Amazon.com will hire 3 000 people in customer service in South Africa this year, the e-retailing and cloud computing giant said on Thursday.
The “virtual” roles, which will see the new employees working from home rather than a central office location, will range from customer service associates to technical experts who will provide 24/7 support to Amazon customers in North America and Europe.
The addition of 3 000 permanent and seasonal full-time positions will bring the total permanent workforce in South Africa to 7 000, the company said in a statement.
“The new jobs reflect our continued commitment to South Africa’s economic development, and I am proud to have South Africa be a growing part of our ability to deliver a great experience to Amazon customers around the world and provide employees with the opportunity to work safely from home,” said Andrew Raichlin, director of Amazon customer service in South Africa.
Candidates interested in applying must meet the following requirements: completed matric/grade 12/NQF level-4 qualification or higher, have an excellent command of English and be a South African citizen.
The technical positions will support customer inquiries on devices, digital and Alexa. These roles will require candidates to translate technical information and provide instructions to help Amazon customers troubleshoot issues.
“Since these will be virtual roles, applicants will also need a private, quiet workspace and an existing and dedicated Internet connection, according to Amazon specifications.”
“We welcome the decision by Amazon to locate more of its global services in South Africa,” said trade, industry & competition minister Ebrahim Patel in the statement.
“The economy will increasingly shift to more productive services and digital technologies, which can provide significant opportunities for young people. The Covid-19 pandemic is accelerating the digital transition of work, and this decision by Amazon to locate these jobs in South Africa shows our ability to offer a good value proposition,” the minister added.
The investment in customer service jobs comes as Amazon ramps up its investments in South Africa, especially in the cloud computing arena. The company’s Amazon Web Services (AWS) unit, the world’s largest hyperscale cloud provider, recently opened in first data centre region in Africa, in Cape Town.
AWS first established a presence in Cape Town, setting up a development centre in 2004. In 2010, Amazon customer service opened operations in Cape Town.