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Amazon Boosted Illinois Workforce by 72% in 2020

Amazon bucked the trend among employers in Illinois during 2020, adding 15,000 employees to increase its statewide headcount by 72%. Crain’s Chicago Business reported that the Seattle-based company met a surge in online shopping on the part of housebound consumers by opening new warehouses across the Chicago area, and will continue doing so through 2021, albeit at a slower pace.

The company, which employs about 1.3 million people globally, also said it added employees in Illinois at corporate offices, its Whole Foods Market grocery chain, Amazon Books and Five Star stores.

By the end of 2020, more than 36,000 people worked for Amazon and its various businesses in Illinois, according to the company.

Although Amazon doesn’t break out Chicago-area figures, Crain’s reported that it could now be the largest private-sector employer in metro Chicago, rivaling Advocate Aurora Health, which had about 26,000 employees at the end of 2020.

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About Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny serves as Senior Content Director for Connect Commercial Real Estate, a role to which he brings 13-plus years’ experience covering the commercial real estate industry and 30-plus years in business-to-business journalism. In this capacity, he oversees daily operations while also reporting on both local/regional markets and national trends, covering individual transactions across all property types, as well as delving into broader subject matter. He produces 15-20 daily news stories per day and works with the Connect team and clients to develop longer-form content, ranging from Q&As to thought-leadership pieces. Prior to joining Connect, Paul was Managing Editor for both Real Estate Forum and GlobeSt.com at American Lawyer Media, where he oversaw operations at both publications while also producing daily news and feature-length articles. His tenure in B2B publishing stretches back into the print era, and he has served as Editor in Chief on four national trade publications. Since 1999, Paul has volunteered as the newsletter editor of passenger rail advocacy groups (one national, one local).

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