Amazon Plans for Holiday Shopping Surge

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Amazon is once again hiring in seasonal help in bulk.

Even as in-person retail shopping becomes a safer and more attractive prospect, odds are good that most of the shopping public will still be doing their holiday shopping this year online. Online holiday deals are already being outlined on several retailers, and this year’s Black Friday and December sales promise to be impressive. However, retailers are still facing a severe labor shortage as workers quit en masse in search of better pay and benefits, so in order to keep up with the demand for holiday shopping, they’ll need to offer some additional incentives.

Amazon has announced their plans to hire at least 150,000 additional seasonal workers for this year’s holiday shopping season, about a 50% increase from their seasonal staff last year. Specifically, they’ll be hiring additional workers at their warehouses for picking, scanning, and packing items, as well as loading them onto their Prime trucks. In order to entice seasonal workers they’ll be offering boosted pay; the seasonal workers will have an average starting pay of $18 an hour, plus sign-on bonuses up to $3,000. Seasonal workers could also receive an additional $3 per hour depending on the warehouse they apply to.

“It’s a very competitive labor market out there. And certainly, the biggest contributor to inflationary pressures that we’re seeing in the business,” Brian Olsavsky, Amazon’s chief financial officer, said back in July. “We’re spending a lot of money on signing and incentives.”

Meanwhile, the other heavy hitters of retail are bringing on their own additional workers, though with slightly different hiring priorities. Walmart is also looking to hire on 150,000 workers, though these workers would be brought on permanent and full-time. Target is opting for a hybrid approach, aiming for 100,000 seasonal workers and 30,000 permanent workers.

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