Amazon's Auburndale fulfillment center opens, adding 500 jobs in Polk County

Amazon just opened its newest operation, a fulfillment center in Auburndale, where 500 jobs starting at $15 an hour are up for grabs.

“Those 500 jobs represent a lot of opportunity for people who live here,” explained Amy Palmer, Auburndale’s community development director.

Palmer says new jobs are especially important right now because so many people are unemployed as a result of COVID-19. Polk County’s unemployment rate exceeds 13%.

In the last seven years, Amazon has built six centers in Polk County. Company officials say Amazon has invested hundreds of millions of dollars and created 3,000 new jobs for the county.

It has also given Polk County a reason to brag.

”Polk has become the e-commerce distribution center for the state,” commented Sean Malott, president of the Central Florida Development Council.

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Amazon said it has invested so heavily in Polk County because of its central location. From there, items can be shipped anywhere in the state and arrive the same day.

Because Amazon has so many jobs open nationwide -- more than 130,000 -- it just held a virtual career day to make applying and interviewing easier. Amazon managers taught participants how to best show off their skills when they apply for a job.

LINK: To see what jobs are available, visit https://www.amazon.jobs/en/.