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Square Enix to make work from home permanent as of December 1

Bullet Club

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Square Enix to make work from home permanent as of December 1

-Mostly home-based hybrid model to strike balance between flexibility and manageability-

Tokyo, Japan (November 25, 2020) - Square Enix CO., LTD. (headquarters: Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo; President and Representative Director Yosuke Matsuda; hereinafter the "Company") currently enables work from home and will officially offer a permanent work-from-home program to all executive officers and employees as of December 1, 2020.

Rather than utilizing work from home solely as a means of preventing infections during the current pandemic, the Company will establish it as a permanent and core program among the working styles it accommodates. In so doing, the Company hopes not only to create a flexible and diverse working environment, but also to further bolster productivity and help employees achieve the optimal work-life balance.

The additional options this program creates will also enable the Company to recruit more diverse human resources, as well as to establish an organization capable of adapting to unexpected developments such as disasters and changes in employment models. By adopting a new style of working for a new world, the Company will enable employees to unleash even greater creativity as it continues to provide its customers around the world with content and services that fulfill their expectations. In so doing, the Company will strive to further enhance its corporate value.

Work-from-home Program
Providing customers with unforgettable entertainment requires creativity and productivity. Moreover, the nature of the work involved demands consistent, robust security. As such, the Work-from-home Program will combine "home-based" and "office-based" models.

The Company will designate each employee as either "home based" (working an average of at least three days per week from home) or "office based" (working an average of at least three days per week from the office). In general, all eligible employees will be designated as "home based." Division heads will designate some positions or individual employees as "office based" as dictated by the nature of the work involved.

Status changes will be allowed on a monthly basis depending upon the intensity of an employee's duties. The Company expects approximately 80% of employees to be home based in December, the first month of the program's implementation.

Program nameWork-from-home Program
Eligible companies
(other than the Company,
Square Enix Co., Ltd.)
Square Enix Holdings Co., Ltd.
Luminous Productions Co., Ltd.
Start dateDecember 1, 2020

Reasons for program implementation

The Company had for some time been exploring options for enabling greater flexibility in working styles when the COVID-19 outbreak occurred. In response, the Company implemented a series of measures starting in February 2020 that included enabling work from home, staggered working hours, and online conferencing.

Following a sustained period with these measures in place, the Company conducted a survey in June that demonstrated that roughly 80% of employees had a positive view of work from home. The Company also carefully considered a wide range of opinions from businesses as diverse as games, publication, and music regarding the practicality of work from home. This program was finalized based on those considerations. By enabling the option of monthly status changes rather than establishing blanket rules regarding who works from home and who from the office, the Company has designed a program that should be highly satisfactory both to those performing duties and those managing them.

 

The Fartist

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Or they could just cancel it and pretend it never happened. They have the time jannies on their side after all.
 

Hostile_18

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Interesting. Either productivity from home is alot better than anticipated or the cost saving is substantial.

From the outside seems like a huge mistake, in terms of team synergy etc.
 
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TKOFromTokyo

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I hope they’ll be subsiding heating, internet and electricity bills for their workers.

How do those compare to commute, clothing, and potentially food expenses? It is cheaper for the employee to work from home in the western world, hence why Deutsche Bank suggested a 5% privilege tax for people who work from home.
 
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diffusionx

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This is why cities like New York and LA Will not be recovering any time soon, separate from the total and complete incompetence of the people running them. A lot of people are going to be leaving because they can do all their work from a place that is cheaper, quieter, cleaner, and with better schools.
 

dano1

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I think companies will be making a big mistake if they go this route! People need human interaction to stay sane! Anyone that was forced to work at home knows!!
 
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Ten_Fold

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I think a lot of tech jobs should try to utilize both in office and home. If you live somewhere with long commute time this could help soo much imo. I still prefer working in an office though.
 
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Square Enix is an example of how to take one of the best JRPG companies on the planet and completely destroy it. They were so interested in pleasing the damn investors they had to go 100% mainstream and try to appeal to the casual market all while copying a ton of elements from Western RPGs. It's hard to believe this is the same company that brought us Final Fantasy VI and Chrono Trigger. In my mind Falcom has surpassed them in every possible way when it comes to JRPGs. Besides my rant on how much I don't like them the work from home thing isn't surprising. There was an article i read recently saying that 76% of tech CEOs were considering making some form of work from home permanent.
 
