Chattanooga’s major office employers decide remote work is here to stay

BlueCross to keep 88% of staff working from home

Staff photo by Jenna Walker/Chattanooga Times Free Press - Mar 3, 2011 -- In the center of the BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee campus in Chattanooga, Tenn., is a courtyard for students and employees to enjoy. The glass windows allow sunlight to filter into the building, which saves on heating costs.

Chattanooga's biggest private employer has decided to keep most of its staff working from home as so-called "office work" has evolved during the pandemic into "homework" for thousands of white-collar workers in Chattanooga.

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, which built a $299 million corporate campus atop Cameron Hill in 2009 to house a majority of its 6,300 employees, told its workers Friday it plans to keep most of its staff working remotely and won't require them to come to the office.

"Our people have made it clear that they value the ability to work from home and they want to keep it," BlueCross Vice President Dalya Qualls said in a statement Friday. "As a response to employee feedback, remote work is here to stay."

Only a few hundred employees are now regularly using their offices at the BlueCross headquarters in downtown Chattanooga and 88% of BlueCross's staff now works remotely, Qualls said.