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For a tech guy, Mike de Vere, chief executive of fintech software startup Zest AI, has a contrarian return-to-work plan for his 100 employees: he wants them in the office full time.
Mr. de Vere said having employees together in the Burbank, Calif., headquarters improves communication, builds trust and allows for them to absorb knowledge from more experienced colleagues.
“We believe that we will be our best selves the more that we are together,” he said.
As more tech companies leverage the promise of flexible work arrangements as a competitive advantage, some are going the opposite route, betting that a strong office culture is what will help them recruit and retain the best talent.
Proponents of fully in-office work cite a range of benefits, from the collaboration that can result from happenstance interactions to easier communication. Plus, they add, plenty of people enjoy working in offices, especially after months spent, for some, in makeshift arrangements. Given the tech industry’s status as a bellwether for workplace trends, professionals in many industries are watching to see where it lands.