Online retail giant Amazon is to offer one-off payments of up to £3,000 in order to attract staff in UK regions where there is high demand for labour.

The retailer will be hiring for approximately 20,000 roles in the UK during this festive season.

Concerns about worker shortages have already led other companies to raise concerns in advance of Christmas.

Amazon began offering a £1,000 signing-on bonus to recruit permanent staff in some regions in August.

As first reported in the Guardian, the company’s latest recruitment drive has included a £3,000 bonus for full-time workers at sites such as its Exeter warehouse, while in Peterborough, new temporary and permanent workers are offered a sign-up bonus of £1,500.

Pay for the temporary roles starts at a minimum of £10 per hour, rising to £11.10 in some parts of the UK.

  • How can we make sure that there is enough?
  • Amazon pays £492m in UK tax as sales hit £20.6bn
  • Shops warn about Christmas delays and shortages

Delivery delays and waste have been a result of a shortage in workers across dozens of industries over the last few months. Next Fashion and Iceland supermarket are two examples of companies warning about possible disruptions before Christmas.

There have been many overseas workers who fled Britain during and after the pandemic. Some workers were also prevented from finding work by the furlough plan, which runs until this month.

Andrew Goodacre, the British Independent Retailers Association’s chief executive, stated that he is “concerned about the level of wage inflation as well as bonus payments being initiated by large corporations such Amazon”.

Goodacre said that seasonal workers were “proving difficult” during the “most critical time of the year for many small businesses.

Amazon’s actions will only make it more difficult for small businesses that simply can not afford these wages.

Mick Rix was the national representative of GMB trade union. He stated that Amazon had been a pandemic-profiteer and rake in huge sums during the Covid crises.

It is right for them to listen and guarantee that Amazon employees get a share of the enormous profits made by the company.

In September, the firm announced it had paid £492m in direct taxation last year as its sales rose 50% to £20.63bn amid a Covid-driven surge in demand.

Amazon was accused of having poor work conditions in both the UK (where it is second-largest employer) and the US (where it has been accused).

The Unite union opened a hotline to help Amazon workers in Britain, which was launched March. They also requested that Amazon give British workers greater rights to unionize and a bigger share of profits.


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