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Amazon Interview Questions

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  1. Helpful (1587)  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through other source. The process took 4+ months. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA (US)) in May 2013.

    Interview

    Called out of the blue, asked if I'd be interested in interviewing. Still not entirely sure how they got my name. Had first phone interview the next week, asked no personal questions, all technical in nature. Total of 3 phone interviews and an in-person trip out to Seattle.

    Took about 4 months start to finish. The people in the in person interview were wonderful. Very smart, laid back, and understanding. Got lunch, small tour of campus, and learned what I'd be doing. Got the offer 2 business days after the in person interview.

    Sadly, I signed a NDA and I respect the terms of that. As such, I can't give you any specific questions, but I'll gladly give you the best advice I have.

    Phone Interviews :

    Phone interviews are sucky by nature. Coordinating a call from west to east coast alone is painful, add the fact that phones just take away the benefits of body language, and just make it harder to hear, and you've got a recipe for disaster. But fear not! Here are some helpful hints, some of which are obvious, some of which are not.

    1. Get ready ahead of time. I just mean, get to the area you'll be doing the interview beforehand. I'd recommend an hour or more, just to get your nerves ready. Breathe, get used to the surroundings, and get everything laid out ahead of time. Which brings me to...

    2. I know it's a "programming" interview, but for the love of all things good, have a pen and paper ready and at your disposal. Bring a backup pen. Much like a printer, the pen will fail at the worst possible time. You may also need a laptop, as I was asked to do "on the fly" programming. But close anything and everything distracting. Speaking of...

    3. Pick a spot where there are no distractions. You'll want your undivided attention on this interview. Don't have BookTweet or FaceSpace or MyGram or that crap open if you have a laptop. And I personally wouldn't pick a public space, you never know when an annoying parent will put their screaming child right beside you.

    4. Breathe. Just breathe. Take a moment, stretch, and remember you got this. If you have trouble hearing, don't be afraid to ask again. Don't be afraid to say you don't know. Do as for clarifications, and state assumptions up front. Always re-state the problem as you understand it.

    As for the content : For the love of God, know what a time complexity is, and how to determine it for any and all code you write. Know the time complexities of all sorts. Know all data structures, how to use them, and properties of each. (Insertion time, deletion, etc) Generally know what heck you're talking about. But don't talk too much. You don't want silence at any point really, but you certainly don't want to let the interviewer not get a word in. Know graph theory, tree theory, and all the fun stuff associated with more "complex" structures. Understand what your language does behind the scenes, as far as GC and compiling go. Know how your language use internal structures to manage the code/objects you write.

    **Continued below**

    Negotiation

    As a recent grad, there wasn't much room for negotiation.


  2. Helpful (366)  

    Senior Software Architect Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 1 day. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA (US)) in January 2019.

    Interview

    There is one phone interview for an hour. If you clear this interview, you will be invited for an onsite interview. There are five interviews onsite, all in one day. Interviews are in a casual environment. After the first two interviews, you take a break and are escorted for lunch.

    Interview Questions

    • Most questions are built around Amazon's 14 principles.   22 Answers
  3. Helpful (145)  

    Senior Program Manager Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 3+ months. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA (US)) in March 2020.

    Interview

    I will split this review into 2 sections pertaining to my preparation process and interview process.

    PREPARATION:
    First, I prepared by reaching out to my OCM (Office of Career Management) part of my MBA program. They reached out to the alumni that worked in the specific job and connected me with them. This was essential to my process and helped me a lot as it helped me get an inside look of the interviewers thought process before the interview.
    I then prepared a document to save and answer any interview question that I could find from resources, such as Glass Door, pertaining to typical Amazon behavioral interview questions.
    I also watched interview related YouTube videos that helped me prepare. Since Amazon is such a large company and hires a lot of people, there are a lot of these videos available. There are a few YouTube channels dedicated to the Amazon hiring process and interview preparation.
    I then reviewed the leadership principles and familiarized myself with them. I paired behavioral questions with these principles, and related them to my experience via the STAR format.
    One thing I HIGHLY suggest is practicing your responses, making them fluid and natural as part of a normal conversation. Record yourself, practice in the mirror, etc. Also, do NOT simply write down your responses and read them to the interviewer. This will get you negative points, and possibly cause them to pass on you.

