Oct 18 (Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O) announced on Monday it plans to use 150,000 seasonal employees in the United States throughout the holiday season, as the e-commerce giant plans for a shopping season are assumed to be defined by high demand and supply jumbles.
Last year, the e-commerce store announced 100,000 seasonal employments, after it had already increased staffing through the pandemic.
Amazon’s hiring strategy comes during a significant labor shortage and expanded union activities in the US that has led to businesses increasing salaries to attract employees during the all-important end-of-year shopping season.
Last month, Amazon raised its average starting pay in the US to more than $18 an hour.
The seasonal positions will add sign-on bonuses of up to $3,000 and an extra $3 per hour depending on shifts, and Florida, Illinois, Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, are among the states that will have the greatest number of seasonal employment, Amazon announced.
Department store chain Macy’s Inc (M.N) in September declared plans to use about 76,000 full- and part-time employees at its chains during the holiday period. Target Corp (TGT.N) said it intends to take on 100,000 seasonal employees
Amazon announced last month it had begun hiring for 20,000 seasonal jobs in the United Kingdom for the Christmas period.
The amount of seasonal hires is more than the 100,000 Amazon stated last year and rivals the number that competing Walmart Inc. said it would combine this year.
The enhancements build on Amazon’s policies, revealed in September, to expand its ranks of permanent workers by 125,000. The e-commerce business is also hiring 40,000 people for its tech and corporate team.
Retailers are working to secure large amounts of staff ahead of the celebrations at a time when workers are limited in many businesses. Companies from stores and restaurants to theme parks and producers are fighting for workers, in some instances offering pay increases, hiring bonuses, and other benefits.
During the pandemic, some parents have stayed out of the office to care for kids while they were home from academies and daycare. Other people have taken time off to re-evaluate their preferences. The employment force is tinier, by about 4.3 million employees, than it would be if workforce support returned to pre-pandemic levels.
Amazon had 950,000 U.S workers and 1.3 million permanent workers globally as of July.
After pay hikes rolled out earlier this year, Amazon employment has an average beginning wage of $18 an hour, the company announced. Seasonal employees are also qualified for sign-on bonuses and hourly increases on some shifts.
Amazon’s seasonal job vacancies are concentrated in 20 states, including New York, Texas, and Virginia. There are 23,000 vacancies in California, 6,200 in Arizona, and 4,500 in Illinois, Amazon announced.
Some of Amazon’s largest rivals have also laid out aggressive hiring strategies. Walmart announced last month it is striving to add 150,000 people to its U.S. labor force of about 1.6 million. Target Corp. wants to use 100,000 seasonal employees and about 30,000 warehouse workers.
Shippers, whose part in holiday shopping has sprung with the rise of e-commerce, are increasing, too. United Parcel Service Inc. and FedEx Corp. are preparing to bring on a linked 200,000 courier handlers and other employees.