Amazon.com Reviews

Updated 24 October 2014
Updated 24 October 2014
3,697 Reviews
3.3
3,697 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Amazon.com Chairman, President, and CEO Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos
2,534 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • You can definitely learn a lot in short spam in Amazon as they make you work a lot (in 115 reviews)

  • Density of talent: Some really smart people spoiling their careers here (in 336 reviews)


Cons
  • Company is not at all sorry to screw people's work-life balance for itself to excel (in 605 reviews)

  • There is literally no work life balance inside this company (in 139 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 10 people found this helpful  

    Burnout factory

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer in London, England
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer in London, England

    I worked at Amazon.com full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    I learned a lot. Amazon employs some very smart people who've done good work solving some very hard problems. If you want to know about scaling, look no further.

    There's no question that having Amazon on your CV is good for your career.

    Cons

    Poor direction from senior management who couldn't decide what they wanted.

    Bureaucracy. Oh, the bureaucracy.

    Politics. Woe betide you if you worked in a group or on a project that senior management didn't find sexy.

    Churn. Despite intensive recruiting, people left faster than they could be replaced. The hiring bar was rightly high, but there were too many ways to fail the interview for spurious and/or arbitrary reasons. The recruitment process may work better in Seattle where Amazon is one of the biggest names in town, but the competition for developers in London is too intense. There are other prestige tech giants, there are big media companies, there are startups, there are banks with deep pockets. In this environment, Amazon can't turn down good people and meet its hiring needs (and indeed, they had to import lots of staff from Seattle to keep the office afloat).

    On-call. Being woken up in the middle of the night got very old after a while.

    And finally, the kicker: work-life balance. The company pretty much destroyed a few of my colleagues. Amazon are very good at using guilt to get people to work all the hours God sends, for no particular reward. At the end of one spectacularly hellish project, everyone got -- a T-shirt. Not the best way to make your employees feel valued.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Decide on your product road map *before* sending your development teams on death marches.

    Admit that London is a different labour market to Seattle and act accordingly. It's hard to get things done when half your colleagues have left and there's nobody to take their place.

    Don't treat staff as disposable tools to burn out and throw away. It's not nice and it's not good for your business either.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 3 people found this helpful  

    High pressure, medium reward

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Human Resources Team Member
    Former Employee - Human Resources Team Member

    I worked at Amazon.com full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Great place to build experience develop quickly

    Cons

    Annual review process with a forced distribution curve causes cultural issues in teams. The work-life balance is very poor due to the high expectations on each role and managers are not given the time and freedom to manage leading to dissatisfaction across all levels. Current focus is on externally bringing in skills rather than developing our existing internal talent.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Obsess over your great employees in the same way you obsess over your customers.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Very metric driven company, sometimes to the point where it becomes irrational. Many opportunities within the company.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Amazon.com as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Good on the CV
    Become comfortable with data
    The experience is what you make of it, you can do as much work out of your remit as you want

    Cons

    Can be too metrics driven
    Can be overworked
    Very frugal company, will hire as little people as possible meaning workload can be unmanageable.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    A decent place to work, if you enjoy being highly stressed.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Amazon Warehouse Worker in Hemel Hempstead, England
    Former Employee - Amazon Warehouse Worker in Hemel Hempstead, England

    I worked at Amazon.com as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Some vast and interesting technology. Can be fun when working with the right group of people.

    Cons

    Despite high levels of strictness and seemingly having very high targets for all staff. Many people do not practice what they preach, which sometimes makes for an unsafe environment in warehouse floors.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat people a bit better, stop pushing so hard and so constantly. People may in turn enjoy working for you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 4 people found this helpful  

    Amazon is a great company if you are a customer, not so much if you happen to work there!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales in London, England
    Former Employee - Sales in London, England

    I worked at Amazon.com full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great place to learn. Working with the best in the industry

    Cons

    Poor management approach where individual managers do not take responsibility and provide no guidance/mentoring. When something goes wrong, they can wash their hands of it using the 'leadership principles' as cover. Poor pay. Bad office conditions.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take some responsibility and don't hide behind the silly leadership principles. Provide better growth opportunities to staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    A real mixed bag

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Development Manager in London, England
    Current Employee - Software Development Manager in London, England

    I have been working at Amazon.com full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The people are fantastic - the recruitment process ensures you'll get excellent, technically skilled, challenging colleagues. The technology is brilliant - Amazon as a whole really leads with the standard of internal technology. Working in the Glasshouse means you're working on Amazon Instant Video, which is a very sexy (and interesting) product.

    Cons

    Your experience will vary massively depending on who manages you. Management standards are wildly inconsistent, and some of the most senior managers display surprisingly amateurish leadership skills.

    The culture is very bureaucratic - expect to deal in wordy narrative documents for everything from feature specs to promotion justification. The constant priority shifts mean teams don't actually deliver a lot. The operational support required means a lot of engineers spend a week every month getting woken up in the middle of the night on a regular basis.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Allow engineers to actually build stuff.

    Make sure senior management actively prioritise programs which affect the whole department.

    Care a little more about your staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Senior Operations Manager

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Operations Manager
    Former Employee - Senior Operations Manager

    I worked at Amazon.com full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Fast pace, leading company in the field. Fantastic focus on customers. Good opportunities for promotion due to company's rapid expansion.

    Cons

    No training so you're expected to learn everything yourself as you go along. Expect you to dedicate your life to the company with total obsession. Most fulfilment centres are in the middle of nowhere.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Increase your attention span - as soon as one project is announced and partially started the focus goes on to the next big thing without ever having finished the first.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    A lot of reporting, poor management, but great package.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Amazon.com full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    - Package: good salary, RSUs
    - I learned a lot
    - Looks good on your CV (very selective & successful)
    - Brand awareness (clients)

    Cons

    - Poor management: ex Boston Consulting Group mainly, they don't care about their staff nor HR
    - Extremely political: directors and category leaders use deep dives, financial reviews (operational plan), pricing reviews and backgrounds check (business school, consulting) to promote or to get rid off employees
    - Data centric / mental: analysing spikes or drops in base points even when it's not relevant (just a couple of units sold, or analysing sales over a couple of hours only on a very specific day: WoW and YoY!)
    - Workload: up to 60 hours per week, including Sundays (the data is processed on Saturdays so you receive business reports on Sunday morning and questions from the management on Sundays afternoon / evening)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It works, so not sure why they should change anything. It's just horrible for most employees / high turnover the first 2 years.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Can get lost in the company and heavily performance monitored

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England

    I have been working at Amazon.com full-time

    Pros

    Ok salary with shares. Nice colleagues.

    Cons

    Can get stuck in a rut with you career. Daily repetitive tasks with not much variation. Yearly performance is very taxing and difficult to get promotion.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 8 people found this helpful  

    Robotic

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Manager in London, England
    Former Employee - Manager in London, England

    I worked at Amazon.com full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    * You will learn at an accelerated pace - I learnt more in 18 months than I would have gained in years elsewhere.
    * In general the other employees are a great bunch of people

    Cons

    * Very questionable leaders - they really only care about spreadsheets and results and not the person delivering them.
    * Extremely difficult to get promoted - your manager has to write a promo doc (up to 10,000 words) - I have know some managers to ask employees to write their own would you believe.
    * Work life balance is poor
    * FRUGAL FRUGAL FRUGAL - everything about the company is cheap, great for its customers, not so great that devote their work day to it.
    * Hiring is a joke - interviewers spend their time finding reasons not to hire people, plus decisions are made by committee so someone will always find a reason to say no. What happened to looking at talent and potential.
    * Payrises are rare and limited - entirely depends on the share price just before review.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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