Amazon to take on 7,000 more UK staff
AMAZON plans to hire another 7,000 new workers in the UK this year in a move branded “a clear vote of confidence” in the country by Business Secretary Alok Sharma.
The US online retail giant said the new permanent roles would include engineering, HR and IT positions, as well as fulfilment roles at its new packing sites in Darlington, Durham and Sutton-in-Ashfield.
It said, this year, it had already filled 3,000 posts and expected to fill another 7,000 by the end of 2020.
This would take the total UK workforce of the retail giant to more than 40,000 staff.
Many of those who had taken on temporary posts during the Covid-19 pandemic would now be able to transition into more permanent positions, Amazon said.
It will also be creating more than 20,000 seasonal positions in the UK ahead of the busy Christmas period.
It follows a surge in demand for online deliveries as customers stay at home and away from high streets.
In July, Amazon revealed its profits had more than doubled to $5.2bn (£3.9bn) in the three months to the end of June.
Since the start of the year, Amazon has seen its share price increase by almost 90pc.
In the UK, Covid-19 has prompted a huge surge in online shopping, with recent figures showing the volume of internet purchases was more than 50pc higher in July than in February.
The expansion follows an announcement last month that the company would be growing its operations in the US, adding around 3,500 new corporate staff and expanding its physical offices in six cities.
News of the plans to invest further cash in the UK economy was welcomed by Mr Sharma.
He said: “While this has been a challenging time for many businesses, it is hugely encouraging to see Amazon creating 10,000 jobs in the UK this year.
“This is not only great news for those looking for a new job, but also a clear vote of confidence in the UK economy as we build back better from the pandemic.
“The Government remains deeply committed to supporting retailers of all sizes and we continue to work closely with the industry as we embark on the road to economic recovery.”
The US company is not alone in aggressively expanding its online delivery operations.
Last week, Tesco announced it would be creating 16,000 permanent jobs, many of them for staff who worked on a temporary basis during the pandemic as food pickers and drivers, with home grocery delivery demand remaining high.
Amazon, meanwhile, is now offering its own grocery delivery service, Amazon Fresh, as part of its Prime subscription packages, with free delivery.