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Amazon should treat workers better after the union vote

For years Jeff Bezos has been practicing a customer-focused religion on Amazon. Now, with a controversial union voting after the end of his term as chief executive, the richest man in the world says it is time to focus more on the company’s employees.

“I think we need to do a better job for the employees,” he said in a letter to shareholders. “Even though the voting results have been ignored and our direct relationship with the workers is strong, it is clear to me that we need a better idea of ​​how we can build the value of employees – a vision of their success.”

Bezos resigned as CEO later this year to become chairman of the executive council, and it was clear that the legacy was in his mind at the end of the investment for his current role.

The company he founded is the largest online retailer and cloud-computing company and is highly ranked in popular voting brands and trusted institutions. But Amazon found itself challenged by regulators, trade unions, and activists around the world last year, some of whom made the company reach its full potential through intense business tactics that left a trail of defeated competitors, unchanging partners, and burning workers.

In a letter, released Thursday, Bezos claims that Amazon’s success stems from its history of invention and added value to society. “Any business that doesn’t value the value of those it touches, even if it seems to be successful on the face of it, does not last long in this world,” he said. In the 2020 back-to-back envelope figure, he added company refunds to shareholders, employee pay, profits for small retailers in Amazon and saving time and money for cloud-based buyers and customers. Total: $ 301 billion.

Bezos also said the company has 200 million subscribers, up from 150 million in early 2020.

Addressing employees, Bezos says he wants to add two things to Amazon’s customer credit. “We will be the World’s Leading Employer and the World’s Safe Workplace,” he said.

Staff at the Bessemer warehouse, Alabama, have strongly rejected the proposal to join Retail, Wholesale, and the Department Store Union. Of the more than 3,000 votes, Amazon won 1,798 nos and the union with 738 yes. RWDSU has vowed to oppose the results, which were announced last week.

The result followed a seven-week hard-fought election that attracted national attention by longtime critics of Amazon workers’ policies, including Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. Much of that criticism focuses on long hours and working conditions in corporate fulfillment institutions. Amazon claims to employ hundreds of thousands of people and pay them more than double the minimum wage and provide health benefits.

In the letter, Bezos denied his company’s exposure as a sometimes brutal workplace for hourly workers. “If you read some of the news reports, you would think we don’t care about the staff,” he said. “In those reports, our employees are sometimes accused of being depressed souls and being treated like robots. That is not true. ”

Bezos said Amazon does not set unreasonable working conditions and that 94% of Amazon employees have already said they would recommend working there for a friend.

The union responded immediately to the letter.

Amazon’s reputation for campaigning has been devastating, with no results from the polls,” RWDSU President Stuart Appelbaum said in a statement. “We have started a global debate on how Amazon treats its employees. The adoption of Bezos today shows that what we said about working conditions is correct. But his acceptance will not change anything, workers need a union – not just another Amazon social media effort to control the damage. ”

After leaving the day-to-day management of the company, Bezos said he hopes to focus on innovation and innovation, including working with Amazon team teams for new employee plans. He highlighted a number of initiatives that have already been launched, including efforts to prevent recurrent stress injuries through ergonomic coaching and by adapting the company’s programming software to rotate employees through tasks using different muscle groups.

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