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(NBC News)   San Francisco may make working from home mandatory even after COVID-19 is over   (nbcnews.com) divider line
    More: PSA, San Francisco Bay Area, Greenhouse gas, San Francisco, Metropolitan Transportation Commission, San Francisco Bay, member of the transportation commission, SAN FRANCISCO, California  
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2368 clicks; posted to Main » and Politics » on 26 Sep 2020 at 12:17 AM (4 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2020-09-25 8:35:02 PM  
People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.
 
2020-09-25 10:14:30 PM  
My wife's department has been moved to permanent work from home. It'll be a little better when the schools open again, but otherwise sucks for lack of outside human interaction. Even introverts like the occasional hallway chat.
 
2020-09-26 12:19:10 AM  
Well, if rent is going to be the same for an SF apt as it is for a 100 person office space in the rest of "average America" then that figures.
 
2020-09-26 12:21:29 AM  
Love the one dude in the article passionately arguing that no one likes wfh. Yeah dude, I was 2 days wfh pre covid and 2 to 3 days is just perfect.
 
2020-09-26 12:24:11 AM  
Parking is way easier, and no traffic.
 
2020-09-26 12:28:15 AM  
California is the bomb.
Americans are silly to not follow their lead
 
2020-09-26 12:31:31 AM  
This is definitely going to become the norm for office jobs in the Bay Area, even if it doesn't become law.

I quit my job last week and it was permanent WFH until 2022. My new job that I start next week is permanent WFH forever. Neither of the two companies are based in SF.
/The age of offices and cubicles is over.
 
2020-09-26 12:32:29 AM  
I love working from home. A lot of IT companies would allow it long before covid. It saves tons of money, things like providing you with a desk and space at an office, etc.
 
2020-09-26 12:33:09 AM  
I don't see a problem with this. Sure, there are jobs that require a physical presence, including some subsets of paper-pushers, but for the most part, offices are kinda silly. Getting an honest answer from some employers about whether a job requires a physical presence, though... Good luck.
 
2020-09-26 12:36:28 AM  
Here comes the commercial real estate apocalypse.

Also: quite possibly the end of cities as we know them.
 
2020-09-26 12:45:03 AM  

Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.


Quite the opposite: They're proponents of this, because working from home makes people care more about where they live, and makes them willing to spend more on their home. But working from home only 3 days a week means they're still tethered to the same job centers they are now.

Together, that means it would only feed the bubble.
 
2020-09-26 12:45:22 AM  

waxbeans: California is the bomb.
Americans are silly to not follow their lead


Oh it's a bomb alright. Productivity is down, creativity, innovation suffers (at least in IT).  The only companies not confirming this are trying to save face. People need interaction, companies need personal communication to stay competitive. Remember competition?
 
2020-09-26 12:47:05 AM  
I don't see how any government in this country can get away with mandating work from home outside of our current pandemic emergency.  This is abuse of power and government overreach to the extreme.

I'm not against working from home.  I'm rather enjoying it, though it would be nice to have the occasional human interaction besides from an online meeting.
 
2020-09-26 12:57:24 AM  

Enigmamf: Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.

Quite the opposite: They're proponents of this, because working from home makes people care more about where they live, and makes them willing to spend more on their home. But working from home only 3 days a week means they're still tethered to the same job centers they are now.

Together, that means it would only feed the bubble.


On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.
 
2020-09-26 1:03:29 AM  

OgreMagi: I don't see how any government in this country can get away with mandating work from home outside of our current pandemic emergency.  This is abuse of power and government overreach to the extreme.

I'm not against working from home.  I'm rather enjoying it, though it would be nice to have the occasional human interaction besides from an online meeting.


Local governments can work with employers for alternative work schedules. Houston has done that in the past with 4 day work weeks to alleviate traffic congestion & air pollution. Although I believe that might have been opt-in with possible incentives too.
 
2020-09-26 1:05:13 AM  

OgreMagi: Enigmamf: Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.

Quite the opposite: They're proponents of this, because working from home makes people care more about where they live, and makes them willing to spend more on their home. But working from home only 3 days a week means they're still tethered to the same job centers they are now.

Together, that means it would only feed the bubble.

On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.


Time zones and language barriers are the biggest obstacles.
 
