Amazon suspends hiring of corporate employees

Amazon CEO Andy Jassy speaking at the GeekWire Summit in Seattle on October 5, 2021.

David Ryder | Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Amazon The company made the announcement Thursday in a memo to employees.

The company announced last month that it would freeze hiring for corporate positions in its retail operations, but the latest update has affected other businesses.

Amazon’s head of human resources, Beth Garetti, said in a memo that the company had moved to further limit new hiring amid a deteriorating economic outlook and after hiring rapidly in recent years.

“We plan to maintain this moratorium over the next few months as we continue to monitor economic and business conditions and make any adjustments that we believe make sense,” Galetti said.

Amazon is backfilling the role of replenishing retiring employees for new opportunities, and will continue to “hire in phases” in some target areas, she added.

Retail giants continued to hire heavily during the Covid-19 pandemic to keep up with the pandemic-induced surge in online shopping. Since then, headcount growth has slowed as consumers have returned to brick-and-mortar stores, and retail has not grown as rapidly as it has in recent years.

CEO Andy Jassy has also aggressively cut costs across the company in recent months amid concerns about a recession, rising inflation and soaring interest rates. Amazon has shrunk its warehouse space, canceled several experimental projects and closed its telemedicine service.

In the third quarter, Amazon’s workforce grew just 5% year-over-year to 1.54 million employees worldwide. That comes after the company’s workforce shrank in the second quarter for the first time in years.

Amazon says it has about 75,000 employees in the Seattle area, including its offices. We also have significant corporate facilities in Virginia, Tennessee, Silicon Valley and New York.

Here are the full notes:

With the economy in an uncertain place and given the number of people it has hired over the past few years, Andy and the S team have decided to suspend hiring of new employees for the company this week. Over the past few weeks, we’ve already done this for several businesses and added others to this approach. We plan to maintain this moratorium over the next few months and will continue to monitor what we see in the economy and business and adjust as we see fit. , employ backfills to replace employees who move to new opportunities. There are also some locations that are eligible to continue hiring people in stages.

We are facing an extraordinary macroeconomic environment and want to balance hiring and investment with caring for this economy. This is not the first time we have faced uncertain and difficult economies in the past. Some years we’ve expanded our headcount significantly, but other years we’ve tightened our belts and more streamlined the number of people we’ve added. You should have the opportunity to prioritize things more and be more productive.

We plan to hire a significant number of people in 2023 and continue to look forward to significant investments in our larger businesses and new initiatives such as Prime Video, Alexa, Grocery, Kuiper, Zoox and Healthcare.

If you have any questions about how the moratorium on phased hiring in the coming months will affect your team, please speak to your manager in the coming days.


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