From The Verge: Amazon is rolling out a new rewards program that gives its Flex delivery drivers easier access to shifts based on the amount of work they’ve done for the company. A spokesperson from Amazon confirmed to CNBC that the Flex Rewards program is in its early stages, but is being rolled out to all drivers in the US. As well as access to shifts, the program also includes access to a cash back debit card, as well as discounts and financial services.
Launched in 2015 and now available in over 50 cities across the US, Amazon Flex is a service that allows freelance drivers to sign up for shifts to deliver Amazon or Whole Foods orders. According to CBNC, the new rewards program could incentivize drivers to complete more orders for Amazon, rather than splitting their time with other gig economy services like Uber and Instacart.
Of particular use to drivers is the reward program’s “preferred scheduling” feature, which includes easier access to shifts. These are often hotly contested between drivers, and there have even been reports of some using bots to access in-demand shifts. While CNBC notes that drivers can sometimes have just seconds to sign up for shift “blocks,” higher levels of the rewards program give up to 30 minutes to accept a reserved shift. Drivers can register preferred delivery stations, days, and times, and will receive more offers of reserved shifts as they level up in the program, Amazon says.
The rewards program is based around points which drivers earn based on the number of deliveries and shifts they complete. Additional points are provided based on metrics like completing deliveries on time. Although driver’s points reset with each three month earnings period, Amazon says any rewards accrued will apply across the following period.
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