- The New York Times over the weekend published a lengthy article on life inside Amazon.
- Bottom line, working at the giant etailer seems to be a love/hate experience, flying in the face of today's HR trends regarding talent and people.
- Not only does the Times story paint a primarily bleak, unflattering portrait of life at Amazon. The story created other articles about the Times' reporting, like this one at CNN Money, or this one at Business Insider, or this one at Slate.
Tales of poor work/life balance and stressful workplace happenings flowed from the Times' article. If the ex-employees (and some anonymous ones) interviewed are telling it like it is, the company will not be winning any HR-related awards any time soon. It reads like a throwback to the days when talent was just another cog in the machine: expendable.
For example, former employees say Amazon relies on a system of anonymous evaluations that can be made through the company phone directory. It's called the Anytime Feedback Tool, the Times reported. Because of yearly culling of low-performers, employees reportedly learn to make informal pacts to collectively leave negative critiques of certain coworkers and positive feedback of each other.
What does Amazon's top HR exec have to say about that particular aspect of the Amazon way? In an email, Tony Galbato, vice president for human resources, told the Times "We hire a lot of great people, but we don’t always get it right.”
It will be interesting to see what impact, if any, the Times' article has on how Amazon runs its business.