“We are not asking for everyone to be forced to work from home,” the letter continues.
“We are asking to decide for ourselves, together with our teams and direct manager, what kind of work arrangement works best for each one of us, be that in an office, work from home, or a hybrid approach.”
Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the letter and did not respond to an earlier request for comment on its return-to-work plans.
It spells out specific reasons they’re taking issue with the pilot, ranging from forcing workers to unnecessarily commute — “a huge waste of time as well as both mental and physical resources” — to what they see as an inevitable impact on diversity. “Apple will likely always find people willing to work here, but … being in the office at least 3 fixed days of the week … will make Apple younger, whiter, more male-dominated, more neuro-normative, more able -bodied, in short, it will lead to privileges deciding who can work for Apple, not who’d be the best fit,” the letter added.
According to the current employee, a committee of Apple Together workers drafted the letter in recent weeks after some staffers had previously attempted to raise concerns within Apple’s internal channels “to no avail.”
“There is such a huge disconnect between executive leadership and the individuals,” the employee said, noting that while some managers may want flexibility themselves or can empathize with the individual needs of their direct reports, “the further you go up in the chain, the more that empathy erodes.”
“As Steve said: ‘It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do. We hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.’ Here we are, the smart people that you hired, and we are telling you what to do: Please get out of our way, there is no one-size-fits-all solution, let us decide how we work best, and let us do the best work of our lives.”