Amazon Solutions Architect Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Amazon Solutions Architect Interview Questions

Interviews at Amazon

137 Interview Reviews

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Helpful (41)  

Solution Architect Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate
No Offer
Negative Experience
Average Interview

Application

I applied online. The process took 6 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon.

Interview

The recruitment process is poorly managed. The recruiter might as well be a machine, Only email communications based on standard templates, The only modification they have to do is date and time. Nobody explains the process.

Interview Questions

  • The interviewers have great talent in asking you questions outside your resume and skill sets. It is easy to identify the interviewers background. The questions they ask are around their own skill sets/background and not on the candidates profile or experience. If you want to ask hypothetical questions, you might as well ask random questions around Rocket science or Medicine.   1 Answer

Other Interview Reviews for Amazon

  1. Helpful (22)  

    Solution Architect Interview

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

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in November 2014.

    Interview

    Read many posts of the AWS process and this was inline with others experiences. First I was contacted by an AWS talent recruiter then did two telephone interviews. Finally brought to Seattle for the AWS Loop. The entire process took a 80 days. The AWS recruiting team was very professional and timely with travel, etc.

    After the loop I was not sure sure how well I fared. I was NOT challenged by technical questions which I expected. Out of six interviewers 3 asked the same question. Its was like being asked the same question 3 times in an interview which seemed like a waste of time. Its a long process. When the Loop starts at 8 am it goes all the way to 1pm non stop.

    Within 4 business days I was informed they would not move forward with an offer which was disappointing. In hindsight I did not sell my self enough. They was to hear you build yourself up like you are god's gift to man. So lay it on thick and don't hold back. For some this is easy, for me its not my style I have to train for it. I feel they missed the mark with me. I would have fit in there very well. Maybe next time.

    Interview Questions

    • Tell me about something you built that was all your own?

      Hardest technical questions were: whats a router, load balancing and some DNS stuff specific to AWS.

      Some questions about describing yourself as a slogan.

      A few questions on my current AWS deployment. My recommendation is to make it sound like you did everything AWS style regardless if it actual is a good fit you the reality of your deployment. Not everyone runs Wordpress or LAMP.

      Good luck!   Answer Question

  2. Helpful (36)  

    Solution Architect Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon.

    Interview

    As described in previous comments, AWS' interview process is a combination of technical phone screenings and a final onsite interview with 5-6 people from different areas, general presentation, and a whiteboarding session. As per NDA I signed, I can't list questions asked, but I'd recommend going over Storage, Security, Virtualization, Network, etc. 101s.

    In my opinion their process (for this SA role) is seriously flawed. Instead of conducting evaluations of real world Cloud/IT design scenarios, having sessions with existing AWS architects looking at common customer challenges/requirements and measuring how the candidates respond and deliver technical thought process and engineering, having NATURAL conversations with sales team members and SA managers to validate that the candidate has the personal, business, and soft skills and abilities, AWS conducts a very dreadful process of asking a bunch of behavioral questions whose responses are captured subjectively by people along the process. You'd seat with 5-6 people that final (onsite) day, and one by one in a production line fashion, they’d bring a list of situational/behavioral questions and would ask non-stop about 40-50 of these in a 5-6 hour timeframe. Even the lunch is an interview. At the end, when you're exhausted of talking and trying to recall past experiences to answer (genuinely) to these questions, wondering if it’s worth going through this lengthy process, you have the interview with the hiring manager asking 40% of previous questions with your brain at 50% of capacity.

    They highly regard their leadership principles, but when you'd ask them why the work for AWS and examples of how they deliver in such principles you get bogus and empty answers. AWS is a great technology company no doubt, but trying to find the best talent shouldn’t need such senseless interview process. They need to have real conversations; real evaluations putting people to the test in both technical and personal abilities, using a different approach than 50 scripted questions that are written down in paper (subjectively) by random people. What this does, is that great candidates with talent that are focused on delivering success to customers and AWS aren’t selected due to any misperception by any interviewer or for the candidate maybe not providing the best answer trying to remember a situation that happened months or years ago (trying to respond honestly) and less stellar candidates that are proficient in making stuff up on the fly are chosen and then need to leave the company soon due to poor results adding to AWS’ high turnover statistics. Which is interesting, if the fact that a great deal of people don’t spend more than 3 years with AWS is related to flaws not detected in the interview process, or just people disappointed about what they discovered once inside.

    My 2 cents. AWS, please fix your process. Talented candidates out there, have a real expectation before applying to AWS.

    Interview Questions

    • I signed an NDA. If you're applying to work for a any large technology company, you should be able to answer at least 90% of the multi-domain technical questions. The 40-50 behavioral questions is what you have to try to be prepared for.   1 Answer
  3. Helpful (9)  

    Solution Architect Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Herndon, VA
    Declined Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (Herndon, VA) in May 2015.

    Interview

    The entire interview process seems to be designed to be mysterious. You're never quite sure who you're talking to, what their role/influence in the organization is, but you can be sure they are meticulously recording everything you say from their bank of interview questions. Expect it to feel very off-putting that no one seems capable of looking up from their laptops to make eye contact during face-to-face interviews. Expect very few interviewers to be considerate enough to allow you to ask your questions - time will end and it's on to the next automaton. At the end, they get together to drink Kool-Aid and debate all the data they've recorded about you to see if you're worthy enough.

    The other feedback on here relative to the fact that they operate more like a cult is accurate. They are looking for really sharp people, who have no problem being cagey, and furthering Amazon's "cult"ure.

