In response to the uproar caused by its upcoming ban on telecommuting, Yahoo issued a brief statement this evening acknowledging that its work-at-home ban runs contrary to practices in the tech industry as a whole.
"This isn't a broad industry view on working from home," Yahoo said in a statement published by The New York Times. "This is about what is right for Yahoo right now."
A spokesperson declined to elaborate and said, "We don't discuss internal matters."
Yahoo's new policy, which requires employees to work in the company's offices, immediately ignited a firestorm of criticism. In a memo that leaked out over the weekend, human resources chief Jackie Reses informed the company's workforce that as of June, any existing work-from-home arrangements would no longer be honored.
"To become the absolute best place to work, communication and collaboration will be important, so we need to be working side-by-side," reads the memo.
The new policy was criticized as standoffish in an industry where competition is intense for talented employees and especially ill advised at a company that has over the years battled declining morale among the rank and file. Some pointed out that CEO Marissa Mayer, a new mother who reportedly took only two weeks of maternity leave, should have more empathy for the needs of employees juggling time-conflicting commitments.
However, while working at home has become common at many tech companies, especially at ones eager to show off the benefits of collaborative Web-based software tools, some say the creative process suffers by not being able to share ideas in person.