work.

Here are some examples.

A study by Standford of 16,000 workers over nine months found that working from home increased productivity by 13%.

A different study by Owl Labs found that, on average, those who work remotely spent 10 minutes less a day being unproductive.

Furthermore, a University of Chicago report found that nearly six in ten survey respondents reported higher productivity when working remotely.

If you’re a Decision Maker or CEO, consider the impact a change in working policy could have on your team.

Don’t make drastic decisions – ensure you’re making the right choice for your team and business.