Amazon.com Interview Questions & Reviews
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Software Development Manager Interview (Neutral Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 6 weeks - interviewed at Amazon.com in July 2014.
Interview Details Applied though Amazon website, I was contacted by the recruiter at Amazon who arranged a telephonic interview. Two telephonic interviews one with Software Development Manager and other with Software Engineer.
First telephonic interview was generally around my past experience both technical and behavioral mostly "tell me about the time questions.." questions. I was asked about a project I was really proud of and high level architecture of the project. I took the Situation Action Response approach for all my answers. Keeping in the leadership principles in mind and focusing on them in my answer's. I asked a few times if I needed to go into details (I was ignored) I believe they have a set of questions and they just run through them.
Second round of interview was scheduled with Senior Software Development Manager but instead a Software Engineer called - so it turned out to be a technical interview - again it was mainly on the architecture of my current project and than follow up questions on why we are doing things in certain way I did reply to all of his questions when it was 3 mins remaining he asked me to write a code to implement a stack. I took time here as I wrote the sudo code (dint need it but I dint want to spoil it for me), I told him I am writing the sudo code first. I wrote the code and read it out I believe he was happy with it. I apologized we over ran the allocated time. The guy who called me sounded really cool and relaxed. His questions were impressive.
It took about a week for them to let me know the answer in each instance I did follow up after a week. I don't really get the reason for rejection. I have emailed the recruiter but I don't think they will reply. The whole 2 interview took about 6 weeks.
Interview Question – I did not think any questions were difficult everything was common sense. Below are some questions I was asked.
1) Tell me about a project that you are proud of
2) What matrix did you use to determine the success?
3) Tell me about instances where you had most difficult time with people management.
4) How did you work with a low performer with was the outcome?
5) Did you have to fire anyone?
6) What are the disadvantages of Agile?
7) What is the high level architecture of your current project?
8) Have you implemented a project from scratch how did it go? High level architecture.
9) Implement stack in any language. Answer Question
Associate Partner Manager Interview (Negative Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Amazon.com.
Interview Details First had a 45 minute phone interview with a case study. Then I had 5 30-45 minute long interviews at the head office. I felt like this was quite excessive. Prior to applying I had quite high standards towards Amazon, however in these face to face interview I was not impressed by all the managers I met. Some of them seemed cold and were not the easiest to understand. Also I found most did not seem super positive about amazon.
I then did not receive an offer for that role, but they made it seem like I had received an offer for a short term project role during the initial phone call. The HR team set up a meeting with the manager of the project and I was told prior to the phone call it was just an informational call to see if I was interested. However when I got the phone call it was a phone interview which I was not expecting, as I thought it was up to me to accept the role. I was then brought in for another face to face interview with two people and once again although these interviewers were nicer, I still did not feel like they were super proud about Amazon.
All in all, my opinion of Amazon as a company has changed throughout this process. I was not impressed by the people I met. I do think that the employees in the London office are a step down from their American counterparts which is quite sad for me. One of my feedbacks was that appartenly my communication responses were jumbled however I found roughly 4-5 of my interviewers (out of 7) had very similar styles and did not have the standard of communication that I would expect from the managers of the teams.
Interview Question – Nothing was too difficult. Answer Question
Software Engineer Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 5 months - interviewed at Amazon.com in July 2014.
Interview Details I applied online the process took several months. There were to rounds of phone interviews followed by an on-site, full-day interview.
The interviewers on the phone were both chilled out and helpful.
They asked some basic computer science related questions that I cannot recall but it wasn't hard.
Both phone interviews had one coding task as it's main part which I had to conduct on the fly through a website that provided real-time visibility of my code to the interviewers.
The first one they assessed if I'm capable of applying the OO design principles and made me implement a card shuffler.
On the second phone interview I had to implement a function which returns the string versions of numbers in English, e.g. 11 => eleven.
Interview Question – There were no unexpected questions, they don't ask framework or language specific stuff which was a big relief. Answer Question
Product Support Specialist Interview (Neutral Experience)
Interviewed at Amazon.com
Interview Details This was a series of two phone interviews followed by four back to back interviews in person. The questions were really structured and all competency based around adherence towards their leadership principles. You so get the same questions asked quite a few times but you should still make sure you come armed with dozens of examples that have numbers behind them.
Interview Question – Describe a time in which you used data to make a decision. Answer Question
MBA Program Interview (Negative Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied through college or university and the process took 2 days - interviewed at Amazon.com in March 2014.
Interview Details CV and cover letter submission followed by online maths test (v quick time limit). Two 30 minute interviews in round one and then three interviews in round two. All competence-based questions. Ended without the interviewer really getting to know anything about the interviewee. Interviewers current Amazon employees (not HR).
Interview Question – When did you use deep data analysis to solve a problem Answer Question
Recruiting Coordinator Interview (Neutral Experience)
I applied online and interviewed at Amazon.com.
