Amazon will hire 100,000 employees to bolster its delivery operations and boost wages for workers as Americans lean on e-commerce platforms during the coronavirus outbreak, the company said on Monday.
The e-commerce giant said it will hire for part-time and full-time roles in its fulfillment centers and delivery network through the United States in order to meet a “surge in demand.” Additionally, Amazon is investing $350 million to fund near-term wage increases for its workers in the United States, Canada and Europe through April.
“Getting a priority item to your doorstep is vital as communities practice social-distancing, particularly for the elderly and others with underlying health issues,” said Dave Clark, Amazon’s senior vice president of operations. “We are seeing a significant increase in demand, which means our labor needs are unprecedented for this time of year.”
U.S. workers will receive an additional $2 per worked hour beyond the company’s $15 minimum wage, Amazon said. Employees in Canada and some European countries will receive similar increases through the end of April.
Amazon said it is adhering to recommended practices, such as social distancing, to protect public health during the outbreak. The company invited workers from industries most affected by the outbreak, such as restaurant workers, to apply.
“We also know many people have been economically impacted as jobs in areas like hospitality, restaurants, and travel are lost or furloughed as part of this crisis,” Clark added. “We want those people to know we welcome them on our teams until things return to normal and their past employer is able to bring them back.”
Officials in a growing number of city have forced bars, restaurants and other nonessential businesses to close in a bid to stem the spread of coronavirus. U.S. grocery store chains have struggled to keep shelves stocked as worried Americans seek supplies.
Many physical retailers, including Apple and Nike, have temporarily closed stores to protect employees. Amazon is the top U.S. e-commerce retailer by market share.