One by one, the most prestigious of Biglaw firms are coming forward to announce their plans for a return to the office. The vast majority of firms that have notified employees of their reopening plans have targeted a September return, with the summer being used as a transition period in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The latest firm to make its plans known is no different.
Sidley Austin — the firm ranked at No. 6 in the most recent Am Law 100, with $2,462,935,000 gross revenue in 2020 — is in the midst of a “gradual and flexible transition” to its U.S. offices. A statement from the firm details how employees will be reintroduced to the office:
Opportunities to work remotely will remain during the transition and in the future as we continue to adapt to a new work environment post-pandemic. We will listen to the needs of our clients, lawyers and professional staff and respond with empathy and understanding. It is our priority to balance their needs with the opportunity to enhance the cohesive culture that distinguishes Sidley as a great place to work.
Attorneys and staff members will be gently eased back into in-office firm life during this time, with in-person team meetings and social events to help reacquaint teams with the office environment.
By the time September arrives, Sidley will welcome back all personnel, while at the same time making sure to “preserv[e] the ability to work remotely as needed and appropriate.” It certainly sounds like the firm is attempting to be as flexible —- and caring —- as it can be with its reopening plans.
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Staci Zaretsky is a senior editor at Above the Law, where she’s worked since 2011. She’d love to hear from you, so please feel free to email her with any tips, questions, comments, or critiques. You can follow her on Twitter or connect with her on LinkedIn.