Amazon Recruiter Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Amazon Recruiter Interview Questions

Updated Jun 13, 2017
159 Interview Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)  

    Senior Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA).

    Interview

    I walked in very well prepared - hard work on my end and preparation guidance from people that I knew in senior roles on the inside. Despite years of experience, no one asked about : where I had sourced people from in the past, tactics I used, former clients, references -typical recruiting questions. Instead, of course, it was questions that were completely unrelated to my experience from their internal list - which I was also prepared for (and had an internal employee send me ahead of time.)

    What I was NOT prepared for included: Late interviewers which threw the schedule off, mixed up schedules and room changes, and a general appearance of disorganization and chaos. Two of the senior leaders of the team told me they only took roles with the team because they relocated with their husbands and needed a job as part of the deal. One head of the group actually talked about how she didn't want to work for Amazon at all and they had to convince her to take this role (she didn't even call the recruiter back many times she said). Way to go on selling the team. The most disheartening one was a remote video call with someone who had no relevant experience (North Seattle Community college and previous experience hiring nurses at Swedish hospital) who was now working from home remotely from the East Coast and decided to do the video call in her kitchen with her husband walking around and doing things in the background. Distracting and so unprofessional.

    I didn't get the offer -a sigh of relief (but also confusion.) The role was for recruiting people with a certain type of advanced degree which I have from what is generally perceived as nation's #1 school (and a school that Amazon is targeting and apparently gets poor yield) - yet I was interviewed by people who didn't have that advanced degree and were so out of their league. It would be like me interviewing med school students for medical jobs - they'd know in a heartbeat I would know I had no idea what I was doing (and would bypass me for other knowledgeable people if they had any remaining interest in the company after a bad sales pitch by someone who had no clue.)

    My advice to the team - if hiring for a certain type of degree for the company, hire people with that degree for the team. Apparently, I wasn't smart enough but was smart enough to get in to one of those programs and bill millions a year in placements of those candidates in my ten year career.

    I had other options to earn more (which I happily now work in one) and I was hoping that Amazon would be a pleasant surprise and an option for a unique career change. I am happy to work in a place that rewards my skills, and pays significantly more than I would have earned....and also I don't have to work for people "who only took the job because they had to relocate for their husbands" and "had to be convinced to take the role."

    I was not surprised to later learn that the team was viewed as pretty inept by Amazon employees - I could have given feedback right in those interviews about why their yields are poor for recruiting.

    Interview Questions

    • Tell me when you had a piece of data, and chose a path but then came across another piece of data where you had to change your path?   2 Answers
    • Tell me about a time where you were wrong.   1 Answer

  2. Helpful (1)  

    Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Declined Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in May 2017.

    Interview

    Called a few days before hand to prep you for their interview process. Want you to respond in "STAR" format. All behavioral based questions - all very specific situations. I had four, one hour interviews, all back to back. Exhausting, seemed to ask a lot of the same questions.

    Interview Questions

    • Give an example of a time when you went along with a group decision even though you did not agree with it.   1 Answer

  3.  

    Recruiting Coordinator Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Declined Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a staffing agency. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in May 2017.

    Interview

    A pleasant experience. Scenario based questions. based around your work experience and how it applies to their leadership principles. The interviewers were well prepared with the questions they wanted to ask and instead of a stressful interview its seemed like a conversation.

    Interview Questions

    • A difficult situation, how did you handle and what was the outcome?   1 Answer

  4.  

    Recruiting Coordinator Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in April 2017.

    Interview

    Talking to four people in one day. Each conversation lasted for about 45 minutes. Intense and they really dive deep into your experience and skills to ensure that you are the right person for the role.

    Interview Questions

    • Do you have any questions for me?   1 Answer

  5. Helpful (2)  

    Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Accepted Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA).

    Interview

    I had 2 phone interviews and 1 onsite interview. The questions were fairly typical and nothing out of the ordinary. I wasn't too impressed with the process, as it seemed a bit unorganized with timing and feedback.

    Interview Questions

    • Tell me about a time where you worked with a difficult manager.   1 Answer

  6.  

    Senior Technical Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. I interviewed at Amazon.

    Interview

    The basics: salary, relocation, sourcing knowledge, boolean strings, a few gaps in resume (but nothing about exact technical knowledge nor process, nor strategy etc). The process there is phone screen, 2nd phone interview then in-person if it ever gets to that.

