Across the UK, Amazon’s diverse team of more than 70,000 people carry out hundreds of different roles at sites and offices large and small – and nothing is more important than their safety in the workplace.
This commitment is part of our vision to be Earth’s Best Employer. Amazon CEO Andy Jassy was clear in his letter to shareholders earlier this year that we want to be ‘best in class’ when it comes to improving safety across our network. It’s a vision we’re committed to achieving, and we continue to make measurable improvements in keeping employees safe, thanks to the work of our safety experts and all of our teams.
Safety is woven into everything that we do and we are committed to ensuring everyone’s safety and wellbeing every day. We train and educate our employees so they have the knowledge, tools and resources they need to work safely. It’s our responsibility to protect every one of them, every step of the way. So, while one incident is one too many, our most recent record reflects our commitment to doing just that.
Amazon’s safety facts
- Amazon employs 369 safety professionals across the UK. These are individuals who are steeped in safety compliance, best practices, industry standards, and risk prevention.
- Our fulfilment centres in the UK each have, on average, more than 80 fully-trained first-aiders.
- In the past 12 months, we’ve conducted more than 418,210 safety compliance inspections across our UK network.
Let’s look at our safety record in more detail
RIDDOR stands for Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations, and you can find out more about it here. Through the RIDDOR process, every UK business is legally required to report all incidents where someone is off work for more than seven days as a result of an injury. That includes Amazon and more than 70,000 UK employees in 2022.
In the UK, we benchmark against the latest national data published by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), which confirms Amazon has over 50% fewer injuries (RIDDOR incidents) on average than other transportation and warehousing businesses.
In 2021 Amazon’s 55,000 UK employees worked a total of more than 77 million hours across our network and during that time we reported 298 injuries through the RIDDOR process. 276 (or 93 per cent) of these were for more minor injuries, such as a muscle strain that fall within Category C of RIDDOR reporting. The remaining 22 (seven per cent) were more serious Category B injuries and were all fractures, apart from one where an employee suffered a serious hand injury. Category A applies to any incident resulting in the death of an employee, and there were none of these.
To put this into context, this means RIDDOR incidents in 2021 occurred at a rate of one for every 132 years worked.
How we are innovating to keep people safe at work
We are encouraged with our progress. While we’re proud of our safety record, we recognise there’s always more to do. That’s why we continue to invent and invest to eliminate and manage hazards. We’re continuing to build our expert teams too, hiring and developing the best safety professionals and maintaining a single-minded focus on reducing risks and eliminating hazards.
We focus on designing safe buildings, equipment and processes, creating new solutions to reinforce and improve safety in our operations. We identify opportunities to innovate so we can achieve even better outcomes and solutions for our people. This includes integrating new and advanced technologies that interface safely with our employees and the environment, and increase safety across all of Amazon’s processes. By integrating robotic technology into operations, we can now reconfigure workstations and reduce the distances employees need to walk to pick products, which reduces physical demands.
In fact, we have a dedicated European Innovation Lab in Italy which is tasked with developing new technologies to further enhance the employee experience and workplace safety. Since the European Advanced Technology team’s creation, more than 550 new pieces of technology have been introduced and more than €400 million has been invested across Amazon fulfilment centres in Europe.
We are always listening to what our employees have to say, and get honest feedback about safety from our teams and operational site leaders. This is essential if we are to continually improve our work environment. Our open-door philosophy encourages employees to raise safety suggestions and concerns, as well as to provide feedback through their manager, HR team member, and any of Amazon’s leadership team.
Taking care of our employees’ health and wellbeing is a priority. It’s why we offer private medical insurance to all our full-time employees, regardless of their level, tenure, or position. When employees need to take time away from work, they are given paid time and paid holidays, in addition to other leave and options that are available for mental and physical health concerns. It’s also worth noting that the vast majority of ambulance call outs to our buildings are related to pre-existing conditions - not work-related incidents. As a responsible employer we will always call an ambulance if someone requires medical attention.
There’s nothing we love more than showing what it’s really like working at Amazon. That’s why we’ve opened up our fulfilment centres to our customers and anyone interested in seeing behind the scenes of Amazon’s workplace.
Book a tour of one of our sites.