    INTERVIEW:
    Total time: 3 HR, 15 Min.
    4 interview, 45 min long, 15 min. break after 2nd interview.
    Amazon is moving towards online interview process. There are not doing as much on-campus interviews or flying candidates out to the location for in-person interviews.
    My Amazon interview was a total of FOUR interviews. Each of these interviews lasted for 45 minutes. Amazon will try to do all 4 of these interviews within 1 day.
    Be prepared to commit to the interview date, and be prepared for it to take the better half of the day.
    Each interviewer was punctual and direct. They gave a quick introduction of themselves, asked for a quick introduction of myself, and then quickly moved into behavioral type questioning.
    Preparing ahead of time is essential. I HIGHLY recommend the STAR format. Amazon is very results driven. Don't focus on non-essential information. Focus on actions and results.
    Each interviewer will ask you for more details and challenge you during the interview. Be prepared to be challenged and have those answers ready if possible.
    2 of the interviewers I had gave me hypothetical questions to get to know my thought process better and to learn what my managerial style is like.

    All in all, it was a great experience. If you make it to this round of interview, you will most likely do well. Amazon is selective in their candidates, and seek out very qualified individuals for positions like this. You will more than likely enjoy this interview. My preparation helped me a great deal. Do not take the preparation lightly.

    Finally, the questions that I included were part of my preparation and found online. They were also asked by the interviewer. Not all of the questions asked are included.

    Interview Questions

    • Why Amazon?   1 Answer
    • Tell me about a time when you had to leave a task unfinished.   6 Answers
    • Tell me about a time when you gave a simple solution to a complex problem.   1 Answer
    • Tell me about a time when you invented something.   2 Answers
    • Tell me about a time when you had to work with incomplete data or information.   1 Answer
    • Tell me about a time when you influenced a change by only asking questions.   1 Answer
    • Tell me about a time when you solved a problem through just superior knowledge or observation.   Answer Question
    • Tell me about your proudest professional achievement.   Answer Question
    • Tell me about a time when you took a calculated risk.   Answer Question
    • Tell me about a time when you had to work with limited time or resources.   Answer Question
    • Give me two examples of when you did more than what was required in any job experience.   Answer Question
    • Tell me about an unpopular decision of yours.   Answer Question

  4. Helpful (1238)  

    Area Manager Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon in January 2014.

    Interview

    A compilation of all the behavioral questions on this website.

    1. Tell me about yourself
    2. Strengths
    3. Weaknesses
    4. Why Amazon?
    5. How can you translate your skills towards Amazon?
    6. What experiences do you have that separate you from the rest?

    Groups/ Leadership
    1. Tell me about a time when you were leading a group, were assigned a goal, and did not reach it
    2. Tell me about a time when you had a group conflict and how did you overcome this conflict?
    3. How did your actions in a leadership role increase productivity?
    4. Tell me about a time when you dealt with an employee with poor performance
    5. What is your take on leadership?
    6. Tell me about a time when you had a group conflict and how you overcame this conflict?
    7. What kind of roles have you done that were leadership roles?

