• By Mariko Oi
  • Business reporter

Image source, Getty Images

Technology giant Amazon has announced job cuts for hundreds of employees at its cloud computing business.

The company has shifted its strategy to include physical stores, Amazon Fresh, which launched in 2020.

On Tuesday it said it would remove its self-checkout system called Just Walk Out from all stores.

The company said the latest job cuts will impact several hundred positions in sales, marketing and global services and a few hundred positions in the technology team for its brick-and-mortar stores.

“These decisions are difficult but necessary as we continue to invest, hire and optimize resources to deliver innovation for our customers,” an AWS spokesperson told the BBC.

The company also said “it will continue to hire and grow, especially in core areas of our business,” adding that there are thousands of jobs available and that it is working to find internal opportunities for employees whose roles are affected.

Amazon said the cuts will occur at its operations around the world, although the majority of AWS functions are in its home city of Seattle.

The company said U.S. workers will receive wages and benefits for at least 60 days, get help finding another job and access temporary health benefits. They are also eligible for severance pay.

At the end of last year, Amazon had a total of more than 1.5 million full-time and part-time employees, excluding contractors and temporary staff.

Amazon has focused on artificial intelligence (AI) through AWS, including investing in security and research startup Anthropic last month.

Technology giants, including Microsoft, which has invested in ChatGPT, are competing to develop their AI capabilities.

According to US career consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, the technology sector will shed 168,032 jobs in 2023 – a 73% increase compared to 2022.

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