In a bid to attract employees, Amazon has revved up its educational incentives. On Thursday, the US e-commerce giant announced paying 100% college tuition fees for its approximately 750,000 U.S. employees, who work on an hourly basis. This endeavor will demand an investment of $1.2 billion by 2025
Starting January 2022, the company will sponsor college tuition for Bachelor degree courses, fees and cost of textbooks of those employees, who are in the operations network -like those working in warehouses and distribution centers. To be eligible for this incentive, one has to complete 90 days of working in the organization. This benefit can be availed in hundreds of educational institutions across the country.
Previously, Amazon had offered paying up to 95% of tuition, fees and books through its Career Choice program for associates in service for at least a year. The new program will now cover high school diploma programs, GEDs and English as a second language programs. According to Amazon CFO, Brian Olsavsky, the labor market is extremely competitive and to counter this problem, Amazon is offering educational benefits like sign-on bonuses up to $3,000. Around 5,00,000 employees have joined Amazon in 2020.
The company will also add new education programs that will provide its employees opportunities to learn skills in data center maintenance and technology, IT, and user experience and research design.
Competitors, Walmart and Target are not too far behind. Walmart has announced paying full college tuition fees and book costs for Walmart and Sam’s Club associates. Target, too announced covering costs of undergraduate and associated degrees at selected institutes.