    Behavioral Leadership & Safety & Customer Service
    1. Tell me about a time when you dealt with ambiguity?
    2. How important is safety to you? Rank Customer Service, Quality, Safety
    3. Do you go against a supervisor who made a decision that goes against corporate policy and is a potential safety issue for one of your employees
    4. How would you handle an employee who showed up to work drunk? (not very relevant)
    5. Name a time you had to convince someone to do something they did not want to do
    6. Tell me about a situation where you directly impacted customer satisfaction
    7. What type of leader are you? Explain your leadership style. What does it mean to be a leader?
    8. How do you motivate people?
    9. What did you admire most about one of your previous supervisors

    Negativity
    1. Tell me about a time you failed and how you handled it?
    2. Tell me about an ethical conflict with your boss and how you’ve handled it
    3. How do you deal with stress?
    4. Have you ever proposed an idea to a superior and were ignored despite knowing that it would produce a positive result? How did you handle it?
    5. Explain a time when you had to deal with poor job performance
    6. Name a time you screwed up
    7. What frustrates you

    Continuous Improvement/ Problem Fixing
    1. Tell me about a time when you leaned out a process
    2. Tell me about a time you had a difficult job to solve
    3. Walk me through a different scenario of a process you invented or improved
    4. Tell me about a time you attempted to refine a process and failed
    5. Give an example of a time when you found a simple solution to a seemingly difficult problem
    6. How has your past experiences included lean management, six sigma, kaizen

    Interview Questions

    • Tell me about yourself. Don't say something typical   28 Answers

  5. Helpful (132)  

    Operations Manager Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Chandler, AZ (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied in-person. The process took 1+ week. I interviewed at Amazon (Chandler, AZ (US)).

    Interview

    Phone screen done by a recruiter then an on-site interview with four leaders. During the on-site you will take a situational math question that is ratio based. After that you will do up to four individual interviews using Amazons leadership principles. The questions need to be answered using the STAR method.

    Interview Questions

    • Tell me about a time when you had to make a quick decision that was going to have a significant impact on the business.   6 Answers

  6. Helpful (88)  

    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at Amazon.

    Interview

    The best interview process was insanely fast and easy maybe because of pandemic crisis we are facing. None... direct hire after completing the knowledge assessment. After successful submission it takes several days before the background check to complete and verify I'd.

    Interview Questions

    • None... direct hire after completing the knowledge assessment   8 Answers

  7. Helpful (89)  

    Solutions Architect Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA (US)
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Amazon (Boston, MA (US)) in February 2020.

    Interview

    It was a fair process, the first round was telephonic and then on-site. Right from my telephone round to accepting the offer the process was very organized and streamlined. The recruiter I was working with was amazing.

    Timeline:
    1. Applied:12/23/2019.
    2. Recruiter Reached out:01/09/2020.
    3. Telephone Round: 02/04/2020.
    4. Response from Recruiter: 02/06/2020
    5. On-Site: 02/28/2020.
    6. Job Offer: 03/09/2020

    Telephone Round:
    The first step is the telephone round with Sr Solutions Architect where you will be tested in various areas. The interview break-down is 80% Technical and 20% Behavioural. The interviewer was very polite and humble. Your goal should be to make the interview as interactive as possible.

    Technical Section
    You will be tested in the following 4 areas
    1. System Design: You will be given a scenario and will be asked to design it.
    2. Software Engineering Principles: Understanding of REST APIs and OOP principles.
    3. Networking Concepts: Understanding of Sessions, Authentication, Caching, Encryption, security, HTTP vs HTTPS and working of OSI layers is extremely important.
    4. Scalability and Performance: Every design recommendation you make needs to perform and scale well. Research on HA and Scalable architectures.

    Behavioural:
    Make sure to answer all questions using the STAR method. The questions that were asked were no different than the ones that have been posted on Glassdoor. The key indicator of success is to give precise answers that will showcase what you have done i.e. never use "we" always narrate your answers using "I".

    On-Site:
    Before your on-site interview, your recruiter will reach out to you to give you pointers. These were very helpful during my process. Make sure to take notes and ask questions to your recruiter about your on-site interview.

    The on-site loop will consist of 5 rounds. You will be given an option to take an hour for lunch or you can have lunch with an Amazonian (This is not part of the interview). I decided to meet up with a fellow Amazonian for lunch. Before we jump into interview rounds some basic tips. Amazon Leadership principles, you have to know them thoroughly.

