Amazon Senior Engineer Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Amazon Senior Engineer Interview Questions

Updated May 19, 2017
201 Interview Reviews

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  1.  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Interview

    I was given an online coding assessment. I ran into many technical difficulties, such as not being able to compile even a simple line of code and missing problem description. I asked Amazon for a retake, but they didn't even have the courtesy to respond.


  2. Helpful (1)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in March 2017.

    Interview

    Interview process was first technical interview, where a very low-experinced employee interviewed me on problem solving and solution thinking for 45 minutes. It included using the interactive whiteboard to discuss problems and do just a little simple coding for partial solutions (the problems were too big to solve in a few minutes in an accurate and tested manner).

    The issue I have with this process is that it is NOT a reasonable assessment of a senior candidate's experience and skills. When a 5 years or less 'person' interviews a very successful senior engineer with well over 20 years of real world experience, and then does not recommend further interest in the candidate due to lack of skills, well, something is wrong with the system! People think of solutions in different ways, and working together to collaborate on a best solution is what good engineering is about. A barely-out-of-being-junior engineer cannot come close to understanding what that is like in the world outside of Amazon.
    I would not work with such a person, even if they had made an offer.

    Interview Questions

    • Something about searching a string for sequences of characters and counts of them.   3 Answers

  3.  

    Senior Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Jose, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 5 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (San Jose, CA) in March 2017.

    Interview

    It was a 5 rounds of behavioral, Coding and System design question.
    Learn their Leadership skills, in every round, they ask you a question related to it, and spend about 20 mins deep diving into it!
    Interview as such was straight forward DS & Algos but these leadership skills play a vital role in selection

    Interview Questions

    • 1) About 8 different questions from Leadership skills   2 Answers
    • Design Question: Design Google docs   1 Answer
    • Coding: Binary Tree "expression" parser   Answer Question
    • HashMaps & Priority Queues based: How to retrieve recent 5 queries that was searched on AWS dashboard   1 Answer

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  5. Helpful (2)  

    Senior Software Development Engineer Interview

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

    Application

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

    Interview

    Attended many interviews by many companies. Amazon pride themselves with whole bunch of leadership principles and how they religiously follow them and expect those principles from interviewees. However, they lack that professionalism in extending basic courtesy to interviewees in letting them informed on the outcome of the interview. Be it negative or positive, they oughta convey it - because its Amazon!

    It started with a phone screen: half of time, on technical aspects of the resume or general concepts and other half with a collaborative coding question, which I cleared it.

    Though the position is near to where I live, they asked me to fly to Seattle - paid everything by Amazon. Six interviews during the day - one hour each.

    First interview was a coding question which I answered listing various trade-offs with each approach. We both agreed which is the right approach for the question and I went writing the code on white board. Then interviewer asked me algo for the other approaches, which I did. He then asked for a design question, it was very nice discussion, I did describe to the interviewer's satisfaction.

    Second interview was from a hardware engineer; he was nice. Asked me to explain couple of projects that I worked and he genuinely tried to understand. Then he asked me a design question in the hardware domain - again, invigorating discussion. He was happy with my answer.

    Third was with two engineers, they pretty much asked behavioral questions. Again, great discussion!

    Fourth was lunch outing with the engineer who I spoke during the phone screen. It was my chance to ask questions about the work culture and the company.

    Fifth was I think is bar raiser interview: its pure coding. First question, I aced it. He asked for an alternative approach even though it would not fetch any performance or memory improvements from the algorithm I used. The approach he wanted was skewed, I could not answer it; I gave up.
    He then asked for a question on trees. It was a difficult question; I came close with an approach; he helped with clues and finally I was able to answer it.

    The last was with hiring manager - full of behavioral questions. He was under the impression that the interview was for 45 minutes so, he rushed through with his questions; and winded up fast. Then, came back after realizing that he has fifteen more minutes, for the next fifteen minutes, we just chatted around. I think this may have contributed to outcome.

    The last was with HR/recruiter. She said she would get back to me with a decision EITHER Positive or negative by Monday or Tuesday (interview happened on Friday). She pretty much talked about ball park salary, possible positions! I thought I had it.

    Its end of Friday, I have not heard back from them. Sent a mail to the recruiter, no response! Guess they doesnt want to move forward with me. Fine!

    But, when they were so fanatic about leadership principles, they should stick to word given to interviewees which they didnt. Interviewers were very helpful, I really enjoyed the discussions but when they dont follow what they promised, I lose the respect.