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YukiOnna

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I personally cannot fathom working from home, but it's good to have the option available for the many that need it and during the current situation.
 

supernova8

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Square Enix to make work from home permanent as of December 1

-Mostly home-based hybrid model to strike balance between flexibility and manageability-

Tokyo, Japan (November 25, 2020) - Square Enix CO., LTD. (headquarters: Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo; President and Representative Director Yosuke Matsuda; hereinafter the "Company") currently enables work from home and will officially offer a permanent work-from-home program to all executive officers and employees as of December 1, 2020.

Rather than utilizing work from home solely as a means of preventing infections during the current pandemic, the Company will establish it as a permanent and core program among the working styles it accommodates. In so doing, the Company hopes not only to create a flexible and diverse working environment, but also to further bolster productivity and help employees achieve the optimal work-life balance.

The additional options this program creates will also enable the Company to recruit more diverse human resources, as well as to establish an organization capable of adapting to unexpected developments such as disasters and changes in employment models. By adopting a new style of working for a new world, the Company will enable employees to unleash even greater creativity as it continues to provide its customers around the world with content and services that fulfill their expectations. In so doing, the Company will strive to further enhance its corporate value.

Work-from-home Program
Providing customers with unforgettable entertainment requires creativity and productivity. Moreover, the nature of the work involved demands consistent, robust security. As such, the Work-from-home Program will combine "home-based" and "office-based" models.

The Company will designate each employee as either "home based" (working an average of at least three days per week from home) or "office based" (working an average of at least three days per week from the office). In general, all eligible employees will be designated as "home based." Division heads will designate some positions or individual employees as "office based" as dictated by the nature of the work involved.

Status changes will be allowed on a monthly basis depending upon the intensity of an employee's duties. The Company expects approximately 80% of employees to be home based in December, the first month of the program's implementation.

Program nameWork-from-home Program
Eligible companies
(other than the Company,
Square Enix Co., Ltd.)
Square Enix Holdings Co., Ltd.
Luminous Productions Co., Ltd.
Start dateDecember 1, 2020

Reasons for program implementation

The Company had for some time been exploring options for enabling greater flexibility in working styles when the COVID-19 outbreak occurred. In response, the Company implemented a series of measures starting in February 2020 that included enabling work from home, staggered working hours, and online conferencing.

Following a sustained period with these measures in place, the Company conducted a survey in June that demonstrated that roughly 80% of employees had a positive view of work from home. The Company also carefully considered a wide range of opinions from businesses as diverse as games, publication, and music regarding the practicality of work from home. This program was finalized based on those considerations. By enabling the option of monthly status changes rather than establishing blanket rules regarding who works from home and who from the office, the Company has designed a program that should be highly satisfactory both to those performing duties and those managing them.


Well I'm glad I don't work for Square Enix then. I fucking hate working from home. Give me somewhere else to work, and let me chill out in my own house without having to stare at my work.
 
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YukiOnna

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Someone should really update the title since it seems to just be an opt-in program rather than mandatory, lol.
 
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GymWolf

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I mean, they worked from office while doing ff15 and 7rerape, they can't possibly go lower than that by working at home (i hope)
 
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diffusionx

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Square Enix is an example of how to take one of the best JRPG companies on the planet and completely destroy it. They were so interested in pleasing the damn investors they had to go 100% mainstream and try to appeal to the casual market all while copying a ton of elements from Western RPGs. It's hard to believe this is the same company that brought us Final Fantasy VI and Chrono Trigger. In my mind Falcom has surpassed them in every possible way when it comes to JRPGs. Besides my rant on how much I don't like them the work from home thing isn't surprising. There was an article i read recently saying that 76% of tech CEOs were considering making some form of work from home permanent.
it's not the same company that made Final Fantasy VI and Chrono Trigger, obviously. And I don't mean in the sense that it was Squaresoft, not Square Enix.

The name in front of a building is irrelevant, what makes a company is who works inside.
 
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Ixion

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it's not the same company that made Final Fantasy VI and Chrono Trigger, obviously. And I don't mean in the sense that it was Squaresoft, not Square Enix.

The name in front of a building is irrelevant, what makes a company is who works inside.

Kitase was Director on Chrono Trigger and FF6, and he is still there as Producer, and then you have Nomura who handled some monster/character/field designs on Chrono/FF6 as well. But yeah that's about it from that era.
 
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TKOFromTokyo

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I’ll be honest, if you like the people you work with and collaborate a lot in your job, working in the office is so much better for productivity and morale. I say this as someone who once worked grueling hours with the best team I’ve ever had in my life. Now I work in a boring job with oddballs and prefer to work from home, but I’m coming into the office now to get face time with upper management to hopefully get a new role.
 