    1st:
    The hiring manager was very polite and greeted me well. This round was mostly talking about my past experience and how it relates to the current role. Be prepared to talk in-depth about your experience. Every question you answer will have follow up questions and this goes pretty deep. So make sure when you prepare you go deep to the root of the problem. Key emphasis will be on your initiatives and how did you drive towards a successful solution. You will be given some tricky situational questions and will be tested on your response. The questions were similar to what is posted on glassdoor. Be prepared with at least 2 examples for each question. This round also consisted of Behavioural questions which will start with "tell me a time when". A mistake that I made during my interview that you should avoid, DO NOT mention/say things that you can't elaborate.

    2nd:
    The second round was purely focussed on system designing. This will include whiteboarding, you will be given a problem statement and will be asked to come up with a design for it. Now the key to answering design questions is to not start scribbling on the whiteboard but to take a step back and think through the problem. I told my interviewer that I would like to draft my solution on a piece of paper first and then whiteboard it. The question will be vague, so it will be your responsibility to ask follow up questions. For this round, you will need to brush up on system designing concepts. I read a lot of blogs on Medium for this. I would also recommend opening an AWS account and designing a simple HA system.
    I can't share the exact questions but they can be anything related to Amazon Products.

    3rd:
    The third round was a mixture of Behavioural and System design. Again, I can't stress enough on practising whiteboarding. Technical questions can range from Website designing to understanding OSI layers. The interviewer tested me on different components of software architecture: Front End, Back End, Application Server, Web Server. For my interview, I had to showcase an understanding of Abstraction and Encapsulation on a system design question. Always remember to look out for hints. If you get stuck the interviewer will intervene and provide you hints.

    Lunch: I opted to have lunch with an Amazonian. This is not part of the interview loop but make sure to be professional and ask the right questions. I took this opportunity to ask more about Amazon culture, projects and expectations.

    4th & 5th
    Fourth round I think was the bar raiser round. This was purely behavioural. Fifth-round was mix was behavioural and System Design. Design questions were purely from my past experience. I was asked to design the architecture of a solution that I had developed.

    Interview Questions

    • Signed an NDA, but all questions were similar to what has been shared previously.   7 Answers
  8. Helpful (77)  

    Business Intelligence Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA (US)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA (US)) in March 2020.

    Interview

    Early March:
    recruiter calls and says my profile looks good for a BIE role and will i be interested and willing to relocate?

    rectuiters want you to succeed so listen to them. The questions you will see here are already availabe on the web so take it seriously and have compelling stories for all of them. use STAR method and practice with someone as much as you can. I say it again practice it with someone again and again and again. Quantify your result like saved cost by 50%, increased rev by $2M. think about all the possible questions your story may raise. They is looking for people with diverse experience than people who are super technical. you may be awesome in coding but if you dont have stories for all of the 14 LP (you can ignore frugalty and hiring the best if you are applying for entry/mid level) then it will be very difficult. Have good set of questions for the interiewers they love answering them.

    My sql was little bit rusty I spent too much time in situation part. You should spend a lot of time in Action and use "I" not "We". I didnt have good answers for probing questions from the bar raiser so got a rejection

    It was painful to go through the whole month of preparations and getting a rejection from Amazon but this experience made me dig through everything I have ever done and made me appreciate my own work. HRs were very helpful and the interviewers were very knowledgable, patient and helpful. Amazon wants only the best of the best. dont beat yourself up if you dont get it. Good luck!!

    Phone screen 1:
        Behavioral - Deep dive 1. Give me an example of when you used data to make a decision/solve a problem.?
                                2. Tell me about the most complex problem you’ve ever worked on.
        SQL - sql( tested join, group by having, where , pivoting in sql , sub query with agreegate)

    Phone screen 2:
        Behavioral - Deliver result 1. a time where you not only met a goal but considerably exceeded expectations.
                                    2. when you were able to deliver an important project under a tight deadline.
        What are the variables you would consider when you are going to predict demand for a product?

