Amazon.com will add another 100,000 full-time jobs over the next 18 months, company founder and CEO Jeff Bezos proudly announced earlier this year. The new jobs are great, but a closer inspection shows Amazon may simply be adding back jobs it helped kill off. For example, Amazon played a large role in eliminating more than 50,000 jobs in recent years from just three companies — Staples, Office Depot and Best Buy, public filings show. In March, MarketWatch estimated that Amazon will destroy 1.5 million retail jobs in the next five years. And with its push into self-driving trucks, drone delivery, automated grocery stores and more, the site said the total number of lost jobs would likely be more than 2 million.
Total Retail's Take: I'm not as apt to blame Amazon for job losses at competing retailers such as Staples, Office Depot and Best Buy. In a relatively free market economy, the best company wins. And in many cases, whether you consider it to be fair or not, that has been Amazon. Also, I'm less than bullish on the loss of jobs to technologies such as self-driving trucks, drone delivery, automated grocery stores, etc. I feel these technologies are still a ways away from widespread adoption and rollout, and therefore are of lesser concern — at least for the time being. However, Amazon's job growth claims must be examined in proper context — many are temporary and/or lower-paying warehouse or customer service positions.