The shift could help remake the U.S. job market in tech, as Facebook now has more than 40,000 employees.
Workplace from Facebook, the tech giant's communication offering for companies and employees, has more than five million paid users, up from three million in October past year. "We need to do this in a way that's thoughtful and responsible, so we're going to do this in a measured way".
The news is another sign work-from-home policies may be here to stay for the internet industry, which continues to operate despite COVID-19. Both Twitter and now Shopify have also made a decision to let some employees work remotely on a permanent-basis.More news: Federal government releases guidelines on nursing home visitation
Zuckerberg sounded pretty sure in an interview with the BBC that the upcoming United States election will see attempts at interference, but said his company has learned a lot over the past four years, after an alleged army of Russian trolls was suspected of coordinated action on Facebook against Democratic Party candidate Hilary Clinton. The social network became the biggest company to announce a mass-scale, permanent, remote working plan, leading to predictions that many other companies will be forced to follow.
Zuckerberg went on to say as many as 40 percent of Facebook's current employees are "extremely interested" or "somewhat interested" in working from home on a permanent basis, citing an internal survey.
Geographically, Facebook will start with areas close to its existing offices, including Portland, San Diego, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, Zuckerberg said. This is applicable in not only hiring but also in retaining some employees who just had to quit as they were relocating, he added. The CEO says the the move "is going to open up a lot of new talent that previously wouldn't have considered moving to a big city", the Washington Post reports.More news: Ontario announces first wave of COVID-19 research projects
But for employees, there is a potential downside to the remote work. Facebook is indicating it'll lower the pay for staffers who move out of a city with a high cost of living.
"That means if you live in a location where the cost of living is dramatically lower, or the cost of labor is lower, then salaries do tend to be somewhat lower in those places", Zuckerberg said. Zuckerberg said he expects only about 25% of Facebook employees to return to their desks initially as the company looks to reopen its offices. It'll also involve addressing certain challenges, like ensuring remote workers don't lose out on career advancement. He projected that around 50% of the company's workforce could be remote in the next 5-10 years.More news: NASCAR's first race since coronavirus pause draws 6.32M viewers