Prime Mover Magazine


Amazon Flex exploits gig economy in expanding delivery network in Australia

Global online retailer, Amazon, has announced the launch of Amazon Flex in Sydney and Melbourne, its last mile rideshare concept for part time delivery drivers.

The gig economy model offers an opportunity for drivers with their own vehicles, to sign-up and complete a four hour delivery block delivering packages to its customers via an app.

A background verification process must be completed by budding courier drivers.

Amazon Flex will enable the company to expand its delivery network and ramp up last mile deliveries during peak times without having to invest in additional assets or infrastructure.

It is not known whether delivery vehicles will need to meet a minimum safety requirement although it understood drivers must have a four door vehicle and smartphone.

Sub-contract drivers or delivery partners as they have been dubbed by Amazon, will collect packages from pick up points in Sydney and Melbourne before making deliveries to customers.

The Amazon Flex app scans packages at the pickup points, provides mapping for the most efficient route to travel and final confirmation of delivery including photos of packages once dropped off.

In the US, where Amazon Flex has been operational since 2017, drivers are expected to deliver 15 packages per hour.

According to Amazon, delivery partners will know the estimated duration and minimum payment for each block in advance, and will receive payments weekly by direct deposit.

“Amazon Flex puts delivery partners in the driver’s seat, enabling them to earn extra money with the flexibility to choose their own schedule. With visibility of how much they will be paid for a block before they accept it, delivery partners ensure their time on the road is well spent,” said Craig Fuller, Amazon Australia Director of Operations.

“We are always looking at new ways to deliver convenience to customers. As customer demand and delivery needs continue to grow in Australia, Amazon Flex gives us the agility to supplement the work we do with our existing carrier partners so we can speed up delivery times and respond to peaks in demand," he said.

"At Amazon we work backwards from the customer and, with our team of innovators, Amazon Flex give us the flexibility over time to unlock customer delivery benefits we haven’t even thought of yet.”

Amazon Flex participants will join a valued community of traditional carriers who will continue to deliver smiles for miles to customers in Australia.

Amazon.com.au launched in Australia in December 2017.

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