With the globe experiencing an increase in ecommerce as quarantines and bans on public gatherings continue to rise, Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) announced that it will add 100,000 new roles to support its delivery service and that it will begin to prioritize shipments from third-party sellers to the items most in need.
“We are seeing a significant increase in demand, which means our labor needs are unprecedented for this time of year,” stated the company’s blog, dayone.
Over the weekend the e-commerce giant notified customers that it was out of stock of some key items and that same-day service may not be available in some markets.
The changes are designed to bolster its distribution efforts of essential household staples and perishables that many grocery and retail establishments are struggling to keep in stock.
Earlier today, Amazon told third-party sellers that it was limiting the items it would accept at its fulfillment centers to household and medical supplies as well as “other high-demand products” until April 5.
The company said that it has temporarily suspended the shipment creation function for non-essential items, but that it will still accept all shipments created prior to today.
“We are seeing increased online shopping, and as a result some products such as household staples and medical supplies are out of stock. With this in mind, we are temporarily prioritizing household staples, medical supplies, and other high-demand products coming into our fulfillment centers so that we can more quickly receive, restock and deliver these products to customers.”
The company’s new job openings will be full- and part-time throughout Amazon’s fulfillment centers and delivery network across the U.S.
Amazon also plans to invest more than $350 million to increase hourly pay by $2 in the U.S., 2 GBP in the U.K. and 2 euros throughout the European Union. $1 equals 0.83 GBP and 0.91 euro.
The $2 per hour increase in the U.S. will run through April. The company’s current hourly rate in the U.S. is $15 or higher.
“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. 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,” according to the blog.