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Yelp closes three U.S. offices, says remote work is its future

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS / 2011
                                The logo of the online reviews website Yelp is shown in neon on a wall at the company’s Manhattan offices in New York. Yelp is closing some physical offices, saying employees were hardly using them since the company went remote. Yelp said it’s closing offices in New York, Washington and Chicago and downsizing in Phoenix.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS / 2011

    The logo of the online reviews website Yelp is shown in neon on a wall at the company’s Manhattan offices in New York. Yelp is closing some physical offices, saying employees were hardly using them since the company went remote. Yelp said it’s closing offices in New York, Washington and Chicago and downsizing in Phoenix.

Yelp is closing three of its U.S. offices after finding most of its employees prefer to work remotely.

In a blog post Thursday, Yelp Co-Founder and CEO Jeremy Stoppelman said the company will close its offices in New York, Washington and Chicago on July 29. The online review and reservation company also plans to downsize its office in Phoenix.

The offices the company is closing were its most “consistently underutilized,” with only about 2% of workspaces in use each week, Stoppelman said.

San Francisco-based Yelp announced a remote-first work model in February 2021. Stoppelman said Yelp has proven it can be successful with a remote workforce, noting that the company achieved record revenue of just over $1 billion in 2021.

“Yelp continues to experience the benefits of a remote workplace and it’s the clear path forward for us,” Steppelman wrote in the blog post.

Stoppelman said internal surveys show 86% of Yelp workers prefer to work remotely all or most of the time, while 87% said that working remotely makes them more effective. Since the company began reopening its offices about nine months ago, only 1% of the company’s global workforce is coming into an office every day.

Stoppelman said the remote-first policy has also helped with recruiting.

“Our workforce was previously concentrated in the areas where we have offices, and now we have employees spread across every state in the U.S. and four countries,” Stoppelman wrote.

Yelp, which has 4,400 employees, said offices in San Francisco, London, Toronto and other locations will remain open for now.

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