Amazon goes on a hiring spree

Online retailer is looking to fill more than 50,000 positions across the U.S.
7/27/2017

Amazon has some job openings. Lots of them.

The company on Wednesday said it's looking to fill more than 50,000 positions across the U.S. The announcement comes at a time when the labour market is growing tight with back-to-school and holiday shopping around the corner. Others will be competing for many of those potential hires.

Amazon will open the doors to job seekers on Aug. 2 at 10 shipping sites. The majority of jobs will be full-time. More than 10,000 part-time jobs will also be available at sorting centres, along with some supporting and managerial positions.

Amazon said in January it wanted to hire 100,000 full-time workers over the next 18 months. Since that time it's steadily announced jobs, including plans to add 900 workers in Boston and 1,600 in Michigan.

While the nation's unemployment rate is 4.4%, near a 16-year low, the average hourly pay rose just 2.5% in the past year. The last time unemployment was this low, wages were rising at roughly a 4% rate.

Wages hikes have been slow in coming, however, something that is being watch closely by U.S. monetary policy makers.

Amazon said its jobs offer "highly-competitive" pay, along with health insurance, disability insurance, retirement savings plans and company stock. Other benefits include up to 20 weeks of paid leave and programs such as Ramp Back, which give new mothers more control over the pace at which they return to work.

Amazon's growth has been phenomenal, with sales almost doubling in a three-year span, and now it is seeking to grow outside of its core. It recently announced a $13.7 billion deal to buy organic grocer Whole Foods. It added Sears' Kenmore products to its website and it's rolling out its own ready-to-eat meal packages, competing with companies such as Blue Apron.

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