Amazon, the nation’s largest online e-commerce company, is bowing to political pressure and increasing its minimum wage to $15 for all full-time, part-time, temporary (including those hired by agencies), and seasonal employees across the U.S.—effective November 1. The new Amazon $15 minimum wage will benefit more than 250,000 Amazon employees, as well as over 100,000 seasonal employees who will be hired at Amazon sites across the country this holiday.
“We listened to our critics, thought hard about what we wanted to do, and decided we want to lead,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder and CEO. “We’re excited about this change and encourage our competitors and other large employers to join us.”
Bezos is the wealthiest man in the world based on his holdings of Amazon stock. According to Bloomberg, Bezos is worth $162 billion. Amazon is also the second most valuable company in the world with a market cap just under $1 trillion.
Amazon’s public policy team will also begin advocating for an increase in the federal minimum wage, currently $7.25 an hour.
“We will be working to gain Congressional support for an increase in the federal minimum wage. The current rate of $7.25 was set nearly a decade ago,” said Jay Carney, Senior Vice President of Amazon Global Corporate Affairs. “We intend to advocate for a minimum wage increase that will have a profound impact on the lives of tens of millions of people and families across this country.”
Employees of Amazon will continue to receive benefits, including:
- Comprehensive healthcare, including medical, dental, and vision coverage
- Company-paid life and disability insurance
- Up to 20 weeks of paid parental leave
- 401k matching
- Career Choice, which pre-pays 95% of associates’ tuition for courses in high-demand fields, whether those jobs are at Amazon or another company
- Career Skills, which trains hourly associates in critical job skills like resume writing, how to communicate effectively, and computer basics
With more than 575,000 employees worldwide, Amazon was named #1 on LinkedIn’s 2018 Top Companies list, ranks #1 on The Harris Poll’s Corporate Reputation survey, and #2 in Fortune’s World Most Admired Companies.