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Flex Driver Support and How to Deal With It

Since the first one and two hour delivery hub opened in Seattle last year, Amazon has been expanding the service like mad.  Many new cities have come online offering speedy delivery for customers, as well as new job opportunities for independent contractors.  On the surface it seems like a win for everyone involved, the company, the customers and the drivers.  And for the most part it is.  But lately there have been a lot of complaints about the level of customer service that the company is providing to the drivers.  Support response times pertaining to problems and issues have been slow, if at all.  And this low quality support is directly related to a driver’s ability to not only perform the job well, but also keep the job.

Being an independent contractor,  I’m not an employee of Amazon.  I’m not in a position to advise the company on what they can or should do to remedy this situation.  (I have a few ideas, though!)  I’m not sure it is something they are even trying to remedy.  In the scheme of things, if they let a  driver go, they have 50 more to fill their spot.  What does it really matter to them if they get it wrong and deactivate a good driver?  Not much.  The only thing that truly matters is getting the customer’s order delivered within the timeframe they said they would.  And due to the customer continuing to like this type of service, deliveries will continue to be made, and drivers will continue to make money.  And that’s good for us!

As frustrating as support can be at times, drivers have no option other than to put up with it.  Growing pains for new services such as this are going to occur.  This is one of them.  You either accept it, or you move on.

The simplest thing a driver can do to avoid frustration is to do their best to not have to contact support.  I know that this is impossible in some instances, so when you do have to contact them, give them time to respond.  Don’t expect a resolution in 24 hours.  Even 72 hours for that matter.  Write your emails to them politely.  Demands are rarely met.  Take the time to make sure you are getting your needs explained.  Your thought process should be that you want to remain delivering, so word you emails as such.

Another tip is to simply to do the job well!  Although there are some good drivers that were deactivated due to reasons beyond their control, a clean record may just be your saving grace.  Show up when you are scheduled.  Be early.  Deliver on time.

What you have to remember is that this is just the beginning.  Amazon isn’t doing this as a test.  They want to grow the delivery side of their business.  And in doing so I  believe that the driver support issues will get sorted soon.  But for now, drivers will just have to deal with it. It’s unfortunate, but a fact.  The company is moving forward so fast, who knows what the delivery positions will evolve into?  Time will tell if the current frustrations will be worth it.


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