19 JAN 2018

To the discovery of Amazon headquarters in Seattle

The entrepreneurs of the TechMission2018, organized by the “Gruppo Giovani Imprenditori di Confindustria Lombardia” in collaboration with the American Consulate of Milan, visited the CES 2018, but also Amazon headquarters on 7th Avenue in Seattle and they were impressed for this place. It is, in fact, a place of work so large, well-kept, in one word “spectacular” where everyone would like to work. For entrepreneurs, visiting Amazon office was an opportunity to take inspiration for their business, primary purpose of the TechMission2018.

Day One and Doppler: the buildings of Amazon

Amazon headquarters are located in the city center of Seattle, unlike many other companies that, instead, prefer to rise in places far from the chaos of the city, and host 40 thousand employee. The headquarters are divided into 2 skyscrapers with 3 steel and glass spheres in the center. These 2 buildings are called “Day One” and “Doppler”. Day One is a name that is linked to the philosophy of Amazon: every day is the first day of a new project and in fact at the entrance of the building, you can read the mantra of Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon:

“There’s so much stuff that has yet to be invented. There’s so much new that’s going to happen. People don’t have any idea yet how impactful the Internet is going to be and that this is still Day 1 in such a big way.”

The first 5 floors are places dedicated to the meeting between the employees, with the hope that from the comparison, new ideas can be born. They host supermarkets, shops, cafes, restaurants and areas to sit, rest and relax. On the first floor there is “Amazon go”, a supermarket without cash desks. Currently Amazon go is only reserved for Amazon employees, but will soon be open to the public too. As soon as they enter in the supermarket, customers pass their smartphone onto a reader and sensors record the products they are taking. Once out of the store, customers pay their bill through their Amazon account. The goal of this innovative supermarket is to ensure that customers can shop without exhausting lines at the cash desks. Of course, there are also advantages for Amazon: it can collect new data on users’ tastes.

Amazon began its ascent selling books, probably it is in memory of its origins that designed the Kindle, the reader of electronic books. When you enter in Day One, you can see on the wall all the models of the Kindle since 2007, to retrace the history of this instrument that has changed the way we read and think about books.

The 3 spheres: symbol of Amazon headquarters

Symbol of Amazon headquarters, however, are the 3 steel and glass spheres that host thousands of plants. The spheres are located in the sunniest point of Amazon campus, not far from Seattle’s most famous building, the Space Needle. Light is essential for the growth and the survival of these plant species, which include rare species and carnivorous plants, but natural light is not enough, for this reason 80 additional lamps were added and they are as the lights which are used to illuminate baseball fields. The lighting and the temperature of these plants are controlled by a computer. The plants of these greenhouses are accustomed to mild climates: the temperature during the hours of the day is 22.2 degrees with low humidity, during the night it is reduced and humidity is increased.

The spheres have cost 4 billion dollars and the works are going to end during this year. They are going to be places where nature is going to be the master. Of course these spheres are going to be workplace with open spaces, not with cramped and classic meeting rooms or offices. They are going to be open also to the public, non-profit associations are going to be hosted and environmental meetings and visits dedicated to schools are going to continue.

La sede di Amazon con le 3 sfere vista dall'alto

Amazon and dogs: in memory of Rufus, Amazon mascot

In Amazon headquarters many spaces are dedicated and equipped for dogs, places designed in memory of Rufus, the dog owned by the company when it was founded. It is common for employees to bring their dogs with them when they go to work.

Leaving Amazon offices behind, the TechMission2018 visited Microsoft’s and noted that Seattle is a sort of innovation city where, in fact, many companies have planted and watered their roots: Boeing, Real Networks, as well as Amazon and Microsoft just mentioned. All suggestive places, which it is important to visit to take inspiration to ensure that, as stated Bezos, every day is the first day of a new project.

Edited by Lucia D’Adamo, supervised by Marco Pirrone

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