JEFFERSONVILLE, In. — New employees are starting daily at Amazon.
The company says since March they’ve hired tens of thousands of people impacted with job loss or on furlough across the nation.
“It’s a whole new world at Amazon,” said Erica Ward, a Learning Coordinator.
This summer will mark four years for Ward working at the facility just outside of Kentucky, in Jeffersonville, Indiana.
“We have made so many changes. We've made over 150 process changes just since March. Everything has changed,” Ward said.
These changes are as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
They include new safety measures and protocols to protect the health of employees.
There are numerous water hand washing stations, hand sanitizer stands, distribution of PPE, and strategically rearranging the cafeteria to create space between employees during breaks.
“We have social distancing and sanitation audits multiple times a day and if an associate is caught in violation, they’re coached on the spot,” Ward said
Part of her role includes training new hires.
“I’ve learned to explain something in 6 different ways until I see the lightbulb turn on,” Ward said. “I am proud of the fact that we’ve been able to offer so many seasonal positions to people that may not be able to work their careers right now or their permanent jobs.”
Since March, Amazon har hired 175,000 full- and part-time employees across the nation from industries such as hospitality, restaurant, and travel.
In the Kentucky region, they’ve hired almost 1,700 new employees.
“We have staggered start and end times and staggered break and lunchtimes now to reduce the number of people needing to be in the main parts of the building,” Ward said.
She says, upon each entry of the facility, thermal temperature checks have also become routine.
Amazon says they’ve increased pay by $2 for employees until May 30.