Amazon.com

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17 people found this helpful  

Slave ship of infinite sadness

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

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

Pros

One thing you can count on is that your coworkers will be very intelligent people. The culture encourages being objective, courteous, and precise. This goes a long way in making the day-to-day challenges seem solvable. Where some companies are "too big to change," Amazon is constantly adapting to new knowledge and is improvising its strategies. Jeff is an awesome CEO. He truly propagates his influence through every aspect of the business and he has a sharp eye for quality.

Cons

Morale is dismal. Amazon does not integrate people - it consumes people. You will be worked to death, and mostly because the "development tools" need you more than you need them. From the outside, and while interviewing, you will hear a lot about how Amazon prides itself in intelligent design and has the highest standards for software engineering. Once you get on the inside though, everything is a hasty, hacky, brute-force solution, built on a long history of such solutions. The result is that there are tools out the wazoo - tools for everything, hundreds of them. The ultimate outcome is that you will spend about 80% of your Amazon career trying to find your dependencies, trying to find documentation, and then writing new tools to make your tools work. What Microsoft solved for by creating Visual Studio and the .NET framework, Amazon solves for by asking you to work until your eyes bleed.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Don't leave it to your employees to report anything to you that they won't be rewarded for. Take the initiative of keeping your team communicating at a high level of trust. Design "yes" and "no" answers out of your team conversations. Unless questions are extremely precise, "yes" and "no" cater to assumptions, misunderstanding, and misguided politics. Where there is clarity, there will be morale, and morale will deliver the results that you really want.

Recommends
Positive Outlook
Approves of CEO

3938 Other Employee Reviews for Amazon.com (View Most Recent)

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Rewarding work for a great company. They need to focus on employees for next stage of growth.

    • 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

    Pros

    Lots of ownership in work product
    Restricted stock units
    Lots of autonomy

    Cons

    Can be very competitive
    Not a lot of training or feedback.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Help people to grow in their jobs. Promote from within.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 19 people found this helpful  

    Pure misery - much worse being an associate at a law firm

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Corporate Counsel in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Corporate Counsel in Seattle, WA

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

    Pros

    Very competitive salary for Seattle market

    Cons

    - Workload and work/life balance (was even worse than being at a big law firm)
    - Inadequate training
    - Uninteresting work (get ready to spend your days writing disclaimers)
    - Few perks
    - Unsupportive environment with virtually no secretarial or paralegal support
    - Cramped, noisy and dark offices
    - Endless goal setting and review processes that keep you from doing your work
    - Dishonest personnel misrepresented the nature of the job and the benefit/compensation packages I would be given during the interview process
    - Only 2 weeks paid vacation per year during first 2 years of employment
    - Dogs all over the office - if you don't like hearing/seeing/smelling other people's dogs all day, you'll be miserable

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If they have any interest in retaining talent, they should try to improve training and support, improve work/life balance, streamline the endless cycle of goal-setting and reviews and generally encourage an environment of teamwork and mutual support. Backbiting and dishonesty pervades throughout the legal department, beginning during interview process and lasting past when I gave notice. It surely is costly to have a revolving door of a legal department, but virtually everybody I know there left, or intends to leave, at the first opportunity.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
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