Dr. Ranj Magic Breakfast in front of a table filled with test tubes and science experiments.
Dr. Ranj teaches Biology
Photo by Matt Crossick/PA

10 things we’re proud of in 2020

As we approach the end of 2020 we reflect on some of the initiatives that have inspired our teams this year.
on 30 December 2020
We have strengthened our long-term commitment to small businesses, launched a host of new education resources for young learners, deployed our logistics network to support the UK Government and community partners, and we have been recognised for our determination toward building a diverse and inclusive workplace.

Here are the top 10 things we’re proud of in 2020.
  1. The Climate Pledge continues to grow

    The Climate Pledge, co-founded by Amazon and Global Optimism, is a bold ambition for Amazon and other signatories to achieve net-zero carbon by 2040, 10 years ahead of the Paris Agreement.

    This year 30 companies joined The Climate Pledge, including Mercedes-Benz who will also deliver more than 500 electric vehicles to Amazon’s delivery fleet in the UK.

    Customers can now discover and shop for sustainable products more easily thanks to the Climate Pledge Friendly programme. It features more than 40,000 products across the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy with one or more of 19 sustainability certifications.
  2. Amazon ranked #2 in Forbes’ World’s Best Employers 2020

    We were delighted this year to see Forbes rank Amazon as number two on its World’s Best Employers 2020 list.

    Forbes surveyed 160,000 employees from 750 companies around the world and asked them to rate their willingness to recommend their employers to friends and family.

    To all of our employees who took part in the survey we say a big thank you, without you we could not have achieved the amazing milestone on this list. Our people are the number one reason Amazon is a great place to work.
  3. Keeping our employees safe

    The health and safety of our people continues to be our top priority as we face the challenges associated with COVID-19. To date, we've made over 150 significant process changes to ensure the health and safety of our Amazon teams.

    Back in March – after Amazon had already implemented social distancing and invested in masks, gloves, enhanced cleaning, and many other health and safety measures – company leaders asked themselves, “Could we do more?”

    They knew that testing would be an important tool, and that supply would probably be tight, so they decided to pursue in-house COVID-19 testing. By October, Amazon launched the programme in the US and the UK, providing testing to front-line employees.

    Beyond testing, we wanted to find more ways to support our employees and contractors through the pandemic. We established the Amazon Relief Fund with a $25 million initial contribution focused on supporting our independent delivery service partners and their drivers.

    And we recognised front-line people with an additional special bonus this holiday season of £300 for full-time employees and £150 for part-time employees. Combined with other holiday pay incentives, in this quarter alone we invested over $750 million in additional pay for our front-line hourly workforce. This brings our total spent on special bonuses and incentives for our teams globally to over $2.5 billion in 2020, including a $500 million thank you bonus earlier this year.
  4. Amazon is a Top 10 Inclusive Employer by British LGBT+ Awards

    A fantastic highlight for us, and for our glamazon LGBTQ+ employee affinity group and their allies across Amazon, was being officially named as a Top 10 Inclusive Employer by the 2020 British LGBT+ Awards.

    During Pride Month, we celebrated the stories and achievements of our LGBTQ+ colleagues, our customers and their communities. AmazonSmile highlighted the LGBTQ+ charities Stonewall, Just Like Us and New Family Social, and Amazon Music launched a new daily feature called Pride History which customers could access via Alexa.
  5. Using our logistics for good

    From delivering testing kits to donating healthy breakfasts and care packages, this year we put our logistics network and expertise in the service of communities, families and healthcare organisations.

    We are proud to support the UK Government’s testing programme by distributing testing kits to homes around the country, ensuring that those who are unable to reach a testing site can still get tested. So far, we have delivered 6 million COVID-19 testing kits, free of charge.

    We also launched our COVID-19 Supplies store for Amazon Business users, which means critical medical supplies and PPE can get to the frontlines of the pandemic.
  6. Launching the Amazon Longitude Explorer Prize

    Delivered by Nesta Challenges, the Amazon Longitude Explorer Prize pairs science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) with entrepreneurial life skills to encourage young people from all backgrounds to turn great ideas into reality.

    The Prize includes an array of free online resources which teachers can easily incorporate into lesson plans. These are aligned with the school STEM and citizenship curriculum and adapted to the COVID-19 classroom restrictions schools currently face, including bubble teaching and remote digital learning.
  7. Delivering for Magic Breakfast

    Through the Amazon In The Community (AITC) UK programme we have helped charities such as Magic Breakfast, British Red Cross and Home Start.

    To mark the two millionth meal delivered by Amazon for Magic Breakfast, we also launched the ‘Very Important Breakfast (VIB) Clubs’ where we surprised hundreds of children this Christmas as their lessons were led by stars such as Professor Green and Rachel Riley.

    The clubs are now freely available on the Amazon YouTube channel to bring some Christmas magic to all children this festive season.
  8. Amazon Small Business Accelerator – helping start-ups and entrepreneurs take off

    Amazon teamed up with Enterprise Nation, the small business support network, to launch the Amazon Small Business Accelerator, a free, online educational programme for 200,000 small businesses and entrepreneurs seeking to start a new online business or grow an existing one.

    During the 12 months ending May 2020, independent businesses selling on Amazon, most of which are small and medium sized businesses, sold more than 600 million products in our stores, up 100 million from the previous year – that’s 1,200 products sold per minute. On average, our selling partners achieved around £75,000 in sales, up from £60,000 year-on-year.
  9. World-leader in renewable energy

    Amazon announced it would become the largest-ever corporate purchaser of renewable energy to date, adding 26 utility-scale wind and solar energy projects, totalling 3.4 GW of electricity production capacity. The company’s total renewable energy investments to date will supply 6.5 GW of electricity production capacity – enough to power 4.5 million homes for one year.

    A new project will be based in South Lanarkshire in Scotland – the largest single-site wind corporate power purchase agreement (CPPA) project in the UK.

    In October, Amazon’s fulfilment centre in Tilbury unveiled the largest solar roof top installation of any Amazon site in Europe. The building has 2 million sq. ft. of operating space – equivalent to 28 football pitches – and has been fitted with more than 11,500 module solar panels, which generate the equivalent amount of electricity required to power 700 homes for one year.
  10. Providing free science, tech and maths education resources

    Since March we’ve seen teachers, parents and pupils around the country take on the challenge of adapting to a world of virtual classrooms and social distancing. Amazon teamed up with education bodies to launch Maths4All helping parents and students with free, curriculum-linked learning resources from trusted sources – all in one place.

    As part of Amazon Future Engineer, this year we also created the Cyber Robotics Challenge which offered students a three-hour virtual challenge to learn the basics of programming. Research shows the UK needs 21,000 more computer science graduates on average, every year, to meet the demands of the digital economy. By making computer science skills more widely accessible from childhood to career, the Amazon Future Engineer inspires and empowers young people, regardless of their background, to take up careers in computer science.
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