    Because of Corona the onsite interview was set up via Amazon chime. All in one day late march back to back with one 30 min break stay in well lit place and get a headphone with mic.

    Virtual onsite 1: with BIE
        SQL - tested on different join , group by having, where, aggregate and think about how you would find outliers) I did not do well in this one
        Behavioral - Customer Obsession
                        1. a time you obsessed over giving very high-quality service to a customer?
                        2. How did you figure out how your customers are unhappy and what did you do about it?
                 Have backboan -
                        1. when you took an unpopular stance in a meeting with peers and your leader and you were the outlier
                        2. When do you decide to go along with the group decision even if you disagree?

    Virtual onsite 2 : with BIE
        SQL - SQL ( tested on different join, group by, lead , lag , where , aggregate)
        Behavioral - Be curious
                        1. What’s the most innovative new idea that you have implemented?
                        2. What did you lean in the past years and how do you keep learning?
                    Invent and simplify
                        1. how did you solve a complex problem with simple fix 2.

    Virtual onsite 3: hiring manager
        Behavioral : Tell me about yourself 1. why this role 2. why amazon ?
                    Earn trust:
                        1. what was the critical piece of feedback you received?
                        2. when your decision was not liked by your team? what did you do about it?
                    ownership -
                        1. what did you do when you saw your team member was struggling?

    Vitual onsite 4: bar raiser. had lot more follow up questions. think about all the possible questions your story might invoke.
        Behavioral: Insist on highest standard:
                        1. you have been unsatisfied with the status quo. What did you do to change it? Were you successful?
                        2. time when you were dissatisfied with the quality of something at work and went out of your way to improve it.
                    Think big:
                        1. time you took a big risk and it failed. What did you learn? What would you do differently?
                        2. time you were working on an initiative or goal and saw an opportunity to do something much bigger than the initial focus.

    Virtual onsite 5: Data scientist
                Case: how would you find your demand going to be for a product when you dont have any history. what are the KPIs you would use to differentiate your product from your competitor. there was a campaign conducted by the marketing team and how would you find out if the campaign was successful?
                                1. Describe a situation where you made an important business decision without consulting your manager
                                2. a time when you took a calculated risk.
                             Have backboan
                                1. If your direct manager was instructing you to do something you disagreed with, how would you handle it?

    Interview Questions

    • probability of the product coming from location A is 0.8 and from location B is 0.6. What is the probability the customers will receive the product from location A or location B

      SQL - tested on different join , lead , lag, pivoting in sql , sub query, group by having, where, aggregate and think about how you would find outliers)   9 Answers

  9. Helpful (15)  

    Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 5 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon.

    Interview

    I gotta say I was surprised that Amazon of all places was a bad interview experience. I know a ton of people who work here (not in Recruiting,) and all have said they really like it. After going through the whole process, it's obvious the average and bad reviews for Recruitment are legit, Amazon is not for everyone. The last time I heard a statement like that was in staffing (an industry I have zero interest of going back into,) and that's exactly the vibe I got while interviewing here.

    Grand total of people I actually interviewed with was EIGHT, and that's not counting the additional Recruiter who gave me a ton of "prep" going into the final and two coordinators I also had to communicate with throughout the process. I'm sorry but if it takes that many people to coordinate and figure out if a Recruiter is a good fit for a company, then to me it is a major red flag and there's a lot of politics going on at this company.

    Amazon is not interested in how relevant your background in Recruitment might be and they won't make much of an effort to actually learn about your background either. In fact, the hiring manager even said he can teach someone to recruit on their stuff and I imagine that's their plan, no matter how you like to work, you're going to Recruit their way. It's all about their LP's. Their LP questions are total fluff, like questions you would ask a recent college graduate going for their first job. In their defense, you do get fair warning 85-90% of the interview is about these but wow what a dumb approach. I can only imagine how many rock solid recruiters have been skipped over, or candidates declined themselves.