2020-09-26 1:06:01 AM  

Claude Ballse: OgreMagi: I don't see how any government in this country can get away with mandating work from home outside of our current pandemic emergency.  This is abuse of power and government overreach to the extreme.

I'm not against working from home.  I'm rather enjoying it, though it would be nice to have the occasional human interaction besides from an online meeting.

Local governments can work with employers for alternative work schedules. Houston has done that in the past with 4 day work weeks to alleviate traffic congestion & air pollution. Although I believe that might have been opt-in with possible incentives too.


I have no problem with a city working with businesses and even offering incentives to promote remote work.  I have a huge problem with them demanding it.

I'm fairly certain the Supreme Court would have issues with it, too.
 
2020-09-26 1:06:49 AM  
Covid 21 will see to that. Fools.
 
2020-09-26 1:08:46 AM  

OgreMagi: Enigmamf: Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.

Quite the opposite: They're proponents of this, because working from home makes people care more about where they live, and makes them willing to spend more on their home. But working from home only 3 days a week means they're still tethered to the same job centers they are now.

Together, that means it would only feed the bubble.

On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.


Outsourcing coding to India was a massive failure for IBM. So I doubt we'll see that as a threat to job loss. Especially when if employers want, they can whip out the H1B visas at any time.

Otherwise, it may actually open up the talent pool for Silicon Valley. Several times a year I've gotten job offers for positions in SV, and I've always turned them down because of the cost of living in the area. If I, and others, can easily telecommute from a greater distance in a more affordable real estate location, that means you now have candidates unlocked that employers never would have had previously.
 
2020-09-26 1:10:43 AM  

Iamos: My wife's department has been moved to permanent work from home. It'll be a little better when the schools open again, but otherwise sucks for lack of outside human interaction. Even introverts like the occasional hallway chat.


Speak for yourself.

We had a "Zoom Happy Hour" with co-workers the other day. I forgot how insufferable salespeople are.

I logged off and was like, "You know, I really didn't miss being around them everyday. I didn't even enjoy seeing them for an hour. At all."

I logged off when it was done and went into my nice, simple, isolated IT bubble where I only deal with people via E-mail and IM as I like it.
 
2020-09-26 1:11:04 AM  

The Smails Kid: OgreMagi: Enigmamf: Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.

Quite the opposite: They're proponents of this, because working from home makes people care more about where they live, and makes them willing to spend more on their home. But working from home only 3 days a week means they're still tethered to the same job centers they are now.

Together, that means it would only feed the bubble.

On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.

Time zones and language barriers are the biggest obstacles.


Every morning I get online at 9am for a meeting with my coworkers in London.  It's the start of my day and the end of their day.  It's possible, though there are difficulties.  The language barrier is a bigger issue, but not insurmountable.  English is the language of business.  If getting a remote job with an American company is a possibility, English will become even more popular.  I deal with our Tokyo office on a regular basis.  The language barrier is sometimes a problem.  Sadly, my entire Japanese vocabulary was learned from anime.  Not good.  Fortunately, a significant percentage of the Japanese have at least passable English skills.  We adapt.

Baka hentai onii-chan!
 
2020-09-26 1:12:33 AM  

OgreMagi: I don't see how any government in this country can get away with mandating work from home outside of our current pandemic emergency.  This is abuse of power and government overreach to the extreme.

I'm not against working from home.  I'm rather enjoying it, though it would be nice to have the occasional human interaction besides from an online meeting.


I'm loving working from home, and since I'm my mother's primary caregiver, I really need to be. And for my kind of work, I get more done at home than in an office with phones and people leaning on my desk all the time; but not all professions are like that.

I'd like to be able to get to the office for real human contact once in a while; but I'd like to get anywhere for real human contact.
 
2020-09-26 1:16:12 AM  

WalkingSedgwick: Here comes the commercial real estate apocalypse.

Also: quite possibly the end of cities as we know them.


They really should transition to housing and work spaces (as for workshops, lab space, and small scale manufacturing/crafting). No need for millions upon millions of square footage for cubicle farms anymore, and there was a dire need for mixed used work space for non-paper work that was not somewhere in the boonies.

Also, we can finally get ride of those 4-8 story "corporate headquarters" that always seemed to bookend some suburban dystopia. Knock that crap down and build a park because rent in the cities will be much cheaper.
 
