Amazon layoffs hit workers in robotics, grocery, healthcare and AWS units

Amazon layoffs hit workers in robotics, grocery, healthcare and AWS units

Amazon’s corporate headquarters sits virtually empty on March 10, 2020 in downtown Seattle, Washington. In response to the coronavirus outbreak, Amazon has recommended that all employees in its Seattle office work from home, leaving much of downtown nearly empty of people.

John Moore | Getty Images

from Amazon More than 18,000 job cuts announced this month are being felt across the company’s sprawling operations, from physical retail technology and grocery stores to robotics and drone delivery, and even in cloud computing.

That’s according to a spreadsheet created after an employee announced the layoff, which encouraged those affected to submit their information for recruiters to use. The database, which has been widely circulated on LinkedIn, offers a window into companies that have suffered layoffs.

CEO Andy Jassy wrote in a blog post in early January that “multiple teams” were affected but the the cuts would primarily focus on Amazon’s global stores and human resources divisions. Beyond that, the company provided few details on where the downsizing would take place.

An Amazon spokesperson pointed CNBC to Jassy’s blog post about the layoffs.

Subsequent filings with state agencies offered insight into the geographic dispersion of layoffs. In Amazon’s home state of Washington, at least 2,300 employees lost their jobs, according to Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) documents. More than 500 were in California, including in the engineering and recruiting divisions, while about 300 were in New York, the documents show.

When Amazon reports fourth-quarter results on Thursday, executives will likely face questions about the workforce cuts and the expected financial impact. Revenue growth is expected to drop to 6% and remain in single digits through the latter part of 2023, analysts estimate, as Amazon contends with threats of a recession and lower consumer spending.

Amazon shares have lost half their value in 2022, the worst year for shareholders since the dot-com crash in 2000.

The latest wave of layoffs, which is set to be the biggest round of cuts in Amazon’s history, follows more than a decade of runaway growth and massive expansion of the fulfillment center network. of the company. Jassy blamed the need for the cuts on “labour shortages, supply chain challenges, inflation and excess productivity resulting from the growth of our fulfillment networks so significantly and transport during the pandemic”.

Here’s a breakdown of where the job cuts have taken place. CNBC has verified that staff members listed as Amazon employees work for the company.

Groceries and physical stores

Employees working on various retail technologies, including Amazon’s cashierless payment software called Just Walk Out, its palm-based payment service and Dash smart carts were among the layoffs. The unit was recently moved to Amazon’s cloud computing division after being housed under its retail organization.

There have been cuts to Fresh stores and online grocery delivery businesses for people employed as program managers, store designers, supply chain managers and software engineers.

Convenience stores and checkout-less supermarkets Amazon Go and Go Grocery have also been hit by layoffs.


Online shoe seller Zappos joined Amazon through an acquisition in 2009. Employees with titles such as program manager, software engineer and product buyer were among those laid off.

Amazon Robotics

Amazon Robotics is the unit of the company that focuses on automating aspects of its warehouse operations. The division grew out of Amazon’s acquisition of Kiva Systems, a maker of warehouse robots, for $775 million in 2012.

Hardware development engineers, mechatronics engineers, network engineers, applied science managers and technical product managers were among the job cuts.

Amazon Web Services

AWS pioneered the cloud infrastructure market, allowing enterprises to offload their servers and storage needs and pay per subscription and usage. The division now generates $80 billion in annual revenue and nearly all of the company’s profits.

Among those who lost their jobs were titles of software development engineer, senior program manager, account representative, cloud architect and quality assurance engineer.

AWS CEO Adam Selipsky said in an interview late last year at the company’s annual Reinvent Customer Conference that “we’re seeing some customers who are tightening their belts now.”

AWS CEO Adam Selipsky talks about the impact of the slowing economy and cloud consumption


Amazon’s operations division serves as a catch-all for many large units within the company. The organization oversees Amazon’s sprawling fulfillment and delivery business, among other things.

Employees involved in distribution center expansion, warehouse IT management, package pickup and return, delivery routing software, environmental health and safety, occupational health and safety and shipping and delivery service Amazon Logistics were among those involved in the cuts.


The company’s payments organization, which oversees units such as online payment processing service Amazon Pay, was also made redundant. Engineers, product managers and staff members working on the company’s Venmo checkout integration were among those laid off.

Health care

The cuts were for employees working on Amazon’s various healthcare offerings. Amazon Pharmacy, the online pharmacy it launched in 2020, saw program managers, risk compliance officers and billing officers step down as part of the job cuts. Additionally, employees working on digital health tools and the Halo health and fitness tracker lost their jobs.

Amazon has faced many challenges in its efforts to break into the healthcare market. The company said last year it was ending its telehealth service, and the two founders of online pharmacy PillPack, which Amazon acquired in 2018, announced their departure. Hundreds of employees were laid off in 2022 between a division called Amazon Care and Care Medical, an independent company that was contracted to work with Amazon.


Employees of Amazon’s third-party market unit were among those whose jobs were cut. The company oversees the millions of sellers who sell their wares on the website and app.

Staff members involved in third-party seller services, seller experience, seller financial technology, software development and online seller communities have been terminated. Amazon Launchpad, a unit that assists new sellers, has also seen heavy cuts.

Real estate

Employees involved in facility construction and planning, real estate transactions, disaster recovery and physical store development lost their jobs.


Retail units that have been impacted include supply chain optimization technology, pricing, vendor management, the Amazon Shopping app, and Amazon’s B2B marketplace. The cuts also included fashion stylists, who provided clothing recommendations to Amazon shoppers as part of its “try before you buy” service, formerly known as Prime Wardrobe.

First tune

Amazon layoffs are nothing more than a rollback from last year

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