It hasn’t been easy, but that’s what makes Janelle so passionate about her work.
“It's an amazing feeling,” she said. “It feels incredible that we’re not only doing something to help our building during the pandemic, but all other associates, that we're able to make sure they go home to their families safe as well.”
Area of the fulfillment center floor reworked by Janelle’s team to distribute millions of PPE items like masks and gloves.
Janelle inspects a pallet of face masks and other safety supplies at an Amazon fulfillment center in Rialto, California.
Janelle’s family depended on her more than ever, and suddenly, so did her extended family of co-workers across the US; her team pivoted quickly to become a critical link in the PPE supply chain.
“We started shipping out the COVID-19 allocations. Hand sanitizers, masks, latex gloves, cleaning supplies—all the stuff needed to keep Amazon associates safe,” she said. “As far as the gloves and face masks that we’ve shipped to the other Amazons in the United States, I would say it’s in the tens of millions, if not 20 million.”
Keeping associates across the country supplied with the PPE they need to stay safe is no small task, but Janelle sees it as more than a challenge.
“It's exciting,” she said. “If we’re shipping out 1,000 cases, we have to make sure that every FC that needs them, gets them the next day. There are certain times the delivery trucks leave, so it’s exciting to get it done on time.”
“When the pandemic started, my role within this facility completely changed. My department was turned upside down.”
For Janelle, an Amazon area manager and mother of two, upside down and completely different didn’t just describe her role at work, her home life was also in flux.
“My husband was one of the ones that unfortunately lost his job during the shutdown. He wasn't put on hold; he was actually laid off.”
Keeps thousands safe