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    Deutsche Bank calls employees back to the office


    Real estate use “inefficient”
    Deutsche Bank calls employees back to the office

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    Germany's largest financial institution wants to see its employees primarily at their desks again in the future. A stricter home office regulation is aimed particularly at management staff. Is the era of mobile working at banks coming to an end?

    Germany's largest bank is tightening the attendance requirement for its employees. Bloomberg reports this, citing an internal letter. From June, Deutsche Bank executives will have to be in the office four days a week, all other employees three days. The generous rules from the Corona pandemic will then no longer apply. Until now, the majority of employees have been allowed to work from home three days a week, and members of the management team can freely decide where they work. A Deutsche Bank spokesperson confirmed the new regulation to the financial agency.

    In future, the combination of employees working from home on Friday and Monday will be expressly prohibited. A single day of working from home on one of the two days is permitted, however, a company spokeswoman told The new regulation is justified by the fact that the use of real estate is “inefficient” and that employees' attendance times must therefore be distributed “more evenly” throughout the week. The letter was signed by bank boss Christian Sewing and Rebecca Short, who as a member of the board is responsible for day-to-day business, costs and personnel.

    With the stricter requirement for more office presence, Deutsche Bank is following the lead of the large investment banks in the USA, which called their employees back to their desks months ago, in some cases completely and permanently. The US investment bank Goldman Sachs was the most consistent in saying goodbye to home offices. The 6,000 employees have been working in the office five days a week for around six months. Other Wall Street firms have also taken measures against working from home.

    Back to the office, or bonuses gone

    In September, for example, the American Citibank threatened its 12,500 employees in London with pay cuts if they did not show up at work in person at least three days a week. Citigroup's British branches were the first to inform employees that their attendance was being monitored. When they enter the offices, their employee ID cards are digitally recorded. JPMorgan has instructed management to come to the office every day.

    The fact that German banks have so far granted their employees more freedom is also due to a lack of staff. It is unclear how Deutsche Bank's new home office regulations fit in with bank boss Sewing's savings plans. According to statements made last year, office space in Frankfurt, among other places, is to be reduced by 40 percent by the end of this year. Sewing has set the goal of reducing spending by the equivalent of 1.7 billion euros in total over the next two years.

    The pandemic has turned working habits upside down, and not just at banks. In many companies, almost the entire workforce often moved to home offices within a very short period of time. Since the pandemic has subsided, they have been looking for the right presence strategy for the future.

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