Amazon.com Interview Questions

Updated Oct 28, 2014
Updated Oct 28, 2014
1,545 Interview Reviews

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  1. 237 people found this helpful  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through other source. The process took 4+ monthsinterviewed at Amazon.com in May 2013.

    Interview Details

    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 Details
    As a recent grad, there wasn't much room for negotiation.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2. 120 people found this helpful  

    Area Manager Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Amazon.com in January 2014.

    Interview Details

    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
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3.  

    Operations Manager (Pathways for MBAs) Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university – interviewed at Amazon.com.

    Interview Details

    There were 2 Rounds, both on campus. Round 1 was 2 interviews 30 mins each and Round 2 was 2 interviews 45 mins each. The interviews were only behavioral and the interviewers had set questions that they will ask to evaluate you. Prepare good stories for times when you used data to prove something or when you had conflicts in your previous job or internship. This job is a combination of both- data analysis+people management so be sure to showcase your strengths in both these areas.

    Interview Questions
    • Questions are not difficult but they would ask for details so be prepared to know your stories very well.   Answer Question
    Declined Offer
    Easy Interview
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  5.  

    Systems Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at Amazon.com.

    Interview Details

    2-3 phone screens, one grueling all day rotation designed to push you into areas you know nothing about. Interviewers, when asked whether or not they liked their jobs, they could not honestly say yes. Asked fermi questions, jogged to lunch (YES, REALLY). Ignored most of what I told them about myself.

      The engineers who interviewed me were not trained in how to interview - they repeated questions, were dismissive, abusive, and generally irritated that they had to interview me. They were not comfortable hearing "I don't know" and insisted on pressing issues until I was frustrated. I don't know if this is an effective interview technique, but it was certainly an effective way for me to screen a prospective employer!

    Interview Questions
    • How many golf balls fit in a schoolbus?   View Answer
    Reasons for Declining

    Sub-par salary, and the interviewers seemed to hate their jobs.

    Declined Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  6.  

    Solutions Architect- Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    HR phone screen which includes questions from the other reviews/posts. 99% from those questions. After that phone screens by solutions architects, the number of interviews will depend on number of positions to be filled. Next will be on site interview. The number of interviews again depend on team size or requirements. Questions asked on phone interviews or onsite will not always be the same. The interviewers are awesome at asking questions on the fly. My suggestion would be to learn all the aws services, reference architectures, white papers, getting hands-on of all the services, knowing the networking and working of the internet fundamentals starting from DNS, knowing the mapping of on premise infrastructure to aws infrastructure etc., There is no set of questions or one way to study. Good luck!

    Interview Questions
    Declined Offer
    Difficult Interview
  7.  

    Finance Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Very technical questions largely focused on how to explain different financial contacts to different groups. They also asked a specific questions about whether or not to take a discount on a product. They also asked a few different behavioral questions before allowing me to ask questions. The interview went 45 minutes in total. They were very easy to talk to and get along with.

    Interview Questions
    • How would you explain econometrics to a computer programer vs. an accountant.
      Tell us about a time when you went against what your supervisor said.
        Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
  8.  

    Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took a weekinterviewed at Amazon.com.

    Interview Details

    Attended a hiring event on site. Was interning at another tech company and responded to an email mass mailed to my university regarding the event. Was flown out on their dime within a week. There were 4 separate interviews with one conducted by two engineers and another by an engineer and a manager. The interview was very simple and easy and left me expecting another round of interviews, but I received an offer within a week. I shared a cab with 3 other interviewees and they too were shocked by the basic interview questions. One was even very upset about the thought of another round of interviews given that he had a pending offer deadline. Everyone was very friendly though and it seems like a great place to work.

    Interview Questions
    • Very simple and common interview questions. They should not have been able to differentiate candidates with at least basic competency. This is probably due to the hiring event. They were interviewing dozens of candidates onsite every week.   Answer Question
    Reasons for Declining

    Salary compared to other offers.

    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  9.  

    Process Assistant Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 1+ weekinterviewed at Amazon.com.

    Interview Details

    Expect lots of behavioral, a few math, and excel questions. Interview with at least two managers and human resource presence. Possible role play to gauge personality and communication ability. Be detailed and exact. Choose genuine situations to talk to.

    Interview Questions
    • Tell me about a time you where unable to meet expectation and how you've overcome the situation?   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
  10.  

    Cloud Support Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Amazon.com.

    Interview Details

    Had a couple technical phone screens with current engineers, and then I was invited for a day of on-site interviews. The phone screens were covering pretty basic technical areas based on my previous experience. The engineer was very pleasant. He asked about FSMO roles in Active Directory, what are the aspects of setting up a VPN connection between two sites, what all happens when www.amazon.com is typed into a browser, and some basic firewall questions.

    On-site, I met with a couple engineers, and several managers. These were a mix of technical questions (describe how you'd set up a network with three locations, what is a GPO and how is it applied in AD, etc) and soft questions (Tell me about a time when doing things the normal way didn't work, Tell me about a time you came up against a problem you'd never seen before, etc).

    I thought the process was very thorough, but I never felt like I was being grilled. The people were all great.

    Interview Questions
    • If you were interviewing you, what are the three questions you would be asking?   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  11.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    2 back-to-back phone interviews, each interviews are for 45 minutes. After that, it took me 2 weeks to wait for the results. After I sent an email to ask for the result, the HR sent me the offer. Or I don't know how long would it take to wait.

    Interview Questions
    • design the auto-complete function in the search bar.   View Answer
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

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