Accenture contractors stated that their plan for returning to work began on August 1st.
Facebook had announced that employees would be delayed returning to work until 2022. However, CNBC reports that Accenture contractors have been in contact since the week prior. This may not surprise, as The Verge reported previously that Accenture contractors in Texas were given instructions to return to work as soon as October 2020.
A Facebook spokesperson told The Verge that the 2022 Return to Office Plan applies to most full-time and contingent employees in the US, regardless of whether Facebook or another contracting company employs them.
“While most Facebook employees and contingent workers work from home, some people have returned to work in offices that have been reopened at reduced capacities and adhered to strict safety and health standards. It doesn’t matter if a person is a full-time worker or a contingent worker.
Role and responsibilities seem to be the most important factor in whether or not an employee can continue working remotely—the workers CNBC spoke to included contractors who generated data for Facebook’s machine-learning model. The contractors were allowed to work remotely for two weeks while preparing to return to the office on August 1.
FACEBOOK SAYS JOBS ARE MORE SUCCESSFUL IN PERSON
For contractors working in moderation, the main concern from Facebook and other platforms is that sensitive user content — including frequently traumatic imagery — can only be viewed on secured company machines to avoid privacy issues. This logic might not be as applicable to machine learning, especially considering CNBC reports that the contractors it spoke with have worked remotely for more than a year. However, security concerns and increasing pressure to improve moderation may also have been concerns.
Facebook refused to reveal how many contractors were working in person when asked. Accenture and Facebook both claim that they have strict COVID-19 protocols in place for their employees. Facebook requires all employees to wear masks, and in certain cases, office workers must be vaccinated according to local regulations. However, these protocols help keep employees safe and pose a risk to family members who are not allowed to be vaccinated.