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Photo: Julie Clopper /
Photo: Julie Clopper /

Amazon says it’s preparing to bring aboard as many as 100,000 seasonal workers at its U.S. fulfillment and sorting centers this year — the latest indication that the e-commerce giant is set for a big holiday shopping season.

A worker fills packages inside an Amazon fulfillment center in DuPont, Wash. (GeekWire File Photo.)

That’s a new record for Amazon’s seasonal hiring, up from 80,000 a year ago and 70,000 in 2013. It’s double the 50,000 seasonal workers that the company hired for the 2012 holiday shopping season. Amazon says many of its seasonal workers go on to regular full-time positions at the company.

The news follows analyst predictions that Amazon will trounce traditional retailers such as Walmart  this holiday season with deep discounting and fast delivery.

This year’s record seasonal hiring plans come in addition to the more than 25,000 full-time workers that Amazon says it has hired for its fulfillment and sorting centers since August, to “meet customer demand and prepare for the upcoming holiday season.”

Also of note: Amazon disclosed as part of this morning’s announcement that more than 90,000 full-time employees are working in its 50 fulfillment centers and 20 sortation facilities in the country. That’s almost half of the 183,100 overall companywide employees that Amazon reported as of the end of June.

Amazon will report its third-quarter earnings on Thursday, and the addition of those 25,000 new workers since August means the company’s overall global employee count should easily surpass 200,000 workers overall.

Amazon has been adding new robots and boosting automation in its fulfillment centers, but the hiring bolsters the company’s claims that humans will remain “key to the process” of sorting, filling and shipping packages.

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