The mass adoption of remote work during the COVID-19 pandemic signals that the days of “office-centricity” are over, according to the president of Canadian e-commerce company Shopify Inc.  

Harley Finkelstein said businesses are shifting away from the idea of the office being the place where everything happens, as COVID-19 has normalized the concept of working from home for many companies.

“There still will be a place for offices, whether that’s for on-sites, or onboarding, or team-building, or white-boarding sessions,” he told BNN Bloomberg’s Jon Erlichman in an interview Thursday. “But in terms of the primary place to organize and to gather being the office, we don’t think that’s going to be the case in the long term.

“We think the days of office-centricity are over.”

The Ottawa-based technology company made news earlier this year when it announced its employees would be able to work from home even after COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.

“As of today, Shopify is a digital by default company,” CEO Tobi Lutke tweeted back in May.

Finkelstein said the company has benefitted from the switch to remote work, adding that it’s given Shopify “incredible optionality” when it comes to hiring.

“It means we can hire people from all over the world that didn't want to move to Canada or to Ottawa, Montreal, Waterloo or Toronto, and they will still come and help us lead the company,” he said.