Given the ongoing economic headwinds and the company’s expensive belt tightening under CEO Andy Jassy, it’s no surprise that Amazon has implemented a corporate hiring freeze. Her senior vice president of People Experience and Technology at Amazon, Beth Galetti, confirmed the move in a memo to her staff published on Amazon’s own blog.
In the letter, Galletti said the company had already begun to suspend or slow hiring in various corporate sectors “in the last few weeks.” Since then, the move has been applied to “additional new hires” across corporate businesses “in the coming months.” The “corporate” warning here is likely intended to distinguish it from jobs like Amazon fulfillment centers across the US as the company ramps up for the holidays.
There are other potential exceptions, such as replacements for employees who have left existing roles. The executive added that the company plans to add “meaningful headcount” next year.
“We are facing an unusual macroeconomic environment and want to balance recruitment and investment with consideration of this economy,” writes Galetti. “This is not the first time in the past that we have faced uncertain and difficult economies. There have been years when we have significantly expanded our headcount, but there have also been years when we have tightened our belts and been more rational in the number of people we have added. With fewer people available at this time, each team will have the opportunity to be more productive and prioritize what matters most to our customers and business.”
Jassy, the head of AWS, who took over the CEO role from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos in July 2021, was looking for meaningful ways to reduce costs across the company. He reportedly said at an all-hands meeting earlier this month: There are also years when they are really wide-spread. We’ve had years where they’ve checked in and been working on profitability, tightening their belts a bit. Also, if you have multiple businesses like Amazon, some businesses may grow at the same time while others check in. “
Of course, Amazon isn’t the only one making such decisions. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced plans for cost-cutting measures and a hiring freeze at the social media giant in September.