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Amazon investing nearly $1 billion in pay hike for warehouse and delivery workers

Amazon is increasing pay and career development benefits for frontline workers.

Average starting pay for Amazon frontline employees is going up $1 an hour.

Amazon is making an investment of close to $1 billion in the next year to increase the average starting pay of frontline workers in customer fulfillment and transportation from $18 per hour to more than $19 per hour. Starting in October 2022, these employees will earn between $16 and $26 per hour depending on their position and location in the U.S.

The company is also expanding its pay access program, Anytime Pay, to all employees across its U.S. operations, corporate and technology networks. Anytime Pay provides Amazon employees with access to up to 70% of their eligible earned pay—whenever they choose and without fees.

Previously, most Amazon employees received their regular pay once or twice monthly.

Career development expansion
In addition, Amazon will make new investments in its career development programs, building on its commitment to provide free college tuition to hourly employees. According to the company, this will bring its total investment in benefits offered to its employees to nearly $10 billion in 2022.

Building on a commitment to create career advancement opportunities for 300,000 employees through 2025, Amazon has formally added an additional development program, Amazon Intelligence Initiative. This career advancement program is designed to place employees in engineering roles within Amazon Web Services (AWS), working to operate AWS’s Dedicated Cloud regions.

Employees participate in a 12- to14-month development program to enhance their technical skills. These engineers then complete multiple on-the-job rotations with hands-on experience alongside top AWS engineers.

The Amazon Intelligence Initiative provides participants with full-time employment during this training, including pay and benefits. Once their time in the program is completed, employees are placed into the most appropriate roles.

These benefit additions come as Career Choice—Amazon's education benefit that enable employees to learn new career skills—marks its 10-year anniversary and now has more than 90,000 total employee participants.

Since March 2022, Career Choice has added more than 100 new education partners, bringing the current total to over 260, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).

[Read more: Amazon backs $1.2 billion tuition pledge with 140 college partnerships]

In January 2022, Career Choice expanded to include pre-funded college tuition leading to bachelor’s degrees, new industry certifications, courses to improve English-language proficiency, and high school completion programs. Since launching these enhancements, Amazon says more than 110 employees have graduated with their GEDs.

“Frontline employees across customer fulfillment and transportation will now earn, on average, more than $19 per hour in the U.S., and they also have access to a growing range of comprehensive benefits to support themselves and their families,” said John Felton, Amazon senior VP of worldwide operations. “Continuing to invest in pay, providing easy access to earned wages at any time during the month, and offering great benefits and career advancement opportunities are all part of our long-term efforts to be the best employer in the world.”

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