retail news in context, analysis with attitude

From the Seattle Times:

"Amazon is more than doubling the maximum base salary it pays employees to $350,000 from $160,000 … Amazon also said it was increasing the compensation ranges of most jobs globally and is changing the timing of stock awards to align with promotions.

"Like many big employers, Amazon has struggled to hire and retain workers of late. The company has long relied on stock awards, betting it can entice workers to take positions even if the base pay is low. But the stock languished in 2021, gaining just 2.4% while the S&P 500 jumped 27%, and the strategy began to lose its appeal. Media reports indicate the turnover rate inside Amazon has reached crisis levels, and a record 50 vice presidents departed last year."

The New York Times cites an Amazon memo as saying that the moves were instigated by "a particularly competitive labor market."

KC's View:

This reflects, I think, an enormous challenge to a lot of companies, especially smaller ones - as big companies like Amazon (and Apple, Facebook, Google, etc…) drive up salaries, it is going to be very hard for companies with lesser resources to compete for those people.

I also have to imagine that these numbers are going to be a headline in all the materials that pro-union forces send out to Amazon's warehouse employees.  It may not be apples to apples, but the optics aren't great and some will argue that the way Amazon treats people in its distribution facilities is rotten to the core.