After reading EPAM’s 3/7 email announcement about returning to Google offices, I immediately asked about working remotely.
The negotiation process was long-winded and frustrating. I got redirected from Person A to Person B to Person C back to Person A again. Everyone I talked to (both at Google and EPAM) seemed to support continued WFH, but no one seemed to have a definite answer whether it was feasible or not. (This could be because Google’s vendor policies have become more strict lately; for example, TVC badges only work at GOVO buildings now.)
It was not until 3/15 that I was told what to do next. Person A explained that EPAM wouldn’t know whether I could keep my remote access until the flex period of 90 days after the RTO date of 3/14 was over. His best guess was I would, since my current team has several on-call support engineers that work in the midnight hours.
In the meantime, I was told to check in at the new SJC2460 vendor building and re-activate my badge. Once the flex period ends in June, they will see about next steps. Worst comes to worst, I might need to switch to a non-Google project. (Even though they don’t treat TVCs as well as their full-time employees, Alphabet still has some nice perks so I would prefer if that wasn’t the case.)