What you need to know
- Apple Store employees are being asked to work from home.
- Those who accept will provide sales and tech support to customers remotely.
- Employees will be compensated and provided with an iMac and training.
Apple's retail stores have now been closed for weeks, and all of its retail employees have been at home waiting for the stores to eventually reopen. A new report from Bloomberg suggests that Apple may have an idea of how to occupy Apple Store employees' time while they are at home.
According to the report, Apple is now asking retail employees who are currently at home to take on sales and tech support roles for the remainder of their time away from the store. As Apple is rumored to be close to launching its new iPhone 9, it makes sense that it would take advantage of the expertise that exists in its store employees to assist with the launch.
The program is apparently optional, but those that chose to join will be provided with a 27" iMac and virtual training that is being held over the next couple of weeks. The company has been piloting the program since stores closed but is now opening it up to more employees. Apple's Vice President of Retail and People Deirdre O'Brien said the pilot program "has been going great."
Employees who participate will also reportedly receive additional compensation for their efforts but not be asked to work outside of the schedule they would normally work in the store. Any employee who chooses not to participate will still be paid their normal salary and benefits.
This is Apple's latest move to adopt the company to the new work from home lifestyle. A large number of its corporate employees have been working from home for weeks now, but this latest move will bring its retail employees into the mix as well.
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Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.