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Holiday Recap from the ZFC Family

TZFC Santa and his Helpershe Holiday Season signifies countless things to different people.  For some, it is time with family and friends.  For others, it’s the chance to give back to their community.  There are individuals that thrive on the celebrations and songs, and still more live for the gifts they give and receive.  At the Zappos Fulfillment Center, the holiday season means all of these things and more. 

Whether taking time out of a hectic year to enjoy a meal together, or simply utilizing dress-up days to honor team unity and personal creativity, the Zappos Kentucky Family has always had a knack for closing out the year in style.  This season was no different, including potluck lunches, charity outings, and even a genuine Santa’s Sleigh parading through the warehouse. Welcoming the winter months has never been as warm as in 2011.  

With a busy Peak Season in full swing, and long hours away from family at home, the Zappos spirit truly ZFC Holiday Hatscame out. Several groups brought joy by caroling through the Fulfillment Center with original jingles, creating a little fun and weirdness and serenading with a whole lot of cheer.  Santa, along with his elves and reindeer, delivered candy canes, smiles, and delight.  From a ZFC-wide gift drive, to serving hot meals, to fixing up a home in need, the family circle enveloped not only the walls of the FC, but encompassed the community as well.  And for those dedicated to WOW-ing customers through the holidays, parties, celebrations, thumb wars, and theme days allowed team members to join together to ring in a great end to 2011. 

Now, with both peak and the holiday season in the rearview mirror, there is one more event around the corner.  Tonight, the Zappos Kentucky Family, along with some very special guests, will put the exclamation point on a fantastic year with our annual holiday party!

Happy 2012 from the Zappos Kentucky Family!  May this year be merry and full of possibility!

ZFC Season's Greetings

Update on WMS Project

The following email was sent to our employees by Chris Nielsen (our


Thanks everyone for your patience!


Hello Zappos Family and loyal Zappos customers,

 You deserve an update on where we are with the WMS project and how things are going today.  The project officially went live last Monday, and despite everyone’s best efforts we have faced some challenges since then.

 Those challenges come in two forms: 

1)      Going through the backlog of customer orders that were built while we had the previous system offline and were transitioning to the new system.  Over the cutover weekend, we were accepting orders from Thursday through Monday but not able to process them until Sunday night.  During this time, we were doing the work necessary to change from the previous system to the new one.  That timeline meant that we needed to start quickly shipping orders with the new system.  Shipping began slower than we expected as we ran into some unanticipated mechanical, systems, process and training issues.

2)      Fixing pieces of functionality and processes that are not working as we expected them to.  As with any system transition, we are finding errors that need to be corrected, enhancements that need to be made and process changes required to maximize volume through the FC.

 The backlog challenge has been greater than fixing pieces of functionality.  Our KY team has been working incredibly hard (including extremely long hours with little or no sleep, herculean recruiting efforts to staff up, making drastic headcount realignment decisions and creatively working past every obstacle in their way) to make progress here, and we turned a corner over the weekend and Monday.  We will have over 500 temporary workers in the building this week to help us.  We are now at an outbound run rate where we are churning through the backlog.  If we continue this progress, the customer order backlog will be down to a manageable level by this weekend and cleared within days after that.

 Our tech teams are focused daily on making the changes necessary to make the system perform as we need it to and delivering efficiencies to the FC to help clear the backlog.  That process will continue indefinitely, and we are prioritizing the most important aspects for our customers and teams.

 We know that some customers have been inconvenienced as part of this transition.  Frankly, nothing disappoints us more than this.  We are addressing those individual customers and will be reassuring them that we will quickly be reverting to our previous high standards.  Our CLT team has been great at working with our customers to the best of their ability to address customer concerns.

 Over the last week, we have been inspired by your ability to Drive and Embrace Change.  Change is sometimes difficult and painful, and this transition has been both of those things at times.  Together we will work though this and come out the other side with better long-term capabilities to serve our customers as our business continues to grow. This is the biggest and most complex systems and operational transition (you might think of this as the equivalent of a heart transplant or changing the engines of a plane while in flight) in Zappos history.  Thank you for your part in making it happen!


Chris, Craig and Arun

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ZFC Happy Hula!

The ZFC PHS department is going Hawaiian!

Not only are they having a great time, but their tropical theme is bringing awareness of health-related illnesses.

Level 1 Process Manager, John Schneider says that he wants to start doing culture days more often.  He adds, “It’s a great thing to keep things interesting for the team members and just make sure they’re having fun on the job while they’re here and being productive.”

In addition to dressing up in Hawaiian hula style, they had a hula hoop contest and are playing flip cup with water to promote hydration.

Just another day at the Zappos warehouse! 

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Follow the Leader!

Who doesn’t like creating a little fun and weirdness?

We all know that the Zappos Video Team is weird, but we can be really fun too!

Our new favorite way to have fun at work is playing an old childhood favorite, “Follow the Leader”. On certain days after lunch (or perhaps even a break), we line up in single file and have some playtime on the way back to the video studios. It’s a pretty long walk, so why not have some fun along the way?

Not only is it a blast, it’s a good way to burn some extra calories, too. Team members do tend to work up a sweat as they shimmy, side step, waddle and clap their way around the warehouse.

If you're ever in the warehouse, feel free to join our game! However, there are some safety guidelines to follow: no running and no walking backwards.

That being said, what are some of your favorite ways to infuse some fun to the work day?

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Zappos Family Livestrong Day

For the 2nd year at the Zappos Fulfillment Center, as well as the corporate office, we celebrated livestrong day. On September 30th, employees were asked to find a yellow shirt (even if they have to borrow one), so they could help support this awesome charity. Zappos Family Members in Kentucky and Nevada set up bake sales, walk-a-thons, and food stands that donate all money raised to LIVESTRONG. This year we raised $2,678.00 between Kentucky and Nevada, which matched, then added to, to bring the grand total up to $15,000.00!

On October 2nd, 7 employees participated in a LIVESTRONG/Las Vegas Cancer Foundation bike ride, which raised $30,000.00. Wow!

Thank you to everyone who participated on LIVESTRONG day in their own towns or neighborhoods around the world.


Special thanks to Chris "GONZO" Gonzalez for editing this awesome video!
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Zappos FC Hero Academy

Every Month, Zappos Fulfillment Center, Inc. invites a group of employees from different backgrounds to learn and work in the FC. The job functions are usually much different, but usually directly affect their own jobs in many ways. For instance, If you are an employee of Zappos CLT, Inc., you may wonder how items are processed, how long they take to ship, etc. With the FC hero academy, employees get a hands on experience that they can use, learn from, and share with other team members for years to come.

Thank you Zappos Kentucky Family for giving us the chance to see your amazing facility!

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ZFC Team member Appreciation Day

The Zappos Kentucky Family requested all team members to report to the Break area for a "Special" Meeting. Unbeknownst to them, they were minutes away from a 2 hour break from their work. The ZFC operations managers had been planning the event for several weeks, and kept it a secret up until just minutes from the event. Thank you for all your hard work ZFC TM's!

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Sundae Fun and Massages

At the end of last month the Zappos Kentucky Family HR Team created two special treats for our employees. Not only did they have a fabulous sundae bar equipped with tasty toppings, but they also created a relaxing atmosphere with massage therapists on hand. WOW! Nothing can take you away to that 'special place' like an ice cream sundae and a massage.

Just a little employee appreciation from our friendly neighborhood ZKF HR Team!


sundae fun 1

sundae fun 2