2020-09-26 1:17:14 AM  

Claude Ballse: OgreMagi: Enigmamf: Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.

Quite the opposite: They're proponents of this, because working from home makes people care more about where they live, and makes them willing to spend more on their home. But working from home only 3 days a week means they're still tethered to the same job centers they are now.

Together, that means it would only feed the bubble.

On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.

Outsourcing coding to India was a massive failure for IBM. So I doubt we'll see that as a threat to job loss. Especially when if employers want, they can whip out the H1B visas at any time.

Otherwise, it may actually open up the talent pool for Silicon Valley. Several times a year I've gotten job offers for positions in SV, and I've always turned them down because of the cost of living in the area. If I, and others, can easily telecommute from a greater distance in a more affordable real estate location, that means you now have candidates unlocked that employers never would have had previously.


One of the dangers of hiring from India is there are schools that teach nothing but how to FAKE having the skills to get a tech job.  There are very talented coders from there.  I work with several.  The trick is to have highly technical interviews to weed out the fakers.  We caught one of those a couple of years ago.  Her resume looked great.  At first the interview was ok.  But as it progressed, it became clear she didn't have a clue and had simply memorized the right stuff, but didn't actually know how to program.  I don't know what she could have expected.  New hires are always on probation for up to a year, though it's usually not more than six months.  You might be able to get away with doing that a couple of times, but eventually people will short emplloyment periods at every company.
 
2020-09-26 1:18:54 AM  

Gyrfalcon: I'd like to be able to get to the office for real human contact once in a while; but I'd like to get anywhere for real human contact.


That's it.  I don't need to go to the office for interaction.  But I am damn sick of sitting at home seven days a week.  I need to get out and do something, damn it!
 
2020-09-26 1:20:58 AM  

WalkingSedgwick: Here comes the commercial real estate apocalypse.

Also: quite possibly the end of cities as we know them.


How easily can modern (or slightly less than modern) office and industrial buildings be converted to residential use?

And by that I mean proper apartments, not just by squatters who move in when they're abandoned; which certainly some will be.
 
2020-09-26 1:21:01 AM  

Claude Ballse: Outsourcing coding to India was a massive failure for IBM. So I doubt we'll see that as a threat to job loss. Especially when if employers want, they can whip out the H1B visas at any time.

Otherwise, it may actually open up the talent pool for Silicon Valley. Several times a year I've gotten job offers for positions in SV, and I've always turned them down because of the cost of living in the area. If I, and others, can easily telecommute from a greater distance in a more affordable real estate location, that means you now have candidates unlocked that employers never would have had previously.


Your second point contradicts the first.

There will always be opportunities for US software workers, partly because there's differences in how people in different countries use software. Someone who has lived in the US for a long time and has experienced using things such as a car on American roads, using a smartphone while in Americanized situations, etc is probably better equipped to make software that is more intuitive for American uses cases.

Nevertheless, a lot of work is going to get outsourced whether to Kentucky, India or Zimbabwe. It's inevitable. This intense move towards teleworking is going to somewhat democratize white collar jobs in software, finance and many other areas.

That might be good in some ways. It will of course decrease somewhat the amount of vibrant and interesting people that live in some areas that have historically been a home for software development.
 
2020-09-26 1:24:00 AM  

khatores: There will always be opportunities for US software workers, partly because there's differences in how people in different countries use software. Someone who has lived in the US for a long time and has experienced using things such as a car on American roads, using a smartphone while in Americanized situations, etc is probably better equipped to make software that is more intuitive for American uses cases.


Americans aren't the only market, though we are probably the largest piece of the market at the moment.  China will pass us up eventually.  They probably already have for some things.
 
2020-09-26 1:25:56 AM  
No reason to spend $6k a month in city for a shack of a home if you can just move your home office to....Wyoming. Also, with the lack of people around, should give folks time and safety to fix that leaning tower downtown.
 
2020-09-26 1:26:57 AM  

zimbach: And by that I mean proper apartments, not just by squatters who move in when they're abandoned; which certainly some will be.


Not exactly the same, but related. San Francisco paid hotels to take in the homeless during the pandemic lock-down.  The hotels had no other sources of income, so went for it.   Real bad idea.  From what I've been reading, some of the hotels have been trashed so badly that they will require major renovation when this mess clears up.  And they'll probably have to eject the people by force.
 
