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Amazon invests nearly $1B to expand pay, benefits for front-line employees

​​​​​​​Pay increases for front-line employees begin in October, with average starting pay now more than $19 per hour.

Amazon is raising wages for its U.S. front-line employees. The company has made a nearly $1 billion investment over the next year, along with a new benefit that enables employees to collect their pay at any point during the month.

Average starting pay for front-line employees in customer fulfillment and transportation is increasing from $18 per hour to more than $19 per hour, with employees earning between $16 and $26 per hour depending on their position and location in the U.S. Amazon also announced additional investments in career development programs, building on its commitment to provide free college tuition to hourly employees. This brings the company’s total investment in benefits offered to its team to nearly $10 billion this year alone.

“Front-line employees across customer fulfillment and transportation will now earn, on average, more than $19 per hour in the United States, and they also have access to a growing range of comprehensive benefits to support themselves and their families,” said John Felton, Amazon’s senior vice president 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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To prioritize flexibility and make access to pay as easy, instant and convenient as possible for employees, Amazon expanded its pay access program, Anytime Pay, to all employees across its U.S. operations, corporate and technology networks. Anytime Pay provides Amazon employees access to up to 70% of their eligible earned pay — whenever they choose and without fees — with the goal of putting employees in control of their pay schedule. Previously, most Amazon employees received their regular pay once or twice monthly. Anytime Pay now offers employees access to their earned pay as often as they like.

“I used Anytime Pay recently to pay for an unexpected vet bill when my cat got sick. It’s easy to use, super quick and gives me extra flexibility and freedom with my finances," said Brittany Midgley, an employee at Amazon’s fulfillment center in Bondurant, Iowa. “Programs like these demonstrate that we're valued and that Amazon is committed to our success.”

Building on the 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 Service, working to operate AWS’s Dedicated Cloud regions. Employees participate in a 12- to 14-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, with great pay and benefits. Once their time in the program is completed, employees are placed into the most appropriate roles, the company said. 

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These benefit additions come as Career Choice — Amazon's education benefit that empowers employees to learn new skills for career success — celebrates its 10-year anniversary and now has more than 90,000 total employee participants. Since March, Career Choice has added more than 100 new education partners, bringing the current total to over 260, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities. 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, more than 110 employees have graduated with their GEDs.

“I’m proud to be the first person to get a degree in my family thanks to the Career Choice program,” said Julio Martinez, an employee at Amazon’s data center in Hermiston, Ore. “Career Choice allowed me to attend school without the additional stress of the cost because Amazon covered everything.”

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