North-West of London, in the county of Hertfordshire lies the Amazon Hemel Hempstead fulfilment centre. Named LTN2 after Luton airport, the fulfilment centre, which is the size of five football pitches, opened in the summer of 2012.
Francis Mensah joined the LTN2 team in the winter of 2015 to work in inventory control and quality assurance, making sure that all products are in the correct place and that there is enough of each item in the building at any given time to fulfil customer orders.
As part of a programme called ‘I Found the Right Place’ Amazon invited employees from fulfilment centres across the UK to explain what they like best about working at Amazon and why it is the right place for them. More than 800 employees from across the UK and dozens from each site put pen to paper.
“Amazon is a place where everyone is treated with respect and dignity, irrespective of physical appearance or nationality. Here you are welcomed and you can develop and achieve a lot. There are opportunities for you to get skills and to improve both your work and home life. If you want to progress, they will help you do it,” wrote Francis in his entry.
All of the entries were anonymised and the best entry from each fulfilment centre was chosen. The chosen employees were invited on an all-expenses-paid trip to Seattle, U.S., to explore the Amazon head office and see where it all started.
During the five-day trip to Seattle, Francis and Amazon colleagues from sites across the UK were shown around the city and enjoyed a trip up the Space Needle. They also went on a tour of the Amazon campus and the robotics fulfilment centre in Kent, Washington, where they met Amazon’s Chief Scientist.
“I loved everything about the trip, I can’t even select my favourite part, but seeing the headquarters and the Amazon Spheres were great. The Amazonians on the speaker panels were also awesome,” said Francis.
In a message to future Amazon candidates, Francis said “The benefit scheme is superb, tailored to suit each individual and flexi-time allows me to attend personal issues when I need to. Unlike other companies, here general managers are out on the fulfillment centre floors, interacting with workers, solving problems and helping out where needed.”