Amazon layoffs exceed earlier projections. The job cuts would represent over 5% of the company’s corporate workforce and continue over the coming weeks
Previously estimated at about 10,000, Amazon job reductions will be expanded to affect 18,000 of employees, mainly in its devices business, recruiting and retail operations.
An e-mail from the company’s chief executive, Andy Jassy, revealed Amazon’s plans to eliminate 18,000 corporate and technology jobs, as the previous corporate cost-cutting plans appeared not sufficient.
The first announced layoffs took place in late 2022 and were primarily focused on the company’s devices and books organizations. The retail giant also proposed “voluntary severance” to some employees to trim costs beyond the massive layoffs.
Further job cuts would predominantly affect human resources, Amazon Stores and PXT organizations. Impacted employees (or employee representative bodies) will be notified accordingly starting on January 18.
Major layoffs would represent roughly 5-6% of Amazon’s corporate workforce, and 1.2% of its overall count of 1.5 million employees as of September 2022. Before the pandemic started, the company had a much smaller workforce. In 2020, Amazon more than doubled the number of employees, as customers flocked to online services amid the pandemic restrictions.
As the situation normalized, Amazon’s growth declined to its slowest pace since 2001. Moreover, the global economic slowdown of 2022 clearly showed that Amazon’s logistics network and talent pool were over-expanded.
Therefore, Amazon initiated broad cost-cutting measures, shutting physical stores and business units such as Amazon Care. The company also announced a hiring freeze before deciding to let thousands of employees go.