Amazon Seeks to Hire 100,000 to Meet Increase in Orders Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

March 16, 2020 Updated: March 16, 2020
FONT BFONT SText size

Amazon said on Monday that it will need 100,000 more people in new full and part-time positions across the United States to meet a surge in orders amid the new coronavirus outbreak, which has seen more people shop online.

“We are seeing a significant increase in demand, which means our labor needs are unprecedented for this time of year,” Dave Clark, who oversees Amazon’s warehouse and delivery network, wrote in a blog post.

The new job openings positions include delivery drivers and warehouse workers, who pack and ship orders to shoppers, Amazon said.

It also said it will increase pay to employees by $2 per hour through April. Employees in the United Kingdom and many other EU countries will also receive a raise.

This will apply to workers at Amazon’s warehouses, delivery centers, and Whole Foods grocery stores, all of whom currently make at least $15 an hour.

“This commitment to increased pay through the end of April represents an investment of over $350 million increased compensation for hourly employees across the U.S., Europe, and Canada,” the company announced.

Amazon over the weekend said that deliveries might be delayed amid the coronavirus pandemic, and warned shoppers that it could take longer than the usual two days to get packages. It also said it was sold out of many household cleaning supplies and is working to get more in stock.

The Seattle-based company last week said that its hourly workers could take as much time off as they wanted in March but they would only be paid if they had earned time off.

Amazon also said that it would pay hourly workers for up to two weeks if they became ill with the virus or needed to be quarantined.

Amazon is the second-largest U.S.-based employer behind Walmart, with nearly 800,000 workers worldwide.

Walmart announced on Saturday that it will change its hours in response to the coronavirus pandemic, with the measure affecting all stores across the United States.

“The move will allow its employees to restock shelves as well as clean and sanitize stores,” Walmart said in a Twitter post.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Follow Mimi on Twitter: @MimiNguyenLy