Amazon Alexa Headcount Surpasses 10,000 Employees – Here is the Growth Rate
- Amazon now has more than 10,000 employees working on Alexa and Echo and over 2,200 open positions
- It took Amazon about 550 days to go from 1,000 – 5,000 Alexa employees and 350 days to go from 5,000 – 10,000
- Amazon was hiring about 7.4 Alexa-dedicated employees per day between 2016-17, but that accelerated to 14.2 per day over the past year
- 80.3% of Amazon’s open positions related to Alexa and Echo are in the U.S.
David Limp, senior vice president of Amazon devices, told the Wall Street Journal at the annual Tech.D Live conference that Amazon has more than “10,000 employees working on its Alexa virtual assistant and the Echo devices it powers.” That is double the size of the staff dedicated to the voice assistant as September 2017. At that time, Geekwire reported nearly 1,100 open positions related to Alexa. Just over one year later, total Alexa headcount has doubled and the open positions have also doubled totaling just over 2,200.
Amazon has over 21,000 open jobs listed on its career website today. About 10.5% of those are related to Alexa or the Echo smart speaker directly. That would reflect another 22% increase in Alexa-related jobs when fully staffed.
Alexa Hiring is Accelerating
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos commented at a conference on May 31, 2016, that Amazon has surpassed 1,000 Alexa dedicated employees. We don’t know precisely which day Amazon passed each milestone, but we can determine from the public announcements that it took about 545 days for Alexa headcount to grow from 1,000 to 5,000 and 351 days to rise again to 10,000. Between May 2016 and September 2017, Amazon was adding about 7.4 Alexa-dedicated employees per day. That rate nearly doubled to 14.2 new Alexa-dedicated employees per day between September 2017 and November 2018. In case it wasn’t already obvious, Amazon is clearly dedicated to Alexa.
Google is fairly good as obscuring the total number of openings related to Google Assistant but it appears the number may be fewer than 1oo. Apple-related job searches with Siri in the description total 195 while there are 123 Microsoft job openings associated with Cortana. Granted, these three technology companies have many jobs that support Google Assistant, Siri and Cortana that may not include the name of the assistant. For example, many of the AI and app-designated jobs may fall into this situation. Google Maps certainly makes Google Assistant more useful and Skype increases the value of Cortana, but neither app necessarily lists jobs as assistant-related. With that said, we are talking about listings in the range of only 5-10% as high as Alexa so we can confidently conclude Amazon is being far more aggressive than its peers from a hiring perspective.
80% of Amazon’s Alexa Hiring is for the U.S.
Another interesting data point is that 80.3% of the jobs tagged as “Alexa” or “Echo” in Amazon’s jobs site are categorized as U.S.-based. Amazon is certainly building out international staffing associated with Alexa if you consider that more than 400 jobs are available outside of the U.S. However, it is also clear that hiring intensity remains strongest for U.S.-based positions.