A report has claimed that some Amazon warehouse workers suffer the daily indignity of being shown warning video clips depicting silhouettes of former colleagues fired for stealing, all in order to cut the amount of stock theft the company suffers.
This loss-prevention technique, reported by Bloomberg, was revealed by current and former Amazon warehouse workers and security members, with one describing the measure as "offensive".
Of the 11 Amazon workers interviewed, many noted that the TVs showing the messages also infrequently displayed warnings about employees sacked for violent behaviour (as well as other more positive messages). But these were not their main concerns; they said wages and a heavy workload were more pressing issues.
The report only refers to Amazon's US warehouses as being subject to the anti-theft videos containing silhouetted images of ex-staff with words such as "arrested" and "terminated" superimposed over the top. Sources speaking to the BBC said Amazon UK warehouses do not employ the same measures.
"There's a certain percentage of people that will always steal"
The president of LPT Consulting, Pat Murphy, said that corporate concerns around stock theft are a constant concern, stating: "There are people who will never steal. There's a certain percentage of people that will always steal."
Murphy also mentioned that although Amazon's alleged methods are almost unheard of in the corporate sector, they are indicative of the psychology around the theft of goods from employees: "You're always trying to influence that middle group by reminding them there is a high probability they will get caught, and if I get caught, these are the consequences."
With informative posters purportedly adorning the walls of American Amazon warehouses without TVs, maybe Amazon should also focus on any rogue drones stealing goods instead as it continues to develop its Prime Air endeavour.