From Body Mechanics to Mindfulness, Amazon Launches Employee-Designed Health and Safety Program called WorkingWell Across U.S. Operations
Today Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) announced the launch of WorkingWell, a new comprehensive program providing employees with physical and mental activities, wellness exercises, and healthy eating support that are scientifically proven to help them recharge and reenergize, and ultimately reduce the risk of injury. The program is part of the company’s investment of more than $300 million into safety projects in 2021, and its mission to be Earth’s Safest Place to Work. There are a number of components of WorkingWell, each of which was developed in collaboration with employees from within Amazon operations. Aspects of WorkingWell piloted in the U.S. in 2019, and the program has since expanded to 859,000 employees at 350 sites in North America and Europe. By the end of 2021, WorkingWell will expand further to cover all of Amazon’s operations network in the U.S. with the aim of cutting recordable incident rates by 50 percent by 2025.
The health and safety of employees is Amazon’s number one priority and has been since day one. The company works closely with health and safety experts and scientists, conducts thousands of safety inspections each day in its buildings, and has made hundreds of changes based on employee feedback to improve their well-being at work, including development of the WorkingWell program.
“Amazon takes our safety very seriously, and my managers have made it clear to me it’s more important than anything, even productivity and quality,” said Jeffrey Ku, operations employee at an Amazon fulfillment center in Aurora, CO. “WorkingWell is an extension of that—it makes sure we’re taking care of our minds and bodies. It encourages us to make positive changes to how we work, and since I started watching the program’s health and safety videos, I’ve incorporated a stretching routine into my day.”
Similar to other jobs of this kind, about 40 percent of work-related injuries at Amazon are musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) which include sprains or strains caused by repetitive motions, and they’re more likely to occur among newer employees, many of whom might be working in a physical role for the first time. Pilots of the WorkingWell program have reduced these injuries, and have had a positive impact on regular day-to-day activities for employees outside of work. In fact, this program—along with other company initiatives focused on early MSD prevention—helped decrease MSD-related injuries by 32 percent from 2019 to 2020.
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