Home / News / World /  Amazon begins mass layoffs, says ‘some roles no longer required’

Amazon.com has begun the process of cutting jobs across the company this week, news agency ANI has reported on Wednesday citing US media.

The company has laid off some employees in its devices group including in its retail division and human resources, a person familiar told Reuters. 

On Tuesday, as per AP report, the company had notified regional authorities in California that it would lay off about 260 workers at various facilities that employ data scientists, software engineers and other corporate workers. Those job cuts would be effective beginning on January 17.

Earlier on 16 November, Dave Limp, Senior Vice President of Devices & Services wrote in a blog post, “After a deep set of reviews, we recently decided to consolidate some teams and programs. One of the consequences of these decisions is that some roles will no longer be required." 

Also Read: Amazon India likely to layoff few hundred employees: Report

"It pains me to have to deliver this news as we know we will lose talented Amazonians from the Devices & Services org as a result," he added. 

He said those laid off in the process were notified on Tuesday and the company will work with them to "provide support", including assistance in finding new roles. If an employee cannot find a new role within the company, Limp said Amazon will provide a severance payment, external job placement support and what he called transitional benefits.

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The New York Times this week reported that Amazon was planning to lay off approximately 10,000 employees in corporate and technology roles. The report said the cuts would be the largest in the company's history.

The figure makes up roughly 3 percent of its corporate workforce, and the total number of layoffs "remains fluid" and could change.

Also Read: Amazon layoff: Indians in US, Canada living on work visa in troubled waters

Amazon's spokesperson Kelly Nantel said as part of the annual operating planning review process, certain roles are no longer necessary.

"As part of our annual operating planning review process, we always look at each of our businesses and what we believe we should change. As we've gone through this, given the current macro-economic environment, some teams are making adjustments, which in some cases means certain roles are no longer necessary. We don't take these decisions lightly, and we are working to support any employees who may be affected," Nantel was quoted as saying in a report by TechCrunch on Wednesday.

Also Read: Amazon boss Jeff Bezos to give away most of $124 billion wealth to charity

The online retail giant, like other tech and social media giants, saw sizable profits during the COVID-19 pandemic, as homebound shoppers purchased more items online. But revenue growth slowed as the worst of the pandemic eased and consumers relied less on ecommerce.

The Seattle-based company reported two consecutive losses this year, driven mainly by write-downs of the value of its stock investment in electric vehicle start-up Rivian Automotive. The company returned to profitability during the third quarter, but investors were gloomy about its weaker-than-expected revenue and lackluster projections for the current quarter, which is typically good for retailers due to the holiday shopping season.

Tech giants have cut jobs in the past few weeks. Among them, Facebook parent Meta said last week it would lay off 11,000 people, about 13 per cent of its workforce. And Elon Musk, the new Twitter CEO, slashed the company's workforce in half this month.

(With inputs from agencies)

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