Work at Work Program

YAHOO in 2001.With the recent announcement by Yahoo that they will be eliminating the work-at-home  option for their employees, the Human Resources office has been flooded by a request from one of our associates seeking a clarification of’s policies.

First of all, we must say that we applaud the courage of Yahoo’s CEO for making the tough decision to bring all employees into the office. Citing the need to improve “communication and collaboration,” a recently leaked memo announced the end of the work-at-home option. This came as a surprise to many given Yahoo’s many contributions to the productivity of office and work-at-home employees everywhere through such services as:

  • Flickr
  • Yahoo Movies
  • Yahoo Games
  • Yahoo Music
  • Yahoo Shopping

Even Yahoo News can enhance productivity as a recent look at that page provided a link to an article on  “The little-known dark side of Monopoly,” as well as an update on “So You Think You Can Dance.” The implications for the modern office worker are so obvious that we need not state them here.

In addition to those services, anyone fortunate enough to have a Yahoo email address is familiar with the benefits it provides. While other mail services apply so-called “spam filters” to block some messages, Yahoo ensures that every person receives every message on cheap-prescriptions-from-Canada, local-singles-are-looking-for-you, and life-insurance-for $10-a-month. Users of competing email services with active filtering will have no way of learning that they can “Buy a new iPad for just $1.” and so they will be forced to pay the full retail price.

Now, after years of faithfully following trends and successfully avoiding creating any, Yahoo has broken new ground in a back-to-the-future sort of way. Coming to the question of what this means to associates of, the answer is very little.

Long-term associates of will remember last week when we instituted the ground-breaking “work at work” program. Under this program we began to institute changes based on the expectation that associates actually work while they are in the office. While still in the early stages of implementation, we are encouraged by the results thus far. Relying on the traditional management tool for measuring office worker productivity, we can confidently state that everybody “looks real busy.” Interviews with a sample of associates confirmed that they were, in fact, real busy.

While some cynics still question the value of those measures, we have also been able to see positive results in more quantitative measures such as the number of cars in the parking lot, paper inventories in the office supply cabinet and the average time it takes to get an elevator. Based on these results we can positively assert that we will continue with the work-at-work program through the end of this week. Unless the wind blows from a different direction in which case all bets are off.

NOTE: There is one update to the work-at-work program. After a recent incident in the stairwell, “Snuggies” will no longer be allowed in the office. We apologize to any who are inconvenienced by this policy change, but it must remain in effect at least until the pending lawsuit is resolved.

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