About WFH - Microsoft to let employees work from home permanently
Software giant Microsoft will let employees work from home permanently if they choose to, US media reported on Friday, becoming the latest employer to expand work-from-home provisions prompted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
US tech news website The Verge said most Microsoft employees are still at home as the health crisis drags on, and the company doesn’t expect to reopen its US offices until January of next year at the earliest.
But when it does, workers can choose to work from home permanently with their manager’s approval, although they will have to give up their office space.
Working parents’ woes deepen as schools shut down again 學校再次關閉 在職父母的麻煩加深
Working parents of kindergarten and elementary school students are struggling again to find suitable childcare options, as all schools in the Seoul metropolitan area have been ordered to move classes online until Sept. 11.
Although the measure was in response to the recent surge in the number of infections among students, teachers and other education workers, remote learning poses a burden to working parents as younger children are less likely to stay focused on lectures for a longer time.
The only option for working parents is sending their children to "emergency child care" classes, set up at schools for kindergarteners and younger elementary students who are in need of care during the day.
Source article: https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1410043 ; https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1396438
Topic: The New, Hip Co-Working Spaces
Technology has upended where we work. The line between work and play has been blurred, and the difference between the office and home has all but disappeared.
As a result, there's a new class of white-collar workers who roam the earth looking for places to get their jobs done.
Some of them work from home, curled up on the couch or in a home office — maybe with a drone hovering nearby. Others camp out at expensive cafes, refilling their mugs of fancy coffee throughout the day.
But increasingly, these untethered employees are gathering in a new kind of office known as the co-working space.
Surely, you've heard of these places. But their numbers have multiplied across the country in the past few years, filling a niche for those who need more than a cafe but less than an office.
They now come in a wide range of options. Some are fancy; some are not. Some require memberships; some do not. Some target technology workers; others are for writers or small businesses. And in the Los Angeles area, there seems to be a co-working option for every neighborhood and every profession.
Before you rush out to join a co-working space, there are pros and cons to consider.
Some believe working away from a traditional office improves productivity. A study published last year in The Quarterly Journal of Economics examined Ctrip, a 16,000-employee Chinese travel agency, where call-center employees were randomly assigned to work in either the office or the home. Those who worked from home were 13 percent more productive, the report found. When Ctrip gave all its workers the option to work from home, productivity grew even further, to 22 percent.
Another study published last year in the journal Sleep Health, found that people who had flexible work schedules slept better than those who had to report to the office at specific times.
But there are studies that raise doubts about working remotely. "How Effective Is Telecommuting?" published last year in the journal Psychological Science in the Public Interest, found that working from home can make people feel sad. The report says this is likely because of the social and professional isolation experienced from being home alone for too long.
但也有研究對於遠距工作提出了質疑。去年發表於公共利益心理科學期刊的研究報告「電子通勤效果如何？」發現，在家工作會讓人感到悲傷。報告稱，這很可能是孤獨在家太久而產生的社會與職業隔離感造成的。Source article: https://paper.udn.com/udnpaper/POH0067/293698/web/
What can employers do if workers avoid COVID-19 vaccines?
What can employers do if workers avoid COVID-19 vaccines?
They can require vaccination and fire employees who don’t comply or take other actions such as withholding company perks or charging extra for health insurance.
Businesses for months have been encouraging workers to get vaccinated, in some cases offering incentives like time off or gift cards. But more are taking a harder stance and requiring vaccinations for any remaining holdouts, a push that has gained momentum since Pfizer’s vaccine recently received full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Employers “feel like they’ve sort of hit that point where the unvaccinated are not going to do it unless there’s something significant making them do it,” said Wade Symons, a partner with Mercer, a benefits consultant.
It’s legal for businesses to require the shots, and they could fire employees who don’t comply. In other cases, workers might be required to wear masks or get regular tests for the virus. Some companies also are considering making the unvaccinated pay more for their health insurance.
At Delta Air Lines, unvaccinated employees on the company health plan will be charged $200 a month to help cover costs for possible COVID-19 hospital stays.
Symons said other employers will more likely add smaller charges of $20 or $25 per paycheck that might be refunded once the employee is vaccinated.
雇主也可能限制公司的公共空間使用權，只允許打過疫苗的員工上公司健身房運動，或進行商務旅行。在拉斯維加斯，美高梅國際酒店集團（MGM Resorts International）則規定未接種疫苗的員工若被確診出染疫，公司將不會在其隔離期間給薪。
Employers might also restrict the use of office space, company gyms or business travel only for the vaccinated. In Las Vegas, MGM Resorts International has said unvaccinated employees will not be paid for time off to quarantine if they test positive for the virus.
Vaccine requirements will mainly come from businesses that need workers on a job site, Symons said.
Employers have to offer exemptions or accommodations from vaccine requirements for some who don’t get the shots for medical or religious reasons.
迪士尼和俄亥俄州立大學（The Ohio State University）是強制員工打疫苗的機構中規模較大的集團，他們表示輝瑞疫苗已經得到食藥署的完整批准，因此將強制要求員工施打。美國國防部長奧斯丁
Walt Disney World and Ohio State University are among the large employers that said they’ll make vaccination mandatory since Pfizer’s shot was given the FDA’s full approval. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin also has said that military troops must immediately begin to get the vaccine. Source article: https://chinapost.nownews.com/20210903-2749357