The American workforce is changing – there’s a greater need for technical skills in the workplace than ever before, and a huge opportunity for people with the right skills to move into better paying jobs. As a leading U.S. employer, we have an important role to play in providing Amazonians access to the education and training they need to grow their careers.
Amazon already leads the way in pay with a $15 minimum wage, and offers competitive benefits to our employees, like healthcare from day one and up to 20 weeks of parental leave. With this announcement, we add a third component to our efforts by ensuring that our employees can make meaningful career changes into more technical roles, whether at Amazon or elsewhere, through training and career support.
For us, creating these opportunities is just the beginning. While many of our employees want to build their careers here, for others it might be a stepping stone to different aspirations. We think it’s important to invest in our employees to help them gain new skills and create more professional options for themselves.
How will we accomplish this? Starting in 2019 and through 2025 we’re dedicating over $1.2 billion to provide 300,000 employees with access to free training programs, including college tuition for our front-line employees.
We’re launching, scaling and investing in skills training programs that support employees across our corporate offices, tech hubs, fulfillment centers, retail stores and transportation networks. Small and large, the programs meet our employees where they are – providing opportunities for Amazonians to get trained in well-paying, in high-demand areas like medicine, cloud computing, and machine learning.
We are just starting to scratch the surface of how best to upskill our employees and enable them to chart their own career paths. We will continue to pilot new upskilling programs and quickly scale them when existing initiatives are successful.