Amazon Lab126 Reviews

Updated September 22, 2014
Updated September 22, 2014
97 Reviews
2.9
97 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
(no image)
Jeff Bezos
14 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • The people are the best I've worked with and we've seen great products result from our combined efforts (in 5 reviews)

  • Innovative products, lots of freedom, good work life balance for the most part of the year (in 3 reviews)


Cons
  • No work/life balance, most people are married to their jobs and neglect their families (in 10 reviews)

  • Poor Management of tasks given to the developers (in 3 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Feels like a softer version of a startup. If you are young and wish to learn and grow, you will love the place.

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

    I worked at Amazon Lab126 as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    The systems engineering group has a lot of diverse experience. As an intern or fresh graduate, you will be able to soak in the approaches and knowledge while working on your project. The meetings and teams are well-structured, so that you get exposure to your "clients" within the company, and only few people will be required to attend those, so that they are well involved. The team is supportive and you won't feel much pressure for the deadlines. While the environment is not posh, it is enough to be productive, and there is a strong culture about sports and healthy habits.

    Cons

    The tasks will be open and not trivial. Although you don't need to work over hours much, the crunch time is not unusual. If at the interview you say you don't care much about what task you will be given, this is what you will get. You'll have to stand your ground on various issues. There are no massage cabinets in the office, and no beanbags ;)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great. Get to work on top notch technology. Ability to solve cool tech problems that be good for the career,

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer  in  Sunnyvale, CA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA

    I have been working at Amazon Lab126 full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Work with some of the smart folks in tech market.
    work on challenging problems
    reasonably sane work hours

    Cons

    Frugality
    No benefits compared to other silicon valley companies.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Less re-org and focus on employees to like customers.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 8 people found this helpful  

    Strangest Place I've Ever Worked

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer  in  Sunnyvale, CA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA

    I have been working at Amazon Lab126 full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    There are some very smart and capable people working here and the new products can be fun to work on.

    Cons

    Every week a large amount of time is spent running from fire to fire. Releases are not managed well, dates mean nothing and there is a lot of glossing over of issues in order to make an appearance.

    Too much emphasis is put on networking within the company and not enough on the quality of work. If you can get 25 people to give generic feedback on your review and not seven people with honest, quality feedback, you're more likely to get a raise. Raises are small - usually 1% or in the form of RSUs which can't be collected for two years.

    Hiring process purely depends on the manager of the group - Indian managers surround themselves with Indian employees, often brought in from India and on H1B. Asian managers do the same but not to such an extreme.

    There are a lot of politics - especially when it comes to management and the relationships between the groups in India, Seattle and California. India does what they want, when they want and usually cuts communication when questioned. Seattle only wants to hear the good, not the truth and is slowly moving projects to either Seattle or India.

    Definitely the strangest place I've ever worked - the large number of people leaving is pretty concerning.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Do some serious house cleaning and hire people who are honest and not into playing office politics.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  4. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5.  

    Great place to wrok

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Amazon Lab126 full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Lots of new technologies, great management team

    Cons

    Very Frugal, could provide better comp

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    ESPP

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 3 people found this helpful  

    Could be the best job I've ever had

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Operations  in  Sunnyvale, CA
    Current Employee - Operations in Sunnyvale, CA

    I have been working at Amazon Lab126 full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Open, transparent work environment.
    Fast pace, never a dull moment.
    Consumer electronic products are very cool.
    Great people on my team, some of the guys in Engineering are top notch.
    Operations has a big say in decisions, not just Engineering; company has a more balanced approach.
    Amazon has a culture where it feels "safe" to try new things.
    At a certain leadership level in the company, everybody spends a day at customer service call center and 3 days at an Amazon fulfillment center; it reinforces the company wide obsession with customers and with the origin of the company selling books on the internet out of Jeff Bezos' garage.
    Company is growing fast and opportunities for leadership abound.
    The hiring process is very well organized and structured. It seems to work well based on the quality of people here.
    On the other hand, Lab126 doesn't have a whole lot of business processes, so you have a certain degree of freedom in how you choose to go about your work.

