A third of American companies say they don't know when they'll reopen their offices

Just 67% of US employers said they will require screening, testing or temperature checks.Lindsey Nicholson/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
  • About 35% of US companies don't know when they will allow employees back into the office, per a new survey of executives and senior managers at more than 1,000 companies.
  • The Conference Board, a non-profit think tank that conducts business management research, polled 1,100 C-suite executives, vice presidents, and senior managers in 20 metropolitan areas at the end of August.
  • The survey found that 39% of companies plan to reopen offices by early 2021, while 13% of offices have remained open throughout the pandemic.
  • After the coronavirus pandemic caused swarths of large firms to shut down in mid- to late March, some large firms like Apple and Facebook began bringing employees back over the summer. Others, like Google, have extended work-from-home orders until the summer of 2021.
  • The uncertainty with reopening offices stems from the country's inability to bring infections down. The US has the world's highest cumulative number of confirmed cases at more than 6 million, and many colleges and schools have reported infection clusters as they have reopened.
  • Though drug companies have begun human trials of a coronavirus vaccine, just 5% of business leaders told The Conference Board the drug is a "significant factor" in determining when to reopen.
  • Though most companies surveyed have bought PPE and created social distancing rules for returning to the office, just 67% said they will require screening, testing, or temperature checks.
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