    Interview Questions

    • Expect a thorough examination of how you feel about the leadership principles.   1 Answer

  4. Helpful (15)  

    Solution Architect Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience

    Interview

    After phone screening with recruiter, there were two very detailed phone interviews. First one was very technical, and the second one was mostly behavioral. Then I was invited to Seattle for a series of in-person interviews. Before in-person interviews there was also some work samples they assigned to me on AWS that I had to complete within 48 hours. During in-person interview I met with 5 people one after the other. The first one was technical where I had to draw diagrams on whiteboards etc. The rest were more behavioral.

    Interview Questions


  5. Helpful (13)  

    Solution Architect Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Herndon, VA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (Herndon, VA) in May 2014.

    Interview

    Still in process. Applied online. Contacted within a couple weeks of applying and interview scheduled within a week of that. Still in-process.
    Questions followed the general line of those posted on glassdoor (TCP vs UDP, explain how DNS works, horizontal vs verticle scaling, relational vs NoSQL DB pros/cons, CDN, how to make an application redundant, etc

    Interview Questions

    • Did not really have any difficult questions. Was asked about developing large scale solutions (in this case, large scale was greater than a few thousand users which doesn't really seem large scale). Discussed a past project experience.   Answer Question

  6. Helpful (8)  

    Solution Architect Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon in October 2013.

    Interview

    I had a phone interview with a current Solution Architect. The interview itself was fine and the process for applying and scheduling the interview was fine, but there was no follow-up afterwards, and no response to my thank you email. Obviously I didn't get the job, but if I take time away from my job to spend 90 minutes on the phone with you, you could do me the courtesy of sending a ten-word canned email thanking me for my time and informing me that you're going with other candidates. Otherwise, it's obvious that you're a company that doesn't care about people.

    Two weeks later, I wrote a second follow-up: a ten-word canned email thanking them for their time and an informing them that I had accepted another offer (from a firm that gets much better reviews here on GlassDoor). No resposne to that email, either.

    Interview Questions

    • Difference between horizontal and vertical scaling   2 Answers

  7. Helpful (31)  

    Solution Architect Interview

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

    Application

    I applied through other source. The process took 4+ months. I interviewed at Amazon (Seattle, WA) in September 2012.

    Interview

    These guys have the skill to make an easy process difficult.. They wont share the person's name, it felt like interrogation, not an interview.. and they do a lot of it.. Why did I agree to go through it? Because my impression of AWS was it would be like Amazon is to customers..

    Interview Questions

    • Everything revolves around some stupid leadership principles.. what i found it is everyone makes up garbage to get in, when you get in you see the vessel is full of Micro$oft rats..That is when I knew, this was a disaster..   1 Answer
  8. Helpful (20)  

    Solution Architect Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Amazon (New York, NY) in August 2013.

    Interview

    Recruiter called me & asked me some basic question about experience..etc He felt I was a great fit. He was very laid back in responding to emails..etc Didn't know if this was common with Amazon. Finally I had an tech interview for almost an hr. He started w some basic structure of AWS & regular job description ..etc
    Diff between
    TCP vs UDP
    4 adv of Cloud
    NAS vs SAN
    Any 5 Unix commands
    httpd vs tomcat server
    Network latency vs bandwidth
    Why does putty throw an error -" Refused connection"
    What is Elastic Cache, EC 2 & cloud watch.

    I felt I answered reasonably well. But I wasn't selected. :o( I was really really disappointed, but oh well..I hope there's a better offer round the corner.
    It seemed like they wanted a jack of all trades. Not sure if they can find one.

    Interview Questions

    • Difference between NAS vs SAN   1 Answer

  9. Helpful (37)  

    Solution Architect Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 1+ week. I interviewed at Amazon in January 2014.

    Interview

    after posting my resume online I was contacted by a recruiter. My interview was scheduled for almost a week after first contact and then rescheduled the day of the interview due to a conflict. The interviewer that was supposed to conduct it ultimately didn't even on the rescheduled date, making me think they guy that I spoke with was a last second fill-in. This likely impacted the interview in a negative fashion, as he was professional but not very friendly.

    I was told it would be very technical, per the position description. I know virtualization and solution architecture pretty well so I spent a lot of time learning about the AWS stack and how it works. It is cool stuff, and worth the effort just to get up to speed on where back-end computing is headed.

    We got right into it, so I tried to explain my background and give him some baseline knowledge so he could gauge where he wanted to ask his questions. That probably didn't help things either as the questions were all over the place and while some where obvious and easy 'instant answer', an equal amount were really vague or so AWS stack specific I didn't know the answer even if I knew the concept.

    The interview lasted a solid 60 minutes, I was asked a broad range of questions, including: the basic concepts and terms of virtualization
    "what does cloud computing mean to you"
    "do you have an AWS account? what do you do with it?"
    how I would optimize a high volume hosted site with slow load times
    what a content delivery network was
    difference between TCP & UDP
    basic terms and components of AWS technology stack
    what is NoSQL, how is it used?
    definition and difference between symmetric and asymmetric security
    what options are there for database optimization
    how would you secure data in motion as well as data at rest?
    how would you encrypt data in a database on AWS (apparently native encryption options in Oracle and MS SQL is a newly supported AWS feature)
    How do you organize a data mart database? (I had no idea)

    Interview Questions

    • Describe how to best organize a data mart database   2 Answers

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