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Old 01-24-2015, 10:59 AM   #1
fjtorres
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What are Amazon warehouses really like?

Straight from the workers themselves:
http://mentalfloss.com/article/61249...ouse-employees

In short:

Quote:

One Reddit user put it bluntly: “The work does suck, but all warehouse work sucks. I have experienced FAR worse conditions and been treated terrible by other Fortune 500 companies.”
Quote:

6. THE SHELVES ARE CHAOS

When items arrive at the warehouse, they’re scanned and placed in cubby holes on one of hundreds of rows of shelves. But there’s no rhyme or reason to where they’re stored, and even seasoned warehouse employees can’t make sense of it. “Each cubby hole is filled with an assortment of items,” according to a former worker.

“There might be a book, a toothbrush, a copy of a Barbie VHS tape from 1993, and a pair of moccasins. And you'll only pick one of the items.” There’s a term for this: chaotic storage.

Amazon’s database knows where there’s empty shelf space and fills it as quickly as possible to maximize efficiency. Electronic scanners tell workers where to find the items they’re looking for.
Quote:

9. THE WAREHOUSE CAFETERIA IS A WAR ZONE

Workers have two lunch options: Bring your own, or buy a meal from one of dozens of vending machines stocked with mediocre microwavable meals like burgers and hot dogs. “You’d buy a hamburger and it didn’t taste like real beef,” one former worker told us. And good luck heating up your food. Mided’s warehouse cafeteria had about 20 microwaves, and the fight for zap time was fierce. “It was a war zone trying to get enough time to heat your food and then get out without being run over,” she says. “You would see people fight. The smartest thing to do was to pack something that doesn’t need microwaving, because that was killer.”

Quote:

12. “PROBLEM SOLVER” IS A WAREHOUSE JOB

It’s their responsibility to fix other people's mistakes. If a warehouse packer screws up on the assembly line, the Amazon machine knows it. Scales weigh each package, and if the weight is off, the box gets pulled and a “problem solver” is called over to inspect it. “If there is an error during any stage of the process, I find it, correct it, and provide the feedback to the person or cause of the error,” explains one problem solver in a recent Reddit AMA.

13. THEY SEE SOME CRAZY ORDERS

If there’s one thing all Amazon warehouse workers will tell you, it’s that people order some weird things. “The amount of stand-up life-size Justin Biebers I saw was unnecessary,” Mided says. “And a lot more sex toys than you would think. Really odd ones. Even grown men or women warehouse workers are still kinda like a 12-year-old when they see that. Amazon really does sell everything.”
Plenty more, including bubble wrap, at the source.

I've seen worse myself.
At least Amazon warehouses aren't at much risk of going "boom" on you in a thunderstorm.
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Old 01-24-2015, 11:18 AM   #2
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Old 01-24-2015, 12:53 PM   #3
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Old 01-24-2015, 01:56 PM   #4
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There was a recent news show that is showing Amazon now using Robots that bring the needed shelve-rack to the pickers.

This includes putting a Spotlight onto the proper shelf to aid fast locating.
After the item is picked, the shelf returns to storage. The computer stores frequently used shelves closer to the pick station to reduce travel time.
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Old 01-24-2015, 02:37 PM   #5
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Kinda puts your cloud storage sig into context, doesn't it?
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Old 01-27-2015, 03:23 AM   #6
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Oh that makes me think maybe if I look for the Ark of the covenant on their website that they would send it to me. I kind of wanted to open that thing to see all those ghosts floating around before they melt my face away...

EDIT: I'll be damned...

http://www.amazon.com/Design-Toscano...ch+of+covenant

Last edited by Quexos; 01-27-2015 at 03:25 AM.
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Old 01-27-2015, 04:05 AM   #7
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Is that picture legitimate (Amazon Warehouse)?
My nieces would also react to those life-size Justine Bieber stand-ups and contest there should also be ones from One Direction. Hahaha. Also, I'm baffled that Amazon won't organize their things. God knows we need to properly shelf copies of Barbie VHS from 1993, 1994 to present... lol
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Old 01-27-2015, 06:41 AM   #8
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Also, I'm baffled that Amazon won't organize their things. God knows we need to properly shelf copies of Barbie VHS from 1993, 1994 to present... lol
They *are* organized.

But it isn't by some archaic, simplistic system like product name or marketting category. Rather it is by available volume space at time of arrival.
As the article says, the computers know where everything is so they don't waste time sorting and reorganizing stuff, they just stuff it in the first available cubby that can hold it. Their warehouses are a lot like computer hard drives.

Do note that the warehouse procedures they describe are for the older, pre-robot warehouses. The newer robotic warehouses are slightly different: in those, the pickers stay at their stations and it is the racks that move.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencete...eady-ship.html

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Old 01-27-2015, 01:20 PM   #9
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Is that picture legitimate (Amazon Warehouse)?
It's from the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark.
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Old 01-27-2015, 01:49 PM   #10
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Obviously, I wasn't the only one to immediately think of this scene.
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Old 01-27-2015, 03:06 PM   #11
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You have to wonder how close that is to the actual truth as far as how organized the government is, never mind big business.
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Old 01-29-2015, 09:49 PM   #12
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At my workplace, we had a warehouse of printer ribbons. They deliberately did not stock similar ribbons side by side to avoid people mistakenly grabbing the wrong ribbon when placing an order.
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Old 01-29-2015, 11:03 PM   #13
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You have to wonder how close that is to the actual truth as far as how organized the government is, never mind big business.
Very close.
If the whole country were run as "well" as government bureaucracies run, we'd still be living in caves.
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Old 01-31-2015, 03:42 AM   #14
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Very close.
If the whole country were run as "well" as government bureaucracies run, we'd still be living in caves.
We'd still be amino acids...
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Old 02-01-2015, 06:29 PM   #15
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I agree (War)e Houses are a world unto themselves.

-- Don't fear the AI, the Djinn or Skynet, rather fear the WareNet!!

While in school, I spent 6 months at a Pepsi warehouse. It was an experience!
Rampaging propane fueled forklifts driven by zonked out parolees from nearby prisons, governed by retired Military Sgts!
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