Video conferencing service Zoom, which played a pivotal role in driving the remote work transformation during the pandemic, tells employees to resume in-office work.
As reported by Business Insider, Zoom is stipulating that employees residing within a 50-mile radius of a Zoom office must be physically present at the office for two days every week.
Zoom said it is implementing a "structured hybrid approach" meaning that "employees who live near an office need to be onsite two days a week" as this approach is deemed most effective for the company's operations.
"As a company, we are in a better position to use our own technologies, continue to innovate, and support our global customers," Zoom said.
"We'll continue to leverage the entire Zoom platform to keep our employees and dispersed teams connected and working efficiently."
In the past year, an increasing number of companies have begun to mandate at least a partial return to offices, typically for an average of three days each week. Zoom refrained from issuing any official directives in this regard, potentially due to its standing as a symbol of flexible and remote work practices.
Zoom's value soared during the COVID-19 lockdowns as video-conferencing became pivotal to business operations and personal cumminication. Nonetheless, as pandemic mandates eased and companies began advocating for in-office operations, Zoom's revenue expansion slowed, resulting in a market value decrease of over $100 billion (£78.4 billion) since then.
Over the last year, Zoom's shares have experienced a decline of 39%.
In February, Zoom announced its decision to reduce its workforce by approximately 1,300. Additionally, members of the executive leadership team opted to decrease their base salaries by 20% for the upcoming fiscal year and relinquish their bonuses for fiscal year 2023.
During the announcement of the cuts, Eric Yuan, Zoom CEO, said that the company required a "reset" and had arrived at the "tough but necessary decision" to let go of employees.
"We worked tirelessly … but we also made mistakes," Yuan said.
"We didn't take as much time as we should have to thoroughly analyse our teams or assess if we were growing sustainably, toward the highest priorities."
Zoom offers clarification on revised terms of service
Following a day of receiving criticism for quietly changing its terms of service, Zoom has since clarified that it will not employ audio, video, or chat content from customers to train its AI models without obtaining user permission.
Zoom recently introduced revisions to its terms that appeared to grant the company the authority to use data and content from calls for the purpose of training AI systems.
In a blog post on Monday, Smita Hashim, the Chief Product Officer of Zoom, clarified that the alterations made to the terms were aimed at enhancing transparency concerning the company's data use and enhancing the user experience.
Smita Hashim emphasised that the company's intention was to make clear that customers create and retain ownership of their video, audio, and chat content.
"We have permission to use this customer content to provide value-added services based on this content, but our customers continue to own and control their content," she said.
"For AI, we do not use audio, video, or chat content for training our models without customer consent. Your content is used solely to improve the performance and accuracy of these AI services. And even if you chose to share your data, it will not be used for training of any third-party models."