With an unusually large surge in online shopping this holiday season due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, multinational package delivery companies are hiring more than 2,000 positions in Lenexa, Shawnee, the greater Kansas City metro and statewide in Kansas.
Delivery companies FedEx, UPS and Amazon are hiring seasonal and part-time workers to meet the growing demand in online shopping orders. The companies say they have also made internal changes as far as COVID-19 safety measures, as more and more shoppers shift online.
Here’s a look at some seasonal job opportunities in the greater Kansas City area:
UPS is looking to fill more than 350 local job positions, 245 of which come out of its Lenexa location. Positions include part-time supervisors, feeder/tractor trailer drivers, personal vehicle delivery drivers, driver helpers, and additional warehouse workers and package handlers.
Chelsea Allison, human resources director for UPS’s Central Plains District, said that this year in particular, UPS needs to increase staffing “now more than ever” in both seasonal and permanent positions to support local communities heading into the busy holiday season.
“We do know as a company that this year, it’s more essential than other previous years just with everything going on in the community,” Allison said. “So we’re proud to be heroes at UPS and to be able to bring to everybody’s doors what they need right now.”
UPS has been hiring all year long, and facilities are more staffed this year than last year at this time, Allison noted. Last year, 37% of seasonal workers were given permanent employment after the holiday season ended.
But the COVID-19 pandemic has hampered the company’s traditional hiring process. UPS previously hosted large, in-person hiring events to meet the seasonal demand in workers. Now, UPS has adjusted the hiring process to include phone and Zoom interviews.
The company also relies on internal referrals with current employees, traditional and social media promotions of job opportunities, advertising signage and listings on jobs websites and connections with companies that have had to lay off employees due to COVID-19 economic shutdowns.
“We’ve had to get a little creative,” Allison said. “We know many Americans are maybe out of work right now. UPS’s doors are open.”
As far as COVID-19 safety measures, UPS says it provides employees with personal protective equipment, including masks and hand sanitizer.
Anyone interested in UPS employment can click here.
FedEx Ground is hiring at least 1,000 people at facilities in Shawnee, Olathe, and Kansas City, Mo. Nikki Mendicino, a FedEx Ground spokesperson, said some of these open positions may become full-time job opportunities as demand for services expands amid the pandemic.
In an internal company interview, Chris Winton, senior vice president of human resources for FedEx Ground, said FedEx is hiring tens of thousands of new positions across the country this holiday season “to move unprecedented volumes.”
“We work in a high-intensity, fast-paced environment where this job requires you to load, unload, lift and maneuver packages, but we do it as a team, and it’s all hands on deck,” Winton said.
Seasonal workers are also frequently promoted from within for full-time positions, Winton noted.
Anyone interested in FedEx employment can click here.
Amazon is looking to hire about 1,000 seasonal workers across a mix of fulfillment centers, sorting centers and delivery stations in Shawnee, Lenexa and the greater Kansas City metro area, as part of the company’s push to hire some 100,000 workers in North America.
Three new Amazon facilities are also set to go online in Kansas next year.
Daniel Martin, operations public relations manager for Amazon’s central region, which covers the state of Kansas, said the hiring surge is affected in part by the rise in e-commerce retailing. The company’s fulfillment and logistics network is “continuing to grow,” especially during the pandemic, he added.
“We have as a result of the pandemic, seen increased customer demand, so we are building capacity to meet that demand,” he said.
In response to the pandemic, Amazon says it has put several measures in place to protect customers and workers.
Martin said the company plans to spend $10 billion dollars in 2020 on COVID-19 safety-related measures such as purchasing personal protective equipment like masks and gloves, temperature checks, hand-washing stations and hand sanitizer, additional cleaning regimens and technology that facilitates physical distancing. Amazon also offers COVID-19 testing at some sites.
Employees at some Amazon locations overseas planned walkouts last week over issues ranging from fair pay to COVID-19 safety measures. No known major walkouts have yet occurred in the United States.
In a separate statement, Martin said the walkouts are part of a “series of misleading assertions by misinformed or self-interested groups.”
“Amazon has a strong track record of supporting our people, our customers, and our communities, including providing safe working conditions, a $15 minimum wage and great benefits, leading on climate change with the Climate Pledge commitment to be net zero carbon by 2040, and paying more than $5 billion in taxes in 2019,” Martin said.
Last year alone, Amazon promoted more than 35,000 hourly employees to full time positions, Martin added.
“Really, these seasonal roles can be a springboard into a full-time career at Amazon,” he said, noting Amazon’s focus on career training opportunities, even outside the company.
Anyone interested in Amazon employment can click here.