2020-09-26 1:43:19 AM  

tfresh: waxbeans: California is the bomb.
Americans are silly to not follow their lead

Oh it's a bomb alright. Productivity is down, creativity, innovation suffers (at least in IT).  The only companies not confirming this are trying to save face. People need interaction, companies need personal communication to stay competitive. Remember competition?


I support the notion of breaking up Ma-Bell
SO I understand competition
do you support Warren's idea of breaking up the social media companies?
 
2020-09-26 1:53:02 AM  

WalkingSedgwick: Here comes the commercial real estate apocalypse.

Also: quite possibly the end of cities as we know them.


No it won't. There are far too many companies that still rely on having physical offices where people permanently office out of. Additionally, there is far too much already invested for that to just disappear over night. Some companies are toying with ideas, but it isn't going to work.
 
2020-09-26 1:58:55 AM  

WalkingSedgwick: Here comes the commercial real estate apocalypse.

Also: quite possibly the end of cities as we know them.


Here comes living in a 30k sq ft space with skylights and a skatepark... oh, that was SF right before the dot com boom... Hey! Let's have a rave!
 
2020-09-26 1:59:37 AM  

khatores: Claude Ballse: Outsourcing coding to India was a massive failure for IBM. So I doubt we'll see that as a threat to job loss. Especially when if employers want, they can whip out the H1B visas at any time.

Otherwise, it may actually open up the talent pool for Silicon Valley. Several times a year I've gotten job offers for positions in SV, and I've always turned them down because of the cost of living in the area. If I, and others, can easily telecommute from a greater distance in a more affordable real estate location, that means you now have candidates unlocked that employers never would have had previously.

Your second point contradicts the first.

There will always be opportunities for US software workers, partly because there's differences in how people in different countries use software. Someone who has lived in the US for a long time and has experienced using things such as a car on American roads, using a smartphone while in Americanized situations, etc is probably better equipped to make software that is more intuitive for American uses cases.

Nevertheless, a lot of work is going to get outsourced whether to Kentucky, India or Zimbabwe. It's inevitable. This intense move towards teleworking is going to somewhat democratize white collar jobs in software, finance and many other areas.

That might be good in some ways. It will of course decrease somewhat the amount of vibrant and interesting people that live in some areas that have historically been a home for software development.


It won't be a good thing. Companies now have such a massive surplus of labor they can dictate the terms. If before your candidate pool to recruit was relatively limited, companies were doing everything they could to attract and retain employees. This drove up salaries, caused competition of benefits, created nicer work environments, and companies to look at additional methods of incentivzing. Now you really are a faceless drone where you don't matter at all and can be replaced at the drop of the hat. I can have anyone anywhere in the world on the payroll and probably get 4 people for the cost of 1 person running 24 hour shifts considering the benefit of time zones.
 
2020-09-26 2:04:17 AM  

Pfighting Polish: Iamos: My wife's department has been moved to permanent work from home. It'll be a little better when the schools open again, but otherwise sucks for lack of outside human interaction. Even introverts like the occasional hallway chat.

Speak for yourself.

We had a "Zoom Happy Hour" with co-workers the other day. I forgot how insufferable salespeople are.

I logged off and was like, "You know, I really didn't miss being around them everyday. I didn't even enjoy seeing them for an hour. At all."

I logged off when it was done and went into my nice, simple, isolated IT bubble where I only deal with people via E-mail and IM as I like it.


Clearly you need to be more selective in who you do office happy hours with.  Some of us actually choose to spend time together after work, willingly and everything!
 
2020-09-26 2:04:40 AM  
Feel sorry for the people who only have a social life because they go to an office

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-09-26 2:09:33 AM  
I've been working from home since april, in the mean time the office space has been renovated into hot desking and grapewine tells that after the plague telecommuting/cubicle dwelling is going to be 60/40. Most other companies are going to follow suit.

That means that about 50% of the office real estate market just went the way of the Dodo bird. Somebody is going to be needing a bailout 2021.
 
2020-09-26 2:17:01 AM  

Creidiki: I've been working from home since april, in the mean time the office space has been renovated into hot desking and grapewine tells that after the plague telecommuting/cubicle dwelling is going to be 60/40. Most other companies are going to follow suit.

That means that about 50% of the office real estate market just went the way of the Dodo bird. Somebody is going to be needing a bailout 2021.


