Amazon lays off hundreds, pointing to Jeff Bezos' focus on Alexa

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Amazon is cutting hundreds of positions at its headquarters and global operations, a move that comes after several years of significant growth.

The downsizing follows a hiring spurt that had the company's Seattle headquarters going from 5,000 employees in 2010 to more than 40,000 people.

Some employees have already been informed that they have lost their jobs, while others will be told in coming weeks, according to the paper. However, at the headquarters in Seattle, the trend is witnessing a reversal of sorts, with the company laying off hundreds of workers.

According to Amazon's careers page, it is now advertising 12,359 positions and 286 part-time positions, on a global scale.

The company is thought to be consolidating its established retail business, while expanding other units.

"For affected employees, we work to find roles in the areas where we are hiring", the spokesperson said.

The news of a worker reduction in one particular area comes after years of nearly rapid hiring, but also an abrupt change in the other direction.

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Amazon created over 130,000 new jobs worldwide a year ago. Amazon very recently conducted hiring freezes, possibly showcasing a self-correction to its less recent employment habits. Amazon ended 2017 with 566,000 employees, 66 percent more than the year prior, according to its Q4 earnings report.

Citing a person familiar with the matter, Reuters on Monday reported that the job cuts would be in the "low hundreds".

It appears the company isn't looking to reduce its overall headcount.

The reductions are part of a broader reorganization at the company, but some see the moves as a shift toward using more robots and computers for functions once performed by humans.

Currently, the company has over 4,000 job listings on its website for the local office.

"We use our performance-management process to recognize talent, help employees develop their skills, and in some cases, make employees aware that they are underperforming", a spokesman said.