Google employees who choose to work from home permanently could face pay cuts, according to a Reuters report. Workers with longer commutes would receive the biggest cuts.
Google employees could face pay cuts if they choose to work permanently from home
Reuters found that an employee living in Stamford, Connecticut, about an hour from Google’s New York office, would be paid 15% less working from home, but a colleague living in New York would see no cut.
Another Google employee opted to take a two-hour commute to the Seattle office in lieu of a 10% pay cut for working from home full-time.
An employee working in the New York office will be paid the same as someone working remotely in the same area, a Google spokesman told Reuters.
“Our compensation packages have always been determined by location, and we always pay at the local market maximum based on where an employee works from,” a Google spokesperson told Reuters.
Julia Pollak, chief economist at ZipRecuiter, said companies that cut salaries for remote workers may see a decrease in employee retention.
“Culturally, we’re seeing an increase in wage transparency, and people feel very strongly that it’s not fair to be paid different amounts for the same work and for the same quality of work output,” Pollak told.
Pollak pointed to reports that telecommuting is here to stay and that employees are willing to quit and find work elsewhere if it is taken away. He said it is difficult to change an employee’s salary regardless of location.
While telecommuting comes with fewer costs, such as gas for commuting, employees will argue that the quality of their work hasn’t changed, so their pay shouldn’t either, Pollak said.
The company’s CEO says the rise of telecommuting has changed the economics: Companies pay employees based on the value of their work, not their location.