    Cons

    Company is a bit too frugal in some areas; my pet peeve is reimbursement for my China phone pre-pay SIM card; they will NOT reimburse for this even though it's practically a necessity to have your own Chinese phone number when you are there 90 days a year so people can get hold of you.
    Even though we have frequent travel to China, Amazon pays for Economy tickets only.
    I like to travel, but at certain points in the year, it could be 40% depending on you you measure it. Average per year for me is 25%. Not for everyone.
    Long hours. Company has flexibility, but you also have to be flexible, especially with travel to China since we do our manufacturing over there.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep the work place open and transparent. Do not allow people to have "hidden agendas", in contrast to many other place I've worked in the past.
    Reconsider the travel policy. If someone is traveling to Asia more than 2-3 times/year put them in Business class.
    Calling a China pre-pay SIM card expense "International Roaming" and not reimbursing is ridiculous. We are talking about $32 USD for a two-week trip to China. If it was $1000 USD, I would understand, but let's be reasonable.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    "Its OK"

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Amazon Lab126 full-time

    Pros

    A great place to grow your career. You will learn and lot and build great things. You'd be working with talented, smart engineers.

    Cons

    Benefits are not as good. Lot of politics.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Management needs to treat their employees better. I am not impressed by the facilities, employee perks. Other companies pay better, so you'd be losing employees soon.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 11 people found this helpful  

    Glad I am an ex-employee

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

    I worked at Amazon Lab126 full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Good starting compensation package.

    Cons

    There is little chance of advancement and almost now possibility of getting a raise after you join the company. Management by anger and intimidation is the rule. They like to keep you in a constant state of stress. They promise you lots when you're hired but almost none is ever delivered. Teams are reorged almost constantly and within a few months you'll be doing a very different job from what you were hired for.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    not really worth the effort as they don't listen to the staff they have.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Lab126 or Lab-Inhumane. What an unprofessional sweatshop with no innovation in product development.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Product Design Engineer  in  Sunnyvale, CA
    Former Employee - Product Design Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA

    I worked at Amazon Lab126 full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Tried to look for something positive for this section, but found nothing. Wait, the only good thing was to have an opportunity to earn bread and butter to make ends meet for a while. The bread earning experience also caused me subsequent heart problems due to the stress caused by managements.

    Cons

    A very inhumane company. The managers in Lab126 also came from other companies around the valley. They will bad mouth about you during reference check if you are unfortunate enough to apply for another company whose hiring manager knows your current manager at Lab126. You will find out quickly after making through the phone screen and moving to the in-person interview stage at the new company, which never happens because of apparent reasons. If Lab126 management hates you, you may as well go and jump off the Golden Gate bridge because your career is pretty much ruined. The Human Resources department at Lab126 is not there to ensure a harmonious working environment where everybody plays by the rules. They are there to protect the managers only. So, try to work there and you'll see what I mean.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Look at Alibaba. It's only the matter of time before Amazon will pull the plug on you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    Recruiting is amazing at Amazon lab126

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Technical Recruiter  in  Sunnyvale, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Technical Recruiter in Sunnyvale, CA

    I have been working at Amazon Lab126 full-time

    Pros

    - ownership
    - working closely with client groups
    - flexibility
    - no micro management

    Cons

    - Req. load, at times can be large

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Help your team of recruiters to find growth opportunities.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    lots of fun

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Product Design Engineer  in  Sunnyvale, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Product Design Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA

    I have been working at Amazon Lab126 full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Good salary. Challenging job description. Get to work with a lot of good engineers. They allow me to push the bounds of what has been done and create new technology.

    Cons

    They take product confidentiality / security way too seriously - to the point where it gets in the way and may cause redundant work in different departments.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

Worked for Amazon Lab126? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.