- In an effort to reduce worker injuries, Amazon is rolling out WorkingWell across its operations with the aim of a 50% reduction in "recordable incident rates" in its operations by 2025.
- The initiative, which includes mental and physical exercises meant to boost wellness and energy, is part of a $300 million company investment in safety projects in 2021.
- According to the company, earlier pilots of the program reduced musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) such as sprains by 32% over a year. MSD's account for 40% of Amazon's work-related injuries.
Just over a month ago, in his final letter to shareholders as chief executive of the company he founded, Amazon's Jeff Bezos said that his company needed "a better vision for our employees' success."
Bezos and Amazon say that the e-commerce giant wants to become the "earth's safest place to work." That is a lofty goal indeed, but lofty goals have always been part of Amazon's DNA and self-narrative. And the company is pursuing the goal in Amazon fashion, with testing and data.
Amazon first piloted parts of the program in 2019 and eventually expanded it to 859,000 employees across 350 of the company's facilities in North America and Europe. Now the company plans to roll out WorkingWell to its entire operations network in the U.S.
The program includes training, conditioning, wellness services and technology, all aimed at boosting all-around safety at Amazon's facilities. Among features so far are wellness centers staffed by athletic trainers and medical personnel; healthy on-site eating options; short safety videos around topics such as gripping, handling and nutrition; dedicated spaces for stretching and muscle recovery; mindfulness kiosks; interactive technology meant to promote wellness and safety habits.
Amazon's WorkingWell announcement comes just weeks after a highly public and hard-fought battle over a bid to unionize Amazon's warehouse workers at a Bessemer, Alabama facility. Union officials accused Amazon of spreading misinformation and intimidation, which the company denies. The union vote ultimately failed.