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After Pandemic, Shrinking Need for Office Space Could Crush Landlords

Roughly 17.3 percent of office space in Manhattan is available for lease, the most in at least three decades. Asking rents have dropped to just over $74 a square foot, from nearly $82 at the beginning of 2020, according to the real estate services company Newmark. Elsewhere, asking rents are largely flat from a year ago, including in Boston and Houston, but have climbed slightly in Chicago.The Japanese clothing brand Uniqlo, whose United States headquarters are in Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood, recently relocated to another building nearby, an open layout with tables designed for 130 people who will come into the office only a …

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Returning to the Office Sparks Anxiety and Dread for Some

Last fall, after some of the restrictions had eased in Germany, Trivago, a travel company based in Düsseldorf, let employees work remotely three weeks of the month and then spend one week in the office. The office weeks were designed for collaboration and were treated like celebrations, with balloons hanging from the ceilings and employees plied with coffee and muffins, said Anja Honnefelder, the chief people officer and general counsel of the company.But the experiment failed, she said. “We saw that many of the people only came back for two or three days during the week because it felt …

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PingPong is a video chat app for product teams working across multiple time zones

From the earliest days of the pandemic, it was no secret that video chat was about to become a very hot space.
Over the past several months investors have bankrolled a handful of video startups with specific niches, ranging from always-on office surveillance to platforms that encouraged plenty of mini calls to avoid the need for more lengthy team-wide meetings. As the pandemic wanes and plenty of startups begin to look toward hybrid office models, there are others who have decided to lean into embracing a fully remote workforce, a strategy that may require new tools.
PingPong, a recent launch …

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How the Pandemic Changed Office Design: Hot Desks and Zoom Rooms

Since the pandemic sent workers home last year, a slew of modifications have been made to office buildings to protect against the spread of the coronavirus. Now, as companies prepare to bring workers back, experts say even more changes are on the way.Expect expanded gathering spaces and fewer personal workstations, for instance, changes that are being fueled by the success of working from home. Companies like Google, Microsoft and Walmart have already announced proposals for hybrid work models that will allow employees to continue to work remotely at least a few days a week.These new arrangements mean companies …

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Ministry of Supply Sold Office Apparel. It Has Had to Rethink Things.

Within weeks, the world changed, though the extent of the shift would not become clear for months. Mr. Advani recalled a sign posted in the brand’s stores in mid-March that said it would reopen on April 1. “It turned out that April of 2021 would have been ambitious,” he said.At the time, the company was not alone in believing that it simply needed to ride out a monthslong storm before normalcy returned. It put retail store staff to work on remote projects like sending gifts and handwritten notes to its best customers, and tapped the Paycheck Protection Program to pay …

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Companies Put Return-to-Work Plans in Motion

A year and a pandemic ago, over 100,000 people filled the central business district in Charlotte, N.C., pouring out of offices, including several recently built skyscrapers, and into restaurants, bars and sports venues. Then as the coronavirus sent employees to their homes, much of the city center quickly went quiet and dark.The return of those employees to their offices has been halting and difficult. Last fall, Fifth Third Bank began bringing back workers, but soon reversed course. LendingTree, which is moving from the suburbs to the city, is waiting for the end of the school year. Wells Fargo has …

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11 Steps to Impress Your Boss and Thrive in Your Job

“I would have asked him about it, but the fact that he beat me to it is great,” Ms. Aaron said. “All I had to do was review and sign off.”Bring recommendations. When asking your manager for guidance on an issue, explain the options you thought about, which you prefer and why. This shows you’ve done the research, understand the details and can smartly evaluate trade-offs. It also lets your boss choose among options rather than have to come up with them.When you ask for feedback or a decision, specify a due date. “Don’t let them …

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Use Git data to optimize your developers’ annual reviews

3 metrics can help you understand true performance quality

Alex Circei

8 hours

Alex Circei
Contributor

Alex Circei is CEO and co-founder of Waydev, a Git analytics tool that measures engineers’ performance automatically.

The end of the year is looming and with it one of your most important tasks as a manager. Summarizing the performance of 10, 20 or 50 developers over the past 12 months, offering personalized advice and having the facts to back it up — is no small task.
We believe that the only unbiased, accurate and insightful way to understand how your developers are working, progressing and — last but definitely not least — how …

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Austin-based ReturnSafe raises $3.25 million for its employee health management tools

ReturnSafe, a symptom checking and contact tracing employee health management toolkit for businesses, has raised $3.25 million in financing from investors including Fifty Years and Active Capital. 
With companies looking to reopen operations and have their employees return to work safely, management toolkits that track employee health are piling into the market offering all sorts of strategies to maintain a safe work environment.
These include offerings from companies like WorkSafe; or the ProtectWell tool from Microsoft and UnitedHealth; or NSpace, which has similar features and a scheduling tool for booking office space safely.
For its part, ReturnSafe is boasting six figure …

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Google Delays Return to Office and Eyes ‘Flexible Work Week’

OAKLAND, Calif. — With the pandemic still in full swing and the first doses of a coronavirus vaccine just starting to ship in the United States, Google has pushed back the planned return to the office by a few months, to September 2021.But even as it extends the remote work period for most of its staff, Google is laying out a series of proposed changes that may substantially alter how its employees and people at other technology companies will work.In an email to the staff on Sunday night, Sundar Pichai, chief executive of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, said the …

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