Amazon plans to eliminate thousands of white-collar workers as layoffs sweep across the tech industry.
Sources told The New York Times almost 10,000 corporate and technology employees are likely to lose their jobs, which would be the most significant layoffs in the company’s history.
The cuts will focus on Amazon’s devices division, which includes the voice assistant Alexa, its retail unit, and human resources.
It is understood the number of reductions is still flexible and will likely be carried out team by team instead of in one go as each business completes its plans.
However, if it remains around 10,000, it will represent around three percent of Amazon’s corporate workforce.
The reduction accounts for less than one percent of its worldwide payroll of more than 1.5 million people, most of whom are hourly workers.
Amazon had intended to cut back during the important holiday shopping season when the firm has traditionally prioritized stability.
This year, Amazon more than doubled the cash compensation cap for its tech staff, citing “a particularly competitive labor market.”
Evolving business models and a shaky economy have triggered layoffs across the tech industry.
For example, after purchasing Twitter this month, Elon Musk trimmed the company’s headcount in half.
Meta confirmed this week about a broad layoff that hit 11,000 people or around 13 percent of its staff.
Lyft, Stripe, Snap, and other tech companies have also fired employees in recent months.
Amazon representative Brad Glasser refused to comment.
As a result of the pandemic, Amazon had its most profitable era on record, with people flocking to online shopping and businesses rushing to its cloud computing services.
Amazon doubled its staff in two years and used its profits to fund expansion and innovation in search of the next big thing.
It has also shuttered or scaled back a number of projects in recent months, including Amazon Care, Scout, and Fabric.com.
From April to September, it cut its workforce by about 80,000 people, mostly downsizing its hourly workers through high attrition.
In September, Amazon halted hiring in several smaller teams.
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It stopped hiring for over 10,000 vacant positions in its main retail division in October.
It paused corporate hiring across the firm, including its cloud computing unit, two weeks ago for the next few months.
Amazon’s retail business has been challenged as a result of the pandemic’s rise in demand and fast expansion.
The firm has stated that it has scaled back its expansion ambitions and has informed investors that it sees consumer uncertainty.
Source: The New York Times