- Amazon is eliminating a customer-service role that allows people to work from home on a flexible schedule, sources told Business Insider.
- “As our customer service organization continues to evolve, Amazon continuously seeks to improve our dedicated support for customers and growing business needs,” an Amazon representative said in response to questions about the decision to end the Virtual Customer Service Reserves program.
- An employee affected by the decision told Business Insider: “This position was perfect for differently abled people or for stay-at-home moms like me. And now it’s been taken away.”
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Amazon is eliminating a customer-service role that could impact hundreds of jobs, sources told Business Insider.
The company told employees last week that it planned to end its Virtual Customer Service Reserves program on November 10, these sources said.
Employees hired under this program answer customer-service calls about undelivered packages, product questions, and other concerns.
Reserves employees work remotely and in many cases from home. They have flexible schedules and can work as little four hours a week, though they typically work about 12 hours weekly, on average, according to an Amazon job posting for the program.
Amazon is giving Reserves employees three options: Take on more hours by moving to a “flex” customer-service role, apply for another job within Amazon, or end their employment and accept severance.
In response to questions about the decision to end the Reserves program, an Amazon representative sent the following statement: “As our customer service organization continues to evolve, Amazon continuously seeks to improve our dedicated support for customers and growing business needs. Amazon reviews business needs to best serve customers and to provide all employees with a consistent experience.”
The company declined to respond to a question about how many employees would be affected by the program’s elimination. A current Reserves employee estimated that at least 1,000 people would be affected.
Amazon employees who can’t work more hours could lose their jobs
Customer-service employees in the “flex” program typically work 20 to 29 hours a week, which may increase during peak seasons, according to an Amazon job posting.
An Amazon employee told Business Insider that the Reserves job attracted many stay-at-home parents and people with disabilities who need flexible work schedules. The employee spoke with Business Insider on the condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation.
She said she couldn’t take on additional hours by becoming a flex employee and would likely have to accept severance instead. She said many of her coworkers in the Reserves program were facing the same predicament.
“This position was perfect for differently abled people or for stay-at-home moms like me,” she said. “And now it’s been taken away.”