Amazon go stores: people move out, technology moves in

2 min read

Who doesn’t love a fast, convenient shopping option?

I mean, it’s why online shopping has soared in popularity in recent memory. People are busy and need an option where they can buy their desired items with a few clicks of a button. In today’s terms, especially due to the pandemic, this has latched itself into industries beyond the usual suspects, such as food and grocery delivery with options like DoorDash or InstaCart.

And again, who wouldn’t love this? No needless human interaction, you can do it on your own time, the delivery comes quickly, and you usually do not have to leave the comfort of your home. It’s a method of maintaining our busy lives without any waste of time, and it has worked so well that Amazon translated this no person, quick option model into grocery stores.

They’re called Amazon Go stores, and it’s basically your traditional grocery store with the aisles and variety of food options. All you need is to check-in with the Amazon Go app, enter, select your items and scan as you go, and then simply walk out of the store. Some stores have carts that scan the items for you; just set your desired items into the cart, and it will recognize the item placed inside. See HERE for a video showing them at an Amazon Fresh store.

So, yeah, they’re a quick stop-and-go and a great addition to someone’s busy day, so as a typical consumer, I would be glad to see it in action. However, from an employee’s perspective, this could be detrimental. It appears as though Amazon is replacing humans with robots, instead of having them work together. Amazon has denied this claim.

“It’s both incorrect and misleading to suggest that Amazon destroys jobs – the fact is that no other U.S.-based company has created more jobs than Amazon. In the U.S. alone, Amazon has created over 500,000 jobs for people with all types of experience, education, and skill levels. Amazon jobs – including at Go stores – come with great compensation and benefits, including our $15 minimum wage that is more than twice the national minimum wage.”

And this may be true. A lot of the online orders that appear to the consumer without any work on their end other than payment and a few pushes of buttons have more people working behind the scenes than one might think. Think Amazon Prime, for example. There are people at fulfillment centers, those packaging the orders, drivers delivering the orders to the correct houses, and many more. What appears to be a one-stop shop has a larger chain of events and personnel than one might think.

This may hold true for Amazon Go stores, too. Amazon may be creating more jobs behind the scenes making sure the technology is intact and working properly and those who have to manage the fulfillment on items at a store’s closing at the end of the day. However, are these jobs equal to the ones that they are replacing? Meaning, Amazon may be increasing technological jobs, but what about the traditional cashier… manager… greeter… and so on?

Let us know what you think of Amazon Go stores in the comments below or tell us on one of our social medias: @consumersense on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

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