Global pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly is planning for employees working from home to return to their Indianapolis offices this summer. Officials say this is another step towards businesses returning to what operations were before the pandemic.
With about 40 percent of adult Hoosiers reported vaccinated – nearly 32 percent of all Hoosiers – company officials believe it can start returning to pre-pandemic operations with some safety precautions and flexibility.
The company’s plan is to bring 25 percent of its 7,000 employees currently working remotely back to the office on June 1. Those in the first wave will be fully vaccinated. Face masks and social distancing will still be required.
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Eli Lilly President and CEO David Ricks said work locations will vary between different departments, but believes this is a needed step to getting back to normal.
“But I know, like most of you, we're looking forward to seeing downtown Indianapolis thrive again, as more people return to their offices or shops and restaurants,” said Ricks. “And the best way for all of us to expedite that process is for Hoosiers to get vaccinated as I and my family have done.”
Ricks said all other employees will be able to return to the office July 12.
Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett described the company as a vital anchor to the city and said the move is a promising signal for 2021.
“Their return will accompany an increased weekday economy for our city and especially for our downtown in the coming weeks and months,” Hogsett said. “I'm sure many other employers will be close behind.”
Lilly employs about 11,000 people at its downtown headquarters. Roughly 4,000 of those worked in-person the past year while the rest worked remotely.