The Sheer Scale Of What Amazon Must Do Over The Holiday Season Will Blow Your Mind

Amazon warehouse employee

Amazon is a retail powerhouse.
Like any e-commerce operation worth its salt, it takes the holiday season very seriously and rakes in huge cash.

But Amazon is a nearly global company. For all intents and purposes, it delivers the world’s presents. That requires some big work.

Consider the company’s holiday statistics from last year.

An item ordered on December 22, 2012 at 11:52 p.m. PST was still delivered in time for Christmas. (The power of one-day shipping.)

Amazon shipped enough TVs to cover the field of every NFL stadium.

On November 26, its busiest day, the company sold 26.5 million items — that’s 306 items per second. Amazon hustles hard, and it’s almost certainly going to have to outdo itself this holiday season.

Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.

This Phoenix, Arizona-based fulfillment center could contain 28 football fields.

This fulfillment center is home to thousands of items waiting to be ordered. It's the largest of Amazon's fulfillment centres around the world.

Last Cyber Monday, Amazon sold more than 306 items per second.

Amazon brought in 50,000 additional employees during last year's holiday season.

Workers pick items from the shelf and fill orders.

Some items in the 1.2 million square-foot fulfillment center might be miles apart.

So Amazon employees bike around on a tricycle to race to faraway items.

Here, one worker is putting items on the shelves wherever she can find space. The average worker gets paid between $US11 and $US14 per hour.

Here's a worker sending off items on the conveyor belt for packing and shipping.

Workers carefully pack the boxes with bubble wrap. The record for most items moved from the shelves to the loading docks in one week is 2,086,548.

Employees packing boxes for shipment.

These conveyor belts move items through the building at speeds of about 20 mph.

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