$700 million Amazon training program. What do you plant?

Amazon training program

Amazon announced an investment of $700 million in the next four years to provide a massive training program focused on upskilling 100,000 employees.

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.

Beth Galetti, Senior Vice President of Human Resource

Labor Market Transformation

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the global recession of 2020, the lockdown has accelerated the labour market’s transformation. According to The Future of Jobs Report 2020, a survey based on the interrogation of 2 500 companies in 46 countries of the World Economic Forum, the main developments are as follows:

New ways of working, home office

With remote work, the work, as known by most co-workers and managers, has profoundly changed. How do you recruit and onboard new co-workers? How do you communicate and train? A whole set of new skills is needed to overcome challenges and face this new reality. For many, it is like a need to reprogram our minds.

Acceleration of the pace of technology adoption and automation.

Labor market study

Big data, cloud computing and e-commerce are still high on companies’ agendas. We also see an increasing interest in encryption, artificial Intelligence and non-humanoid robots.

Automation, in tandem with the recession, is significantly impacting the labour market. Even though the number of new jobs will exceed the number of jobs destroyed, in contrast to the years before, job creation is going slower compared to the job destruction acceleration.

Skills gaps: soft skills vs hard skills

When a new set of hard skills is needed for all supporting the digital transformation, soft skills are becoming a must for all. The top skills that employers see as becoming a must in the next couple of years include soft skills as:

The future of work is already a reality for a large majority of office workers. To address concerns about efficiency and co-workers’ well-being, employers expect to take concrete actions to recreate the spirit of community, to favorise connections and belonging among employees through digital tools, and to address the well-being challenges raised by the switch to remote work.

Following the profound mutation of the labour market, upskilling and reskilling co-workers have become more urgent than ever. 50% of all employees will need reskilling in the next five years. It is true for co-workers who will stay in their roles and those who most likely will lose their positions.

Training program: what did you plan for yourself and your co-workers?

We’re launching, scaling and investing in skills training programs that support employees across our corporate offices, tech hubs, fulfilment centres, retail stores and transportation networks. Small and large, the programs meet our employees where they are – providing opportunities for Amazonians to get trained, at their place of work

  • Finding new talents is an option, but it comes with a high human cost for the ones left aside. It can also damage the companies, not only in terms of images but also loss of history and knowledge, demotivation or the remaining workforce …
  • Another option is to help overcome these new challenges by developing an upskilling and training program. Allison Dulin Salisbury, in her article, clearly described the recent trends.

Reskilling Training Program

  • Objective: Help me retrain my workforce relevant
  • Main business ROI: Reduce redundancies, turnover, and hiring costs
  • Target audience: those who need to move into a new job and career. The purpose is not just to improve current skills or to get additional skills but to entirely acquire new ones.

Upskilling Training Program

  • Objective: Help me keep my workforce relevant
  • Main business ROI: Productivity and competitive advantage
  • Target audience: those who need additional training to stay relevant or to move forward in their current job.


  • Objective: Help me support an employee who should transition to another company
  • Main Business ROI: Brand image, given back to the community
  • Target audience: those who won’t be able to find a new role at their current companies.

Education as a benefit

  • Objective: Help me recruit and retain top talent
  • Main Business ROI: Brand, motivation and productivity
  • Target audience: those you see as the new company talent, high potentials, highly motivated.

Next Steps: how to make the right decisions

Communication during training program
  • How will you achieve this? By launching your own training program or applying for external support and expertise?
  • Will you privilege a more traditional approach as group learning or develop the offer on your internal learning portal?
  • How will you make sure that your colleagues will acquire these new skills in the long term? That the training program makes more that engaged you and your colleagues and was not limited to the boost training effect, which often falls off after a few days?

Not sure how to overcome the challenges described above and make the right decisions about what is best for you or to support your team to acquire or improve their soft skills? Check out the 4C program. Need methodologies to develop an effective training program, please read;

If any questions or comments, please reach out! David Gousset.

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