The Uneasy Truth Behind Amazon’s Hiring Blitz And What Startups Are Doing To Fix It

by MR Magazine Staff

Today, Amazon announced that it will create 100,000 full-time, full-benefit jobs in the United States over the next 18 months. The jobs, Amazon says, will range from entry-level positions to software development roles. The announcement is designed to play nicely into President-elect Trump’s rhetoric about bringing more jobs back to our shores, but it’s important to remember that Amazon’s business model is premised on increasing automation wherever possible, which means replacing more and more humans with machines. In other words, while job creation is a reason to celebrate, it’s worth being skeptical about the amount of job-creating Amazon will do in the long run. Even as it has increased its staff from 56,200 in 2011 to 306,800 last year, it has also outfitted its warehouses with robots and conveyor belts that have reduced the human labor required to ship a package to one minute. Its drone program might soon make mail delivery people obsolete. And it is reducing the need for customer service agents with policies like proactive refunds. And more broadly, Amazon has played an important role in cutting jobs throughout the retail supply chain. It conditioned consumers to be able to find any product online and have it shipped to our home within days, which has had far-reaching ramifications across the marketplace. Read more at Fast Company.