    Interview Questions

    • Really there wasn't much to the phone screen - he was bored or not happy with his job and did not have any experience really to understand my qualifications.

      He asked a few questions and because one doesn't know what will ever be asked in a phone interview, so where to focus, and I didn't have an answer off the top of my head doesn't mean I don't know over the course of my 16 year career.  
      2 Answers

  7. Helpful (3)  

    Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 1+ week. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA).

    Interview

    I concur with the other interview posts about the process being unprofessional, rude & waste of my valuable time. Amazon reached out to me to be considered for relocation to Seattle for a position. Two very disjointed phone screens and then passed along to another Sr. Recruiter to discuss a role on the same team. She acted completely put out that she had to interview me. 45 mins of discussing my background, agile talent acquisition strategy, metrix, on & on. Note, I have more experience than this person and she was condescending and very off putting. MY CHOICE is PASS!!!! Wouldn't want to work with this person. Too bad as Amazon needs to hire close to 100,000 more people & needs resources for the team to keep up with the robust hiring needs. ADVICE to Leadership -create a better candidate experience and do not let interviewers with a chip on their shoulder conduct interviews and make decisions to disposition.

    Interview Questions

    • STARS behavioral questions. The interviewer acted like she had something to prove to me and asked why I'm even applying. I was recruited by Amazon so act like a professional and not create such a poor candidate experience.   1 Answer

  8. Helpful (6)  

    Senior Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon in February 2017.

    Interview

    Was contacted by a senior manager for an interview. Initial interview was about 15 minutes and I was recommended to speak with a recruiter and then a recruiting manager. Three interviews later I was contacted by the recruiting coordinator to speak with another lead recruiter in Seattle. The phone interview was another 45 minutes and in addition to the dog barking in the background she left no time whatsoever to ask questions. She seemed ill prepared and bothered that she had to explain her position to me. I always thought highly of Amazon but this was a less than desirable experience. Not a very fair process when you aren't given an opportunity to ask questions and sell yourself.

    Interview Questions

    • Tell me about the hardest candidate you've ever had to recruit and why.   Answer Question

  9. Helpful (3)  

    Technical Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in February 2017.

    Interview

    The interview process consisted of one typical vetting call with a "qualifier"recruiter. I then had 30-45 minute calls with lead recruiters for all of the teams Amazon was considering me for (I think, see below). I was then sent a 20-30 minute online skills / personality assessment. I was invited in for an onsite interview and they have you fill out a detailed HR form about salary requirements and other questions that you've already been asked. The final step is to have an onsite interview with 6 separate interviewers. All of the questions are behavioral questions and they really drill you on them. Multiple follow up questions on each scenario you provide to them. I would say that I was asked on average 4 behavioral (tell me about a time that you....) questions per interviewer, so be prepared with 20-25 specific and unique situations that you can immediately reference and describe in detail.

    I was torn on whether to rate this as a neutral or a negative experience. Ultimately, though, there were more negative aspects than positive. The positive piece was that every person was actually nice and I genuinely enjoyed connecting with the folks who work at Amazon. However, each process-oriented piece of the interview provided such a poor candidate experience that it tarnished the whole thing. It's a small feat to make 5-6 hours of behavioral interview questions less than torture, but I wouldn't say that that means that Amazon provides a positive interview experience.

    HR was VERY clear that they would be unable to provide feedback for "compliance reasons". When a company has an interview process that requires that level of preparation and investment, candidates deserve feedback. As a recruiter, I don't believe that EVERY candidate deserves feedback (an online applicant deserves a simple rejection without feedback, there is only so much time in a day). However, if a candidate spends over half a business day onsite and is prompted to put a heavy level of preparation into the interview beforehand, we're talking about real time and real thought. Candidates deserve some sort of return on investment for that.

    I never got the sense that any of the interviewers cared about me as a professional or my goals. The first indicator is Amazon's policy not to provide final-round candidates with any feedback. Another was that throughout the whole process, I was thrown from team to team and it was never clear which team I was interviewing with and, more importantly, which role I was interviewing for. The job description that HR sent me before my onsite was for a totally different team and role than the teams that interviewed me on the day of the interview. To this day, I'm not even sure which role or team I was being considered for.