    Interview Questions

    • Signed NDA so not appropriate to share. You gotta know your basics to succeed.   Answer Question

  6. Helpful (2)  

    Senior Software Development Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 1+ week. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in February 2017.

    Interview

    This was a technical screen over the phone with use of Amazon's whiteboard web app.
    Started out asking me for a brief history of my career in the software industry. Then he asked me to describe a goal I've had and how I achieved it. We talked about that for a few minutes and then moved on to a theoretical technical question (no code, just verbal discussion). The final ~20 minutes were spent on the coding exercise.

    Interview Questions

    • You have a huge data file (gigabytes in size) full of URLs, one per line. There are many duplicates throughout the file. How would you process this data to produce an output file with one unique URL per line, followed by the number of occurrences?   1 Answer
    • Write a function/method with this signature:
      bool MyFunc(string term, string input) {}

      The method should return true if the search term is found in the input string, even when there are other characters in between.
      Examples:
      "aba", "bbbbabbxxxxxxbb" returns false
      "aba", "bbbbabbxxxxxxab" returns true
      Basically, do I see an 'a', then 'b', then another 'a' before I run off the end of the input string?  
      2 Answers

  7.  

    Senior QA Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Boston, MA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 1 day. I interviewed at Amazon (Boston, MA) in February 2017.

    Interview

    It was a pleasant experience. It was a phone interview with questions on QA engineer, SQL queries and along with CollabEdit for testing programming skills. We could choose programming language

    Interview Questions

    • 1. Write a routine to parse a log file
      2. Positive, Negative and Boundary value analysis with example
      3. SQL questions - Having clause, Aggregate functions etc  
      1 Answer

  8.  

    Senior AI Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Irvine, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (Irvine, CA) in February 2017.

    Interview

    They did not hire be because I was a Disabled Vet. When I asked for special help because of my disability they told me they were dropping me as an applicant. If would name they directly but glass door will not let me. It was the most offend I have ever been and made me feel ashamed to be a disabled vet.

    Interview Questions

    • Why do you think we should help you just because choose to join the military.   2 Answers

  9.  

    Senior Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Raleigh, NC
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (Raleigh, NC) in January 2017.

    Interview

    I was contacted by Amazon recruiter, phone interview and then I was introduced to another senior recruiter.
    It was really a good experience with recruiter, she told me some tips about the interview and provide me preparation document.
    Then setup a 30 minute technical phone with a Sr developer.

    Interview Questions


  10.  

    Senior Engineering Manager Interview

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

    Application

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

    Interview

    It took 2 months for the entire process starting phone screen to interview. Very slow in scheduling. Onsite interview was good. Got to meet 6 people and enjoyed the conversation. Even though i felt that i did extremely well, I didn't get the offer and the worst part is that there is no feedback. It felt like waste of time for everyone.

    Interview Questions

    • Most of the questions were behavioral and some questions on the architecture and design.   Answer Question

  11. Helpful (1)  

    Senior Software Engineer Interview

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

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in December 2016.

    Interview

    TL;DR: The interview process at Amazon is broken. Amazon favors those who are experts at interviewing and show aptitude for solving puzzle problems under pressure, on a white board and in an academic way under time constraints. The interview is structured in a way that completely obfuscates and diminishes real-world, pragmatic experience acquired over the years of writing software and focuses on how well you payed attention in class. It's a kin to a trauma surgeon with 15 years of battlefield experience being judged solely on how well he or she can suture a small cut on a pinky finger.

    The interview process started with a recruiter organizing a technical phone screen with a simple coding question much like every other company. The phone screen was easily passed and did not present much of a challenge.

    The next step was to interview all day on site with several individuals some of which were by remote video conference. Many of interviewers were from teams other than the team I was interviewing for and it was evident by their demeanor. They seemed to have been required to perform the interview and did not seem overly interested in the outcome. The words "robotic" and "forced" comes to mind when describing the interviewers.

    On a side note, you can easily infer the outcome of the interview by taking note of the recruiters attentiveness to you before and after the interview. In my case, the recruiter was responsive to my inquires and questions, answered the phone and went out of her way to be available to me before the interview. After the interview had taken place, she was unavailable and would not return calls as promptly thus indicating a negative outcome. If there is a rejection, you are dead wood to the recruiter who does not wish to waste precious time with you anymore.

    Interview Questions

    • Expect puzzle questions, some of which are found online. Amazon interviewers lack the brilliance to come up with anything unique or representative of real-world applications. Amazon! The 1990's called; they want their soft skill questions back!   1 Answer

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