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Why Is Amazon giving employees $10,000 to quit?

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When Amazon bought Zappos in 2009 they also picked up and ran with an interesting HR policy Tony Hsieh had implemented in the iconic on-line shoe store. The program is called Pay-To-Quit, where once a year the company offers employees the chance to quit their jobs and receive a payout.

According to founder and CEO, Jeff Bezos, “The goal is to encourage folks to take a moment and think about what they really want.”

This week, Amazon launched a new pay-to-quit initiative, but this time the focus isn’t on culture, it’s all about service delivery. In June 2018, Amazon created the Delivery Service Partner Program, providing a way for small business startups to begin delivering packages for the company. The intent was to speed up the delivery process, and remove the reliance on UPS and Fedex.

This week, Amazon gave the program a boost by offering employees up to $10,000 in startup costs to leave the company and join the program, as well as three months of gross pay.

This could be a smart business move for employees who are able to pick it up and run with it. Whilst Amazon is rapidly automating the rest of its supply chain, the last mile will continue to require humans and vehicles - for a while longer at least.

By Rowan Schaaf
Rowan Schaaf

About the author

Rowan Schaaf

Rowan is the co-founder and CEO of Pattern. He has been involved in a number of technology start-ups, and has also held senior executive roles in both the technology, and technology marketing sectors.