Dec 29, 2014
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it's not the same company that made Final Fantasy VI and Chrono Trigger, obviously. And I don't mean in the sense that it was Squaresoft, not Square Enix.

The name in front of a building is irrelevant, what makes a company is who works inside.

I agree with that and unfortunately that talent is gone.
 

sid2vicious

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Kitase was Director on Chrono Trigger and FF6, and he is still there as Producer, and then you have Nomura who handled some monster/character/field designs on Chrono/FF6 as well. But yeah that's about it from that era.

Thank you for educating the ignorant masses, for some reason the clueless keep overlooking this simple fact. Kitase was heavily involved with CT, FF6 and FF7 as a director and as producer for FF7R, meaning he was mostly in charge of everything people love back then is still there today. Nomura on the other hand was the character designer and artist and that still remains the case, he didn't even know his role as director for FF7R until it was announced.
 
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lock2k

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I’ll be honest, if you like the people you work with and collaborate a lot in your job, working in the office is so much better for productivity and morale. I say this as someone who once worked grueling hours with the best team I’ve ever had in my life. Now I work in a boring job with oddballs and prefer to work from home, but I’m coming into the office now to get face time with upper management to hopefully get a new role.

This is what worries me about WFH.

I was already invisible at the office and now even more. I kinda like working from home because I hate people :messenger_tears_of_joy: but I certainly won't progress.
 
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DonF

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Well I'm glad I don't work for Square Enix then. I fucking hate working from home. Give me somewhere else to work, and let me chill out in my own house without having to stare at my work.
With this pandemic I've noticed two kinds of people, those who love working at home and those that fucking despise it.
I understand both.
Luckily what Square is doing is optional. I would personally like to go to an office a couple of days a week. I feel like I can focus completely on a task and bounce ideas more with coworkers.
 
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Nitty_Grimes

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How do those compare to commute, clothing, and potentially food expenses? It is cheaper for the employee to work from home in the western world, hence why Deutsche Bank suggested a 5% privilege tax for people who work from home.

I’m working from home. I still wear clothes and eat food. I also need to still pay £60 for my travel pass because I don’t drive because I still have to go from A to B.

In the UK there is a tax relief but as I pay 20% tax, I get £1.20 A WEEK towards my gas and electricity bills. My dual fuel direct debit is around £180 a month. Now moving to colder and darker, more lights on, heating on for longer so it’s going to go to about £220 a month for the next few months.

If I was at work, heating and electricity wouldn’t be on for 15 / 18 hours a day. That’s all I’m saying. My £1.20 is going to go really far.
 
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Hugare

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From the workers point of view: amazing

But I cant imagine how companies would be able to make a AAA game from scratch while in home office. I just cant.

Finalize one? Ok. Almost everything is already settled. Fixing bugs and etc. Basically what happened to every game released in 2020.

But jesus, imagine making an Assasins Creed game, RDR 2, TLOU 2 from home.

We will see how that will work out for Square in a few years
 
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kuncol02

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From the workers point of view: amazing

But I cant imagine how companies would be able to make a AAA game from scratch while in home office. I just cant.

Finalize one? Ok. Almost everything is already settled. Fixing bugs and etc. Basically what happened to every game released in 2020.

But jesus, imagine making an Assasins Creed game, RDR 2, TLOU 2 from home.

We will see how that will work out for Square in a few years
Chmielarz was talking about that in last post on Astronauts blog.
 
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regawdless

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Curious how they manage their work processes and infrastructure. Oftentimes it's not that easy and straight forward.
 

supernova8

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With this pandemic I've noticed two kinds of people, those who love working at home and those that fucking despise it.
I understand both.
Luckily what Square is doing is optional. I would personally like to go to an office a couple of days a week. I feel like I can focus completely on a task and bounce ideas more with coworkers.

In general, all eligible employees will be designated as "home based." Division heads will designate some positions or individual employees as "office based" as dictated by the nature of the work involved.

It doesn't really sound optional to me. It sort of sounds like they will tacitly force almost everyone to be home-based and then only people who have to go to the office will be office-based. I suppose it makes sense if they have tried teleworking and it didn't hamper work too much. It could well be that they are planning to downsize their (likely, currently very large) rented office space in favor of a smaller office allocation in order to save on the rent and other associated costs.

Japanese companies in general are still in the habit of giving people permanent contracts whereby it's surprisingly difficult to fire people so personnel costs are sort of like a fixed cost and every company wants to lower their fixed costs as much as possible.