For a while all that available office space will be taken by businesses that think they need to be in the same location as everyone else.  Silicon Valley and San Francisco are over crowded because you "have to be there".  The only real reason that you have to be there is the talent pool is all located there.  So for a short time, office space will still be a hot commodity.  Eventually reason will set in and companies will stop trying to move there.  Then companies already there will realize they can save a small fortune by relocating since their workers are no longer located there.  The San Francisco Bay Area could go the way of Detroit.  How long this takes is anyone's guess.
 
2020-09-26 2:21:03 AM  

OgreMagi: On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.


The premise is 3 days of work-from-home, not full-time work-from-home, which pretty much negates everything you said.
 
2020-09-26 2:33:30 AM  

AllCatsAreBeautiful: This is definitely going to become the norm for office jobs in the Bay Area, even if it doesn't become law.

I quit my job last week and it was permanent WFH until 2022. My new job that I start next week is permanent WFH forever. Neither of the two companies are based in SF.
/The age of offices and cubicles is over.


Were a fifth of the way into the 21st century. Its time we dragged the business world out of the 80s.
 
2020-09-26 2:36:53 AM  

Iamos: Clearly you need to be more selective in who you do office happy hours with.  Some of us actually choose to spend time together after work, willingly and everything!


My last job was worse.

Introversion FTW. More than happy to just log off and take a long bike ride, or go golf, or work on a project around the house ... alone.

No small chat that feels like people trying to subtly one-up each other in ways ranging from cultural to work-related. No niceties that feel phony or like folks are only being nice because they think they might need something from you at some point. No people pretending to know things about things they truly know nothing about (when you work in IT, you spot these folks a mile away because they're the ones with the nicest phones but barely know how to use the simplest of features). No silly pot lucks with lukewarm food when I'd rather have chicken nuggets, anyway, or baby showers where everyone acts overjoyed but you're thinking to yourself, "this person shouldn't be adding to the gene pool." None of it.

I've loved quarantine. I can watch Family Guy episodes I haven't seen and sit around in my underwear rather than messing with my hair for 30 minutes and it still not looking good. I can roll out of bed five minutes before I start working, so I get an hour of sleep back daily. I get hungry, I eat, and it doesn't cost me vending machine prices. I get tired, I clock out and take a nap with zero judgement. I have zero distractions. It's awesome.

I don't have to try to block out inane conversations with headphones while I'm really trying to concentrate, or worry about someone popping around the corner to my cube to see me killing time during slow times.

I wanna listen to cheesy 80's Go-Gos music or bass covers of pop songs or day baseball or a FiveThirtyEight politics podcast or something less work-appropriate like Dr. Dre without earwax-inducing earbuds? Can do.

I don't have to try to explain to the people around me how someone can have tastes that differing from day to day and feel like there's no way they can relate to me, like, ever - not that they do, anyway, because very few people understand my work? Good.

I do love my wife, and we get along great, although she's an introvert, too, so we spend a lot of our evenings doing our own thing - she sews, I do computer stuff. We've both loved quarantine.

Quarantine life FTW. I'm surprised more of you don't like it more.
 
2020-09-26 2:38:57 AM  

Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.


Not sure Russian and Arabian gangsters would want the attention.

/You didn't think those 80% empty "luxury condos" were for actual people to live in, did you?
//The money laundering for rich criminals that the US conspicuously chooses to do nothing about
 
2020-09-26 2:41:08 AM  

the money is in the banana stand: It won't be a good thing. Companies now have such a massive surplus of labor they can dictate the terms. If before your candidate pool to recruit was relatively limited, companies were doing everything they could to attract and retain employees. This drove up salaries, caused competition of benefits, created nicer work environments, and companies to look at additional methods of incentivzing. Now you really are a faceless drone where you don't matter at all and can be replaced at the drop of the hat. I can have anyone anywhere in the world on the payroll and probably get 4 people for the cost of 1 person running 24 hour shifts considering the benefit of time zones.


Well, hold on now...there's going to be a bunch of half-bathed babies in the street crying.

Outsourcing has always been an option for companies and they have done it, but with varying degrees of success. If it were that easy and seamless, the Internet would have rapidly destroyed wages the faster it grew. It didn't really turn out that way.

