image: Reuters/BBC/ Reed Hastings (L) with co-chief executive Ted Sarandos (R)/ Netflix boss says remote working has negative effects
(BBC) Netflix’s chairman has said working from home has no positive effects and makes debating ideas harder.
But Reed Hastings, who founded the platform, also said its 8,600 employees would not have to return to the office until most of them had received an approved coronavirus vaccine. He predicted that most people would continue to work from home on one day a week, even after the pandemic was over.
A new UK government ad campaign is now asking workers to return to workplaces.
The Wall Street Journal newspaper asked Mr Hastings if he had seen any benefits from staff working from home.
“No. I don’t see any positives,” he replied. “Not being able to get together in person, particularly internationally, is a pure negative,” Mr Hastings told the Wall Street Journal.
“I’ve been super-impressed at people’s sacrifices.”
Netflix is used by almost 200 million households worldwide. And it has already resumed producing its own series, documentaries and films.
“We’re up and running in much of Europe and much of Asia,” Mr Hastings said. “And we’ve got a few things going on already in [Los Angeles],” he added. “The hope is that, through September and October, we can really get – with proper testing – a lot more running.
”Other leading technology companies, however, have suggested employees may never return to the office.
In May, Twitter said staff could work from home “for ever”.
Fujitsu has also made plans to allow staff to work from home permanently.
And Facebook and Google have said employees can work remotely until at least the end of the year.