American Amazon is ready to begin a new round of large-scale job cuts as part of the previously announced layoffs of 18,000 employees.
The largest layoff in the company’s history is due to a slowdown in online sales growth and a possible recession.
The layoffs began last year and initially fell hardest on Amazon’s device and services group, which is developing the Alexa digital assistant and Echo smart speakers.
The latest round, due to start on Wednesday, will mainly focus on the retail and human resources department.
It is noted that while the cuts affect only about 1% of the total workforce, which includes hundreds of thousands of hourly warehouses and delivery personnel, they represent about 6% of Amazon’s 350,000 corporate employees worldwide.
“Amazon has experienced an uncertain and challenging economy in the past and we will continue to do so. These changes will help us realize our long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure,” CEO Andy Jassi said earlier this month in a memo to employees. The world’s largest online retailer spent most of last year’s cuts, adjusting to a sharp slowdown in e-commerce growth as shoppers revert to pre-pandemic habits.
Amazon has delayed opening warehouses and suspended hiring for the retail group. The company extended the recruitment freeze to the company’s corporate workforce and then began laying off workers.
In his memo, Jassi indicated that the company would provide severance pay, temporary medical benefits and employment to affected workers.