Leaked Amazon memo says the company may run out of available labor by 2024

Amazon is likely to run out of potential workers for its US warehouses by 2024, according to an internal memo that was leaked to Recode. The memo contained internal research from 2021 that predicted an impending labor crisis for the e-commerce giant that would hit some areas faster than others. For example, he estimated that Amazon would exhaust its labor supply in Phoenix, Arizona by the end of 2021 and in California’s Inland Empire by the end of 2022. He said calculated the pool of available workers using factors such as income levels and proximity to current or anticipated markets. Amazon facilities.

The report urged the company to take steps to fill the future labor gap, such as raising wages to retain its existing workforce and attract more new hires. He also suggested increasing warehouse automation. “If we continue business as usual, Amazon will exhaust the supply of labor available in the US network by 2024,” the report’s authors wrote.

In a statement to Engadget, an Amazon spokesperson said the leaked document is not an accurate assessment of his employment status. “There are many draft documents written on many topics in the business that are used to test hypotheses and examine different possible scenarios, but which are not then escalated or used to make decisions. He was one of them. This does not represent the actual situation, and we continue to hire well in Phoenix, the Inland Empire and across the country,” wrote Rena Lunak, director of global operations and field communications at Amazon.

Automation is something Amazon has already invested heavily in when it acquired Kiva Systems in 2012. But according to a Wired survey from last year, Amazon’s warehouse robots are not capable of handling advanced fulfillment tasks that can only be performed by a human worker.

Human workers were once an abundant resource for business. The tech giant is the second-largest private employer in the United States and the largest private employer in a number of US states and cities. The company announced plans to hire 125,000 workers last fall, roughly equivalent to the population of Savannah, Georgia. But new hires appear to be largely replacing workers who have been laid off or quit. Amazon’s turnover rate is approximately 150% per year, twice that of the retail and logistics industries as a whole, a New York Times investigation revealed last year.

As Recode note, Amazon’s attrition rate is even worse in Phoenix and the Inland Empire. It also has to compete with big-box stores like Walmart and Target, which now offer competitive salaries to those with warehouse experience. “We hear a lot of [Amazon] workers say, “I can just walk across the street to Target or Walmart,” said Sheheryar Kaoosji, co-executive director of the Inland Empire Warehouse Worker Resource Center. Recode.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you purchase something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Leave a Comment