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Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Companies are readying workers to return to the office in phased and limited capacities. 

Why it matters: With 29% of the U.S. population having received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, businesses are inching toward reopening at different paces depending on geography and previously announced policies. 

On the West Coast: It’s slow and gradual in areas deemed moderate risk or in the final stages of reopening.

  • Uber reopened its San Francisco offices this week with a 20% occupancy limit.
  • Facebook plans to start opening its Bay Area offices in May at 10% capacity
  • Microsoft is reopening its Redmond, Washington offices this week as it moves into its fourth stage of reopening.  

In New York: It’s still a little unclear.

  • Employers are generally expecting 45% of the workforce to return to work by September, but that number is down from an expected 48% by July when surveyed last October, according to an early March survey from the Partnership for New York City
  • Additionally, the survey notes 14% of companies say they still don’t know when the majority of workers will be back.
  • One sign offices won’t return to full capacity: JPMorgan Chase, which started to reopen in the fall, may be giving up a significant amount of office space in lower Manhattan, as well as PwC and Yelp.

In Miami: It’s about to get even more crowded.

  • Softbank is the latest tech giant looking to join the Miami expansion party, as the company is reportedly looking for as much as 100,000 square feet of space, according to the Wall Street Journal.
  • The Japanese tech conglomerate would join finance giants Goldman Sachs, Blackstone and Starwood, which are all considering or have made plans for new Miami outposts. 

The big picture: A vast majority (82%) of business leaders said last year they would allow employees to work remotely in some capacity after the pandemic. That sentiment will continue to shape how, when and if offices reopen.

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
Mar 29, 2021 - Technology

Tech companies begin opening offices back up

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Facebook, Microsoft and Uber have all announced plans to begin letting some general workers back into their offices, albeit at reduced levels.

Why it matters: Unlike the rapid shuttering of offices a year ago at the start of the pandemic, the reopenings are expected to be phased and gradual, with many companies foreseeing a hybrid environment where many workers come in only part of the week.

CDC says fully vaccinated people don't have to wear masks indoors

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky. Photo: Erin Clark-Pool/Getty Images

The CDC announced in new guidance Thursday that anyone who is fully vaccinated can participate in indoor and outdoor activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, regardless of crowd size.

What they're saying: "If you are fully vaccinated, you are protected, and you can start doing the things that you stopped doing because of the pandemic," CDC Director Rochelle Walensky will say at a White House press briefing.

Colonial Pipeline reportedly paid hackers nearly $5 million in ransom

Photo: Logan Cyrus/AFP via Getty Images

Colonial Pipeline paid hackers linked to the DarkSide cybercrime group nearly $5 million in cryptocurrency after last week's ransomware attack, Bloomberg first reported and the New York Times confirmed.

Why it matters: The breach of the largest refined fuels pipeline in the U.S. triggered new concerns about the vulnerability of the country's increasingly digitized energy systems.