Companies that want to survive over the long term are still going to want to have a certain talent pool in the country where they exist; although it's expensive, it's also an asset. It's hard to cultivate loyalty with gig workers. Companies that adopt fundamentally short-term thinking are also going to cease to exist in the long term. The problem solves itself.

Furthermore, when it comes to these types of industries, although the democratization kills wages somewhat, it also opens new opportunities. Lots more people can start their own thing and work independently. Small businesses can often fill niches that large companies might ignore due to economy of scale.
 
2020-09-26 2:44:13 AM  
gonna change the city name to New Dystopia
 
2020-09-26 2:45:19 AM  
OgreMagi:
Not exactly the same, but related. San Francisco paid hotels to take in the homeless during the pandemic lock-down.  The hotels had no other sources of income, so went for it.   Real bad idea.  From what I've been reading, some of the hotels have been trashed so badly that they will require major renovation when this mess clears up.  And they'll probably have to eject the people by force.

hmm curious where u been reading that? i live in sf and haven't really heard anything about this. got a link?
 
2020-09-26 2:46:16 AM  

OgreMagi: khatores: There will always be opportunities for US software workers, partly because there's differences in how people in different countries use software. Someone who has lived in the US for a long time and has experienced using things such as a car on American roads, using a smartphone while in Americanized situations, etc is probably better equipped to make software that is more intuitive for American uses cases.

Americans aren't the only market, though we are probably the largest piece of the market at the moment.  China will pass us up eventually.  They probably already have for some things.


Sure, but I'm just referring to the US in this case. I'm not concerned with who's the biggest market; rather, just how it applies to a specific nation in this specific situation. Others might follow the same pattern, but autocratic regimes that want tight control are going to introduce a whole new set of factors for software developers.
 
2020-09-26 2:46:57 AM  

Enigmamf: OgreMagi: On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.

The premise is 3 days of work-from-home, not full-time work-from-home, which pretty much negates everything you said.


It negates nothing.  Some businesses are going 100% work from home.  If enough do that, it will completely change the landscape.
 
2020-09-26 2:48:07 AM  

spesimen: OgreMagi:
Not exactly the same, but related. San Francisco paid hotels to take in the homeless during the pandemic lock-down.  The hotels had no other sources of income, so went for it.   Real bad idea.  From what I've been reading, some of the hotels have been trashed so badly that they will require major renovation when this mess clears up.  And they'll probably have to eject the people by force.

hmm curious where u been reading that? i live in sf and haven't really heard anything about this. got a link?


I read it a few of weeks ago in one of the Bay Area newspapers (online).  I forget which one, though.
 
2020-09-26 2:51:19 AM  

OgreMagi: Enigmamf: Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.

Quite the opposite: They're proponents of this, because working from home makes people care more about where they live, and makes them willing to spend more on their home. But working from home only 3 days a week means they're still tethered to the same job centers they are now.

Together, that means it would only feed the bubble.

On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.


Applicants will always have to compete based on education, local/regional experience and state certifications for entry and middle level positions at any company in America.
 
2020-09-26 2:52:52 AM  

AllCatsAreBeautiful: OgreMagi: Enigmamf: Boondock3806: People profiting from the dense urban real estate bubble are sure to fight this ferociously. And probably win.

Quite the opposite: They're proponents of this, because working from home makes people care more about where they live, and makes them willing to spend more on their home. But working from home only 3 days a week means they're still tethered to the same job centers they are now.

Together, that means it would only feed the bubble.

On the other hand, if you aren't needed in the office at all, it will completely change the real estate market AND the pay scale.  The extremely high salaries you can demand to work in Silicon Valley are gone when some guy in Idaho can do the same job and is willing to do it for less because the cost of living for him is much lower.
This could also drive businesses to outsource to other countries even more.  Why pay a coder $100,000+ here when you can get someone just as good for $25,000 in another country?  That's when you get a death spiral.  More companies follow suit to compete.  Unemployment goes up and your customer base dwindles because no one can afford what you have.As much as I enjoy not dealing with my extremely long morning commute, I'm afraid a major shift to permanent WFH is going to fark up our economy more so than cheap plastic junk from China sold at Walmart.

Applicants will always have to compete based on education, local/regional experience and state certifications for entry and middle level positions at any company in America.


No doubt.  And the interview process will be brutal for technical positions.
 
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