Amazon, seeking more skilled workers, will do the training

Inside an Amazon fulfillment center in Dupont Wash

Inside an Amazon fulfillment center in Dupont Wash

Amazon on Thursday pledged to spend $700 million over the next few years to retrain 100,000 of its USA workers.

"Through our continued investment in local communities in more than 40 states across the country, we have created tens of thousands of jobs in the U.S.in the past year alone", said Beth Galetti, senior VP, HR.

"The challenge is not just adapting to new technologies, but adapting to the dynamism of the economy, which will only accelerate", said Jason Tyszko, vice president at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, in the Amazon statement.

The company's Upskilling 2025 program is one of the biggest retraining programs announced in the US.

Career Choice, a tuition program for fulfillment center workers, will be expanded, as will Amazon Apprenticeship, a classroom training and on-the-job apprenticeship at Amazon. "Amazon is demonstrating the new role employers must play to counter that challenge, fostering a new relationship with workers where maintaining and growing their skills is an imperative for business success". After reviewing the company's jobs and hiring data from the USA workforce, Amazon said that fast-growing, highly skilled jobs over the last five years at the company include data-mapping specialist, data scientist, solutions architect and business analyst.

"This is an excellent move for Amazon, which has recently come under fire by politicians and activists about substandard working conditions and its role in the underemployment of thousands", said Stewart.

Amazon is calling the plan "Upskilling 2025".

AWS Training and Certification for Amazon Web Services skills technical field. We think it's important to invest in our employees, and to help them gain new skills and create more professional options for themselves.

The big picture: Amazon is making a financial commitment to prepare its USA employees for a near future where everything in their workflow will be deeply disrupted by automation. "By offering these benefits to the portion of their workforce which is least upwardly mobile, these workers will be more effective and productive, both in and outside of Amazon".

Amazon cited the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which said jobs that appear to be continuously growing are in "more skilled areas" such as nurse practitioners, medical assistants and software developers. The company did implement a $15-an-hour minimum wage previous year, yet labor grievances have endured.

Amazon will provide technical training to about one-third of its US workforce, both to address the need for more skilled workers and to better compete against rivals.

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