Amazon.com
3.4 of 5 2,796 reviews
www.amazon.com Seattle, WA 5000+ Employees

Amazon.com software engineer Reviews

Updated Apr 9, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.5 616 reviews

                             

88% Approve of the CEO

Amazon.com Chairman, President, and CEO Jeff Bezos

Jeff Bezos

(492 ratings)

69% of employees recommend this company to a friend
616 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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NA

Software Development Engineer (Current Employee)
Seattle, WA

I have been working at Amazon.com as an intern for more than a year

ProsLots to learn, Good Work

ConsWork Culture not that good

Advice to Senior ManagementNA

– I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Fast Paced, Technically Challenging, very Rewarding

Software Engineer (Former Employee)
Seattle, WA

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

Pros- Many opportunities
- Productivity is embraced
- Agile processes carefully guide each project to measurable success

Cons- Be prepared for your manager to use your peers to keep you in check
- Everyone is brilliant so the least productive discussions are usually a mexican standoff of everybody being right

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Fast-Paced, Exhilarating, Customer-Focused, Neurotic Beast

Senior Software Engineer (Current Employee)
Bangalore (India)

I have been working at Amazon.com full-time for more than 8 years

ProsAmazon is one of those places where execution on business centric goals is valued above all else. These goals are driven by the benefit that they drive to customers. Watching how your work impacts millions of customers is a tremendous ego boost.

The culture and the formula for success and growth in the organization is very well etched out in crisply defined leadership principals.

ConsEngineers are expected to maintain and manage their live systems which can be a frustrating at times. The work load itself can get overwhelming and I have seen people get burnt out quickly.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Long hours and chaotic planning

Software Development Engineer (Current Employee)
Seattle, WA

I have been working at Amazon.com full-time for more than a year

Pros- Get to work with smart people
- Company is loved by customers and its products are used by millions

Cons- Expectations to work long hours and weekends
- Constantly shifting deadlines make it difficult to stay on top of your responsibilities
- High turnover makes it difficult to form good relationships with colleagues

Advice to Senior ManagementMore structured planning and fewer randomizing demands from senior management would make the engineering organization more effective.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Amazing work place, great job.

Software Engineer (Current Employee)
Atlanta, GA

I have been working at Amazon.com full-time for more than 3 years

ProsYou have lots of great coworkers. The pay is nice. You get to learn a lot. Amazon is a good company to work for. You get to meet a lot of great, intelligent people. While the job is stressful, it's worth it.

ConsSometimes long, unpredictable hours. Sometimes hard to balance family/friends with work. Prioritizing what is most important to me. Coworkers can be stubborn at times, but only because everyone is intelligent and thinks in different ways.

– I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Software Engineer

Software Engineer (Former Employee)
Seattle, WA

I worked at Amazon.com full-time for less than a year

ProsGreat overall experience. Was able to work with very smart poeple

ConsWorked long hours. Overtime was a must

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Employees not treated like customers

Software Development Engineer (Former Employee)
Seattle, WA

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

Pros+ "Customer centric" is an understatement
+ Innovation (AWS, Kindle, Instant Video, etc...)
+ Freedom to move around and work for various teams and organizations
+ Amazing development, build, and deployment tools.
+ Countless new projects and the freedom to make a huge impact.
+ Smart people

Cons- Employees are not treated as well as customers.
- Horrible IC promotion process - getting promoted is a joke, especially for individual contributors at higher levels. Talent is just a minor factor. At most 20% is within your control, the rest is pretty much random luck: is your manager willing to do the hard work, is your manager experienced enough to get you promoted, is anyone else getting promoted on your team? does your organization promote engineers regularly? who do you know? who does your manager know? did you have more than one manager during the last review cycle? did you your team go through a re-org? was the project you worked on this review period "visible" enough? The company is shooting itself in the foot by not fixing this problem.
- Pager duty. Depending on the team you're on, this can have a very negative impact on your work-life balance. Your overall comp should be at least 20% higher than elsewhere to make up for oncall rotations, crazy load, unrealistic expectations, and at times brutal and uncaring management.
- "Frugal" is a euphemism for cheap. It's way overdone.

Advice to Senior ManagementTreat employees like customers. Fix the promotion process.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Company has a drive for excellence but lacks proper means to excel.

Software Development Engineer (Former Employee)
Bangalore (India)

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

Pros- Smart people around , so very competitive environment.
- Instills values which they call "Leadership Principles" there are 14 of them and they try to hinge the company on those principles and those principles if adhered to focuses most on Customer-centricity and satisfaction , hence the company will keep doing well.
- They make you feel special and instills a sense of pride for working in amazon.
- Last but not the least very flexible process of migrating to US. Entry in Amazon for a good candidate is nowadays equivalent to visa to US with an excellent on-board compensation.

Cons- Company is not at all sorry to screw people's work-life balance for itself to excel.
- Worse is , the management thinks, its great to overwork people because they should be obsessed with their work just like scientists. Their tagline for employees is "Work hard, Have fun( by working hard) , Make history (by screwing your life)".
- Takes pride in scaring people of throwing them away of job and in return make them work hard.
- Wants innovation but that should come as an additional achievement. There is not much lee-way given the employee to do innovation like time,resource , encouragement etc...
- Last but not the least , they will try to take advantage of a candidate who is less demanding in compensation when joining. Once the employee realizes that he is paid less then peers , the employee will have live with and will never be able to catch up.

Advice to Senior ManagementIts the employees who are make a knowledge-base company unlike brick and mortar company. The real assets are its employees. Hence, try to understand why turn-over ratio of Amazon is so high and address that. Unless you do that you will always play a catch-up game with Google , Apple etc..and will never be able to reach the revenue and profit levels of those companies.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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More of operational work for SDEs

Software Design Engineer (Current Employee)
Bangalore (India)

I have been working at Amazon.com full-time for more than a year

Pros1. Exposure to E-commerce business, high scale applications and AWS technology(If most of the things are already built in your team, you may just get awareness of how the systems are working but no real hands on. New systems are mostly developed by senior members of the team)
2. Leadership principles which you can apply at any other workplace.

Cons1. No work life balance...Heavily stretched work hours even if you are not oncall. It's common for a manager to come to you at 6pm and asking you to complete a task by EOD,
2. Oncall - Need to be on support for a whole week(rotated among team members)..For high severity issues your availability is expected 24x7. You may have to wake up at midnight to check why a host is down.
3.You may spend more time into operations and understanding amazon business. I wonder if 10% of a SDE time really goes into coding/designing..
4.. Everyone- SDEs/Managers/Ops team have work pressure..Even a coolest manager may yell at you..
5. Frugality - workplaces are crowded..it's disturbing at times when some SDEs do louder conversation to make whole floor listen about the cool thing they are talking about..Need to open a ticket even to get a water bottle. ..No admin/supporting team for employees..If you had worked at some other company you will find it strange that to get a HR address proof letter you need to prepare it yourself, take a print and go to HR for a signature..
6. No performance bonus. Also one would not get any additional stock award in the first 2 years.

Advice to Senior ManagementRealize the importance of work life balance..

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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High-tech company

Software Engineer (Former Employee)
Seattle, WA

I worked at Amazon.com as an intern for less than a year

ProsCompetitive environment, strong teamwork
The company structure is fairly organized
People are helpful

ConsCold on-call mechanism.
Managers hate hand-holding process.
Employees feel they are replaceable.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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