    Interview Questions

    • Every STAR behavioral questions you can find online, prepare a response for it. And also be ready to answer 2-4 follow up questions on each behavioral question. Early on in the process, they are very concerned with asking you about your metrics: I was asked metrics oriented questions on every phone interview.   Answer Question

  10. Helpful (3)  

    AWS Sourcing Recruiter Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in February 2017.

    Interview

    I had about 4 phone screens and 1 very long in-person interview in Seattle. I was told to dress business casual, but then I was told to wear jeans and layers due to cool temps in Seattle. Jeans are not business casual, so I am unsure if I was over dressed or under dressed. I've recruited for quite a few technology companies in the past. Some tech companies will rule people out for over dressing. I was told there would be dogs hanging around, because it is a benefit offered by the company. Sadly, I saw none while I was there. The building was dark and kind of dreary, but I was told they had just moved into the building a few weeks before. There were turnstiles that moved very slowly. The onsite is the most difficult part of the process, because it is non-stop behavioral based interview questions being fired off rapid-fire for 45 minutes at a time with 7 different people from 10 am to 2:45 pm. I felt some interviewers approached the process adversarially, but the beginning few seemed nice. I may have been starting to feel hangry/sleepy towards the end though. If you come over from the East Coast, your body will feel like it's three hours later. You end up getting up early and feeling like it's 5:45 instead of the 2:45 by their clocks. They escort you to the restroom and wait outside awkwardly. There is a lunch buddy that will be a little relief from the rapid fire that will buy you lunch. You are so excited that you are barely hungry though. By the end of the day, you question every answer you gave and try to think if the people you were speaking to understood the sometimes complex answer that might be required for "when you were unable to meet a commitment." There are lots of great reviews on here about the interview process that helped prepare me. I provided the interview question that made me the most uncomfortable and that kept getting asked by nearly all my interviewers. I would have rated this as a positive experience, except for the long behavioral individual interviews. I would think that Amazon could save a lot of time and maybe end up with a less exhausted candidate had they scheduled a 1-2 hour interview panel instead of 7 different people asking behavioral based interview questions for 45 minute stretches that require a person think of a simple situation to describe to each person asking similar questions. The thing about behavioral based interview questions is that you are not supposed to answer with what you "would do" or "should do." You are supposed to give a specific example. If you can't think of one, you might be ruled out as being inexperienced. If you give an example that the interviewer doesn't understand fully, you end up sounding defensive or negative as you explain why you didn't take a particular action. It stops being conversational after you answer that same question 3 times for three different people. The company has a commitment to giving a great candidate experience. The experience for me was great up until the exhausting nearly 5 hour interview. They have a commitment to giving an answer within 5 days of the interview. I received mine on the 7th day after 8 pm EST. I have gotten an offer for every position I have interviewed for in the past 10 years other than this one. They won't give any feedback due to "compliance reasons" and say that you might have great success if you apply again after 1-3 years. I understand the "not giving specific feedback" in a way. They are probably a target for lawsuits. However, during the interview process they tell you that they have a "certain culture." The culture I experienced reminded me of "Mean Girls." After interviewer #2, the body language was clear when they arrived in the room. They had their arms crossed and the computer blocking them the whole time. Then again, it could have been the fact that I was starving and sleep deprived by the end of the interview. They say the interview questions are based on their leadership principles. However, I really think I could have just gone through all of the typical behavioral based interview questions online rather than studying these principles. Focus on how to answer the behavioral based interviews for negative experiences (conflict, missed commitments, etc) so that you can come up with an example that is easy to explain and has the most positive outcome. I've been recruiting for about 19 years. I currently have a job that pays well and treats me reasonably well. I can say that in some respects, Amazon strives to be a leader in candidate experience. I believe they almost reach it until the last part of the process (the onsite interview). I might try again in a year, but if they are still doing the 5 hour interview, I will "pass". That part doesn't feel positive and reminds me of police interrogations that you see on 60 minutes or in "good cop/bad cop" tv shows. You will see lots of good tips on Glassdoor about the process and questions.

    Interview Questions

    • Give an example of a time when you didn't meet a commitment. Give an example of a time that you didn't meet a commitment to a team member. As I look back I feel like they only asked variations of this question. My boredom at answering this question surely came through, because a couple of my interviewers muffled yawns when I attempted to answer this question again. Because they all asked similar questions, I began to get confused about whether I had provided that particular example already. I even asked if I had told her about "that example" yet. I actually had a few dreams after the interview about the interview.   2 Answers

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