In this segment of "3 Minute Stocks Updates" on Motley Fool Live, recorded on Jan. 5, Fool contributor Brian Withers discusses Amazon's (NASDAQ:AMZN) two new employment programs to help recruit talent.
Brian Withers: I am going to jump into a little company called Amazon, you might have heard of it. Ticker symbol AMZN.
Amazon had a news release in late December that announced that more than 2,000 jobs, we're going to be added to the Austin area in a tech center, over the next several years. While that's great for this tech town, that's not really what I was focused on as an investor.
There were some hidden gems buried in this text. Let me start with the backdrop on the number of job openings in the U.S. It's been around 11 million for the past six months or so. Unemployment, it's dropping, dropping, dropping, and then now is less than 7 million.
You could take, if there was a match, obviously, you could take every unemployed person, stick them in a job, and still have 4 million jobs to fill. If you have been hiding under a rock for the past six months, maybe you haven't seen that there is a talent war out there, but there is.
Now, Amazon is stepping up, and here's what they said in the announcement. They have two different programs that they've started. One's called Returnship, and then the other one is called Best Fit.
Returnship is a 16-week paid program for those who have been out of work for an extended period of time. They've said about a year. It's focused on giving you skills and training till you've succeeded. You apply for a role that's targeted for you based on your jobs, background, and skills.
Jobs like data scientists, recruiter, software development engineer, area manager. This program is particularly focused as mentioned in the news clip that there's over 2 million women that have dropped out of the workforce since COVID began. This is helping those folks who've had a tough time getting back to work. A great way to onboard and getting paid while you do it.
Best Fit, I really like this program. It's focused on hiring software engineers. With all the software companies that we talked about, there is a shortage of software developers and software engineers. If you have two years of professional experience and one year of software architecture design, you can apply through this Best Fit program and be considered for thousands of jobs across the company.
This is a tremendous program and I hope this recruiting avenue catches on for other companies. It's just really frustrating to have to apply to software engineer job after software engineer job into different departments and getting passed around to different recruiters and hiring managers.
It looks like Amazon is trying to capture that and find people a great fit of where they could add value and hire more of the people that want to come to their company.
I had a friend who lost her job just before COVID started and amazingly, it took her more than a year to land a job, despite incredible efforts and having 15 years of remote work experience before coronavirus started. I'm hoping programs like this help the cluster that is today's recruiting process.