    What it did was prove to me Amazon does not value Recruiters and just have them there because they need to have them. I mean in all fairness, they are Amazon so people are going to continue going to them whether Recruiters get them in or not.

    But I could forgive all that, if it's not a fit then it's not a fit. What really rubbed me the wrong way were several things:

    1. At the beginning of the process, I gave the first Recruiter my compensation requirements and she said ok. Going into the final, the Prep Recruiter told me how they really pay and I was not happy this wasn't disclosed up front. Plus they said we know you said want XYC but we don't think you're ready for something like that and if I got the job, would offer basically what I was already making and technically less after a couple of years, all for somewhat of a different role. I was laughing since I actually do way more than what the job requires and another sign of things that happen in staffing, basically sacrifice and put in the work today to be rewarded tomorrow kinda nonsense. Base pay is VERY LOW and you get some kind of monthly sign-on in your first 2 years. I got conflicting answers on how that sign-on is taxed as well. What they try to sell you on is the stock you also get in your package. But none of that is vested until after 4 years and even then you'd have to cash out to be rewarded. So another question I had was what happens in years 3 and 4 with no sign-on and I'm still at a very low base? All I got was another fluff response. There is no annual bonus or anything like that.

    2. My final was also screwed up. 4 hours, 1 hour sessions with each and I was supposed to get breaks in between each one going off my agenda. Turns out my agenda was changed without telling me (accidents happen but sucks for me regardless,) and since I was caught off guard, I'm sure it was noticeable.

    3. None of these guys are on the same page. 2 of the interviewers, in different sessions, asked me the same question of a sample string for a generic role. 1 of them (said,) they liked it while the other thought it was a bad approach to which I said a search string isn't etched in stone and you can always tweak it as needed. That one asked how I would know and I said a good seasoned recruiter will know right away if they're not seeing what they need to and adjust and you could tell they weren't sold on it. Why? That's how recruitment works and there isn't just one way to be successful.

    4. You won't get feedback from your final interview citing legal reasons. This is the first company I have ever heard of doing that in my career and really unacceptable. Anyone doing a final should ALWAYS get feedback but in Amazon's case, I put in a lot of my time not just interviewing for 5-6 hours but because of their process, prepped for several hours too. What was really funny though was they ask you for feedback on them and their process. And like a company that big is going to change anything based off feedback from me, especially after the staffing mentality approach I got.

    So to summarize everything, if you hate staffing then I'd stay away from here no matter how appealing things look on the surface.

    Interview Questions

    • Tell me about a time you did something without permission?

      Tell me about a time you had a disagreement with a peer?

      Tell me about a time you failed and what did you learn from that experience?

      Plenty of other entry level questions based off their LP's. They ask them like the questions above, they won't ask them like, "Give me an example of a time where you Took Ownership."   1 Answer

  10. Helpful (28)  

    IT Support Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at Amazon.

    Interview

    I'm still in the interview process, however you start off with the email and they ask you some questions, then you move on to the Hire Vue Assessment. It's done online, no personal interaction at all. Just a video of you and some questions. Now I'm waiting on the next step or to see if I passed the Hire Vue Assessment.

    Interview Questions

    • Linux questions: How is sudo different from Su? What is sudo and why would you use it?   1 Answer
    • What does the Time to live (TTL) variable do? ...   1 Answer
    • What is the farthest you have bent your standards in order to succeed? Describe a time when you took a big risk and it failed. What did you learn?   1 Answer
    • Name the Windows mechanism that would assign an IP address of 169.254.0.1 and explain why this is so   1 Answer
    • And What is the difference between broadcast and collision domain?   1 Answer
    • Give an example of when you failed a goal you had. Why did you fail?   1 Answer

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