Consistent, honest, and open communication with our employees allows individuals to raise concerns and have them directly addressed by leadership; it allows us to continuously improve our workplace and employee experience.
Honest and Open Communication
Our more than 870,000 employees globally are the foundation of our success as a company. Our goal is to hear from and listen to everyone. Here are some of the many ways an employee can choose to communicate with management:
Open Door Philosophy
We believe candid and constructive communication in an environment of mutual respect is essential to our collective success. We have an "open door" policy, which means we welcome and encourage any employee to discuss suggestions, concerns, or feedback with their manager, a Human Resources team member, or any member of Amazon's leadership team.
Voice of the Associate Boards
Voice of the Associate boards are in Amazon fulfillment centers around the globe—physically and virtually—providing employees a forum for expressing their concerns, offering suggestions, and asking questions on a daily basis to leadership. Leadership teams reply directly to questions, promoting dialogue and efficient remediation of issues. In 2019, our fulfillment center managers received and responded to over 225,000 comments, questions, and issues raised on the Voice of the Associates boards.
Connections is a real-time, company-wide employee feedback mechanism designed to listen to and learn from employees at scale to improve the employee experience. Each day Connections questions are delivered to every Amazon employee on a computer, a workstation device, or a hand scanner. Employees may choose to answer or not answer any question and individual responses are aggregated and shared with managers at the team level to maintain confidentiality. Connections analyzes response data and provides insights to managers and leaders to review and take actions as they uncover issues or see opportunities to improve.
- Connections generates over 500,000 responses from employees daily.
- Connections is live in 51 countries, at over 2,500 unique sites/locations, and questions are delivered in 21 languages.
Suggestions or complaints sent to a member of the senior leadership team are considered “Executive Escalations.” Any employee can utilize this method of providing a suggestion or raising a concern to leadership. All escalations are independently reviewed by Human Resources, used as a learning opportunity, and may be used to update our processes to prevent gaps in the future.
In the United States and Canada, the Appeals Process is a dispute resolution mechanism for employees in our in-scope lines of business (such as customer service, customer fulfillment, and sort centers), to challenge certain disciplinary actions. A second level manager, General Manager or a panel of peers may review the issues raised in an appeal, including management decisions, to determine if a policy or practice was applied properly and consistently. If not, we will remediate the issue in line with our policies and practices.
Employees may raise questions or report suspected violations of our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics through Amazon’s Ethics Line in over 20 languages. Calls to the Ethics Line are answered by an independent third party and may be made anonymously upon request. Our Business Conduct and Ethics team records, reviews, and investigates calls for potential violations of the Code and tracks cases through to remediation where necessary. Allegations of violations of the Code are also reported up to the Audit Committee.
Associate Insight Surveys and Pulse Surveys
Annual surveys ask employees to anonymously express opinions about issues in the workplace, and managers respond by remediating issues or making improvements.
Regular In-Person Meetings
Through all-hands meetings with General Managers, stand-up meetings with direct supervisors, and regular roundtables with senior leadership, employees have daily opportunities to engage with leaders, raise issues, and make suggestions to continually improve our workplace.
Freedom of Association
We respect freedom of association and our employees’ right to join, form, or not to join a labor union or other lawful organization of their own selection, without fear of reprisal, intimidation, or harassment. These rights should be exercised in an informed and thoughtful manner. Amazon has associates represented by some form of collective bargaining in many countries. We value worker feedback, and are committed to providing our employees with appropriate access to grievance mechanisms and remedial action, regardless of collective bargaining presence. We firmly believe it is in our employees’ and the company’s best interests to continue our direct communications, and the best way to effect positive change is for our employees and us to continue working together directly.