Amazon is racing to deliver packages faster, and it's is turning to its employees with a proposition: Quit your job and we'll help you start a business delivering Amazon packages. The offer, announced Monday, comes as Amazon seeks to speed up its shipping time from two days to one for its Prime members, per the AP. The company sees the new incentive as a way to get more packages delivered to shoppers' doorsteps faster. Amazon says it will cover up to $10,000 in startup costs for employees who are accepted into the program and leave their jobs; it will also pay them three months' worth of salary. The offer is open to most part-time and full-time Amazon employees, including warehouse workers who pack and ship orders. Whole Foods employees aren't eligible.
The company declined to say how many employees it expects to take them up on the offer. The new incentive is part of a program Amazon in 2018 that lets anyone apply to launch an independent Amazon delivery business. It's part of the company's plan to control more of its deliveries on its own, rather than rely on UPS, the USPS, and others. Contractors that take part can lease blue vans with the Amazon smile logo stamped on the side. More than 200 Amazon delivery businesses have been created since last June. So how is Amazon planning on replacing the workers who defect? A hint may lie with Reuters, which quotes sources who say the company is heading toward automation by introducing machines that can box customer orders. They could replace more than 1,300 humans in the near term. (Come July, you won't have to mail Amazon returns.)