The big picture: Amazon is in the process of assembling its own Covid-19 testing lab with the possible goal of conducting regular testing of all employees. The company isn't sure how far along in the process they'll get before this whole thing blows over but believes it is worth investing in regardless.
Amazon said it has made over 150 significant process changes at sites around the world to ensure the health and safety of its teams including distributing masks to employees and conducting employee temperature checks.
The company believes that regular testing on a global scale across all industries could help keep people safe and get the economy back up and running. Unfortunately, to realize that goal, there would need to be “vastly more testing capacity” than what is available today.
If every person, including people with no symptoms, could be tested regularly, it would make a huge difference in how we are all fighting this virus. Those who test positive could be quarantined and cared for, and everyone who tests negative could re-enter the economy with confidence.
To get there, Amazon has moved a group of team members with a variety of skills - from research scientists and procurement specialists to software engineers and program managers - from their normal day jobs over to work on the initiative.
Amazon conceded that they aren’t sure how far along in the process they will get “in the relevant timeframe” but believe it is worth trying and are ready to share any findings they obtain with others.
The hope is to start testing a small number of front line employees soon.