A reception at the offices of Amazon in downtown Seattle, Washington.
Glen Chapman | AFP | Getty Images
On Tuesday, Amazon employees continued to speak out about CEO Andy Jassy’s recently announced back-to-office mandate, including spamming an internal website with messages expressing their opposition to the new policy.
A group of techs created a Slack channel and wrote an internal petition pushing back the mandate, which requires them to be back in the office at least three days a week from May 1. The petition urges Jassy and Amazon’s management team, known as the S-Team, to drop the mandate, just days after it was announced.
The group has since grown to 16,000 members and around 5,000 employees signed the petition on Tuesday evening.
Employee dissatisfaction with the mandate spilled onto the online retailer’s internal newsfeed for employees, called Inside Amazon, where workers repeatedly commented on a recording of the recent show of hands from Jassy.
“By arbitrarily forcing a return to work without providing supporting data and despite clear evidence that this is a bad decision for employees, Amazon has failed in its role as the best employer in the world,” according to screenshots viewed by CNBC. “I believe this decision will be detrimental to our business and is contrary to how we make decisions at Amazon.”
Employees began leaving these comments after Amazon blocked employees from “liking” or commenting on Jassy’s memo announcing the back-to-office mandate, according to one employee, who asked to remain anonymous. Each comment shows the poster’s identity and role in the company.
Staff members who posted on the Slack channel said they were taken aback by the announcement. Many have expressed frustration at having to find childcare arrangements, caregivers for aging parents or possibly relocate so as to be within commuting distance of the office.
A worker said he recently leased a car with an annual limit of 16,000 miles assuming remote work was still an option; if they are required to come into the office at least three days a week, they will exceed this limit.
Others have taken the company’s former flexible working position as an opportunity to move outside the big cities to find more affordable housing and are now concerned about their commute.
An employee invited Jassy to the Slack channel, prompting staff members to encourage their co-workers to be responsible and avoid causing too much of a stir because it could cause the company to shut down the channel.
Many staff members put the phrase “Remote Advocacy” in their Slack status to show their support for the petition.
In addition to conveying their tenure concerns, the petition also presents a number of data points and studies highlighting the benefits of remote working, such as improved productivity and the ability to attract and retain. the best talent.
Previously, Amazon left it up to individual managers to decide how often their teams would be required to come into the office. Jassy had also embraced remote and hybrid working, predicting it would have a lasting impact on how people do their jobs.
Last week, Jassy acknowledged that calling employees back to the office would come with some challenges.
“We know it won’t be perfect at first, but the office experience will steadily improve over the months (and years) to come as our real estate and facilities teams iron out the wrinkles and ultimately account, will continue to evolve the way we want our offices to be set up to capture the new ways we want to work,” Jassy wrote in a note announcing the mandate.
Several tech companies have returned to in-person work as the pandemic subsided. Google and Apple have required some of their employees to return to the office since last year, while Disney began in January requiring hybrid employees to be in the office four days a week.