Amazon, needing a more tech-savvy workforce, is offering to pay to retrain its employees and help them switch to more technical jobs at Amazon or elsewhere.

The online shopping giant said Thursday that it plans to spend $700 million by 2025 to retrain 100,000 workers, or a third of its US workforce. The initiative could help Amazon find and keep more workers With a strong economy and unemployment near a 50-year low, workers have more options, giving employers a tougher time finding help.

“The harder it is to hire workers from the outside, the more sense it makes to invest in training the workers you already have,” said Jed Kolko, chief economist at job site Indeed.

The training could also help Amazon.com tame criticism from labour groups and some politicians, including presidential candidates, who say Amazon’s order-packing warehouses have poor working conditions. Workers at a Minnesota facility plan to strike next week during the company’s busy “Prime Day” shopping holiday, saying that they are not paid enough for the speed at which they’re expected to pack boxes. Late last year, Amazon raised the minimum wage for all its US workers to at least $15 an hour.

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