Amazon sought out warehouse staffers with a “great sense of humor” to build a squad of Twitter warriors to knock down criticism of its fulfillment centers, a leaked document reveals.
The document outlines the criteria Amazon used to select model warehouse staffers for what was then a pilot program. The candidates needed a clean HR record, a strong performance background, “a great sense of humor” and an enthusiasm for “rebutting our critics in a polite, blunt way,” according to the memo.
Amazon thought the ideal ambassador would have three to four years of experience in a warehouse, but the memo noted that newer employees with just a year under their belts “can be very passionate and effective.”
While Amazon wanted the workers to speak for themselves, the memo shows company officials wanted a standardized format for their Twitter handles and usernames. They mulled adding an emoji to the username to “give personality, for example a small box emoji,” it says.
The document includes early examples of how the ambassadors would respond to online criticism from Amazon customers, journalists, lawmakers and other “influencers.”
“| work for Amazon and not sure about other facilities but I’ve never felt pressured to pee in a trash can,” one trainee wrote in a draft tweet. “My managers understand when you gotta’ go you gotta’ go.”
Amazon wrote in the memo that it was “encouraged by many of the un-coached responses” like that one.
While the keyboard warriors were free to rebut claims about Amazon’s working conditions or pay, the company told them not to respond to tweets about employees’ right to unionize or certain “compound issues,” such as an inquiry about Amazon advertising on the right-wing blog Breitbart.
Asked about the leaked document, Amazon spokesperson Rachael Lighty said the company’s online ambassadors “choose to share their personal experience” about fulfillment center work.
“The FC ambassador program helps show what it’s actually like inside our fulfillment centers, along with the public tours we provide,” Lighty said in a statement.
Source: New York Post