When we talk about big business, one company comes to mind: Amazon. Amazon is one of the biggest companies globally, and it’s even growing at a much faster rate compared to other companies in its industry. So if there is one company that is set on taking over the world, it will be this company. But being so big has its own sets of problems, one of them being, how does it manage its 1,271,000 employees?
The answer to that question is much simpler than what people expect: robust management software. But the application is much more complex. It turns out, despite having billions of dollars in revenue, Amazon does not have such software. Given that Amazon is growing much faster than it should, the company is pretty much mismanaging all of its employees.
Growing Too Fast
When Amazon was built in 1994, it sold books and other inconsequential items primarily. But it did it in the way no one else did, and that’s through the internet. Fast forward a couple of years later, when the internet became so popular that more than half of the population used it, the company became huge almost overnight.
Amazon is now reaching its $2 trillion mark this year, and it’s not a surprise to experts that it would reach that point before the end of the year. But the problem is not with its revenue but with how fast it’s growing.
The expansion is leading overworked workers across this multi-faceted company. Remember when we said that Amazon has more than one million employees? So how can these many employees be overworked? Well, when expansion takes priority over employee welfare, employees get mismanaged. We’re talking about stretched hours at work, high employee turnover, and an unsustainable HR system.
Doing Everything at Once
Another problem with Amazon’s expansion is that it’s doing everything at once in a minimal time. Every business is limited by time. Months and years pass by, and with so many projects happening all at once, no project is getting accomplished.
Amazon is planning to expand to other countries and create a robust AI system while also managing its logistical problems simultaneously, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. So once again, who gets left behind with all of these projects being implemented? The company’s employees. There are just too many things that need to be done, and by the end of the day, nothing is done, despite the long hours people have in Amazon.
So from these statements, it all boils down to two simple problems that have complicated implications for the company. First, it is expanding too fast, which spreads its manpower too thin. The second is that it’s trying to do everything despite having only enough manpower to sustain its everyday operations. So how can you fare better?
The world of e-commerce is all about to give and take. Sure, maybe during the start of Amazon, it had a monopoly over the industry, but times have changed. Various companies exist that can easily rival Amazon, each having its own business models that are employee-friendly.
For example, Shopify gives its online shops the autonomy to bring in their own team instead of letting the company handle everything. So by the end of the day, Shopify is expanding its manpower organically instead of pushing what the company can do when it comes to manpower.
Right now, Amazon realizes that doing everything at once is a problem. That’s why it’s starting to outsource some of its business operations. Recently, Amazon is giving small businesses a shot in delivering Amazon goods, giving these small businesses to grow, and putting less strain on Amazon’s employees. So what can you learn from this?
If you’re having problems with expansion or increasing the scope of a project, concentrate on that, and outsource everything else. For example, a good outsourced HR service will bring substantial growth to your company while your employees manage how you can sustain further expansions. In addition, they can handle recruitment and compensation, both of the most time-consuming in the department, and give that time to your own HR officers to help you plan out your expansion.
Step Back and See the Bigger Picture
Lastly, what Amazon executives should do is take a step back and look at the bigger picture. We’re not just talking about the revenue but the number of employees they have. They have so much manpower, but it’s being left out in the dirt because they’re all doing mundane things. It’s time to reformat the system and start anew. Maybe invest billions of dollars into AI and see where that goes.
By the end of the day, Amazon is just too big for its own good. It will still be the trillion-dollar company in the coming years, but only time will tell if it’s going to flourish or collapse under its immense size. The best thing you can do right now is learn from your mistakes and do better in the future.