Interview Details had first quick phone interview with a polite recruiter then a second telephone interview was arranged. Interviewer was unfriendly and did not try to build a rapport at all. I'm grateful that I've not been invited for one to one interviews based on my experience as well as many other reviews. not worth your time and preparation
Interview Question – questions were not difficult but not clearly presented Answer Question
Internet Fraud Investigator (German) Interview (Neutral Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Amazon.com in November 2013.
Interview Details The process took about two month and was done in 3 stages.
1. A preliminary phone interview which took about 10-15 minutes. The recruiter talkes a little bit about the job and asked if I am still interested in it. During this interview a second interview was scheduled with one of the department heads.
2. Again a phone interview which lasted a little bit longer maybe about 30 minutes. He mainly wanted me to tell him about a time when I had to do this or that or when I was faced with a difficult situation etc.
3. The final interview took place in London and it took a few hours. First a presentation on the company and the department in particular was given which was followed by a small test. One part of it was to write an Email in German and in English to a fake customer whose account was being deleted. The test took about 45 minutes. After this I was interviewed by three different people from the department. Questions were again mainly focused on situations I was in and how I handled them.
Interview Question – They give you a preliminary idea of what kind of questions will be asked. So I did not had any surprising questions. Like I mentioned before a lot of them asked me to tell them about a time when I ,e.g. had a difficult situation with a customer and how I solved it. Another one was if there was ever a time where I had started a project and someonelse came by and told me to do it differently and how I handled this particular situation. Answer Question
Associate Partner Manager Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Amazon.com in May 2014.
Interview Details 1. CV/cover letter. 2. SHL numerical/verbal. 3. Telephone interview - 30 minute CV questions and 2 competencies, then 15 minute role play. Felt I did quite badly, but still progressed. Just prepare by looking on the website for the information you need, and anticipate problems. Two competencies were really in depth.
4. 4 back to back 45 minute interviews. 30 minutes competencies and 15 minutes role play. Honestly, the role play is REALLY easy. I only "messed up" by not completely clarifying my position on one of them - e.g. pick one because lower price point, may increase competition, influence dominant seller to reduce prices further etc, and misreading a column on one, which I was then corrected on. Take away - there is a right answer for each one imo even thought you're told there isn't. And it's easy, so just prepare by understanding each of the services offered.
The competencies I think are really based on their leadership principles. When have you made a mistake, improved processes in a team etc. I looked on glassdoor beforehand and saw someone say this, but I prepared more for competencies for the role, rather than leadership principles.
The HR at Amazon are the best and most efficient I have come across interviewing for companies. You get news on every stage each day. Apply, next day invite for tests, next day, invite for interview etc. AND although I didn't get an offer in the end, someone had the balls to call me up and give me feedback, which I really appreciate.
Feedback was good on most of it, good on customer obsession and very analytical, but they felt I didn't go into depth enough with some of the competencies and also weren't sure I was motivated enough for the role (which is odd because I really was!)
My opinion was that actually one of the interviewers didn't like me much, or rather wasn't completely happy with my competencies. I actually think the other 3 liked me. Possibly it was 50/50 for one of them, but I'm pretty sure one of them vetoed my app. The interviewers were all really good, and pushed you for answers; sometimes deliberately aggressively, I think to test how you act under pressure/deal with objections.
I have to say though the competency questions are ridiculous, and all they do is encourage liars. These so called competency based questions, are largely regarded as useless, when considering if someone is either competent or fits in with the organisations culture. I actually do think I was a good candidate and would have been a good fit, but I agree with the feedback that I wasn't exactly great with the competencies, despite the fact I had good and relevant experience. I have gotten through on competency based interviews before, and I've gotten offers on how confidently I can embellish past experiences to the point of near deception - and I'm someone with years of work experience, so I hate to think what the average fresh out of uni grad is doing!
Interview Question – The interviewer who didn't like me was probing one of my competencies, asking me silly questions about how I handle things in my role I have nothing to do with...and wouldn't accept that it wasn't part of my role at all...which was odd...! Answer Question
Associate Partner Manager Interview (Neutral Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took a day - interviewed at Amazon.com in May 2014.
Interview Details There were 4 separate interviews with 4 interviewers (as explained in email).
The structure of each is competency questions first then a case study. The formers are the usual questions, nothing too surprising whereas the latter is, imo, what determines who gets hired. I think they are looking for people who are especially analytical. One of the questions was something like what data would you use if Amazon were to add a new category.
Interview Question – Out of all of the below sellers which one would you choose to promote (be the recommended seller) Answer Question
Project Specialist Interview (Neutral Experience; Average Interview)
I applied in-person and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Amazon.com in November 2010.
Interview Details 2 interviews, I was already working at Amazon at the time. Make sure you research the company, its values, and being well prepared is absolute key - you can't afford to be taken by surprise by some question or other.
Interview Question – What would you change in the processes Amazon apply? View Answer
Negotiation Details – What negotiation? Frugality is real, it's a case of take it or leave it.
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