Google employees who work from home could lose money
Reuters | New York
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
Google employees based in the same office before the pandemic could see different changes in pay if they switch to working from home permanently, with long commuters hit harder, according to a company pay calculator. It is an experiment taking place across Silicon Valley, which often sets trends for other large employers.
Facebook and Twitter also cut pay for remote employees who move to less expensive areas, while smaller companies including Reddit and Zillow have shifted to location-agnostic pay models, citing advantages when it comes to hiring, retention and diversity. Alphabet Inc’s Google stands out in offering employees a calculator that allows them to see the effects of a move.
But in practice, some remote employees, especially those who commute from long distances, could experience pay cuts without changing their address. “Our compensation packages have always been determined by location, and we always pay at the top of the local market based on where an employee works from,” a Google spokesperson said, adding that pay will differ from city to city and state to state.
One Google employee, who asked not to be identified for fear of retaliation, typically commutes to the Seattle office from a nearby county and would likely see their pay cut by about 10% by working from home full-time, according to estimates by the company’s Work Location Tool launched in June.
The employee was considering remote work but decided to keep going to the office - despite the two-hour commute. “It’s as high of a pay cut as I got for my most recent promotion. I didn’t do all that hard work to get promoted to then take a pay cut,” they said.
Jake Rosenfeld, a sociology professor at Washington University in St. Louis who researches pay determination, said Google’s pay structure raises alarms about who will feel the impacts most acutely, including families.