Amazon Software engineer Reviews | Glassdoor

Amazon software engineer Reviews

Updated March 24, 2017
1,401 reviews

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1,401 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Learn a lot of things and good working environment (in 327 reviews)

  • There are a lot of smart people in aws (in 737 reviews)

Cons
  • Work-life balance is not easy here (in 1452 reviews)

  • No work life balance around the holidays (in 313 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Summer Software Development Engineer Internship in Seattle"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer Intern in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer Intern in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great Intern project + chance to explore Seattle for a summer + great coworkers + dogs, lots of dogs

    Cons

    Experience is very team specific, not all the interns had great experiences. You may not end up in Seattle. Very little control of how your experience will be. This is not unique to Amazon though.


  2. "Software Engineer Intern"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Intern - Software Development Engineer Intern in Seattle, WA
    Current Intern - Software Development Engineer Intern in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Amazon as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Definitely lot of things to learn for newbie. You can get experience with recent technology in cloud industry.

    Cons

    Spending on employees should be improved. No vacation for interns

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up. But care for employess


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Software Development Engineer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Amazon full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    It is among the big 4, so you choose your team and org carefully (and with some luck), you can grow in your career quickly

    Cons

    Employee benefits/perks are meager, diversity numbers are terrible and operational load can be a big burden depending on your team


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  5. "SDE Intern"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Software Development Engineer I Intern in Seattle, WA
    Former Intern - Software Development Engineer I Intern in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Amazon as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    - I was given an interesting project.
    - I got to have daily discussions with my mentor regarding problems and design decisions.
    - Good management.
    - The internship program was overall well organized.
    - There were frequent intern events.
    - Face paced (this is a subjective pro).

    Cons

    - Open office (depends on the team and limited in size though).

    Advice to Management

    I wish there was more exposure to lessons from the Principal Engineers. I found some material on the Wiki that I thought was really good, but I don't think that material was linked anywhere as an intern resource.


  6. "SDE Intern"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer Intern in Santa Barbara, CA
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer Intern in Santa Barbara, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Amazon (Less than a year)

    Pros

    They treat intern pretty well.

    Cons

    Experience depends on the team you were put in


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Not balanced"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer II in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer II in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Amazon full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Big company. Lots of mobility between teams.

    Cons

    Mediocre pay and benefits. Not a lot of personal interest in employees except when things aren't great. Also very elitist where CS degrees vs all other degrees are concerned.

    Advice to Management

    Stop basing people's worth on their ability to solve irrelevant coding problems and try harder to praise hard work and results.


  8. Helpful (4)

    "A Diverse Company with Diverse Experience"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Amazon full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Domain and technology diversity
    - Autonomous internal organizations lead to experiences of working at different companies
    - Accessible company-wide educational resources for self-learning
    - Dog-friendly workplace

    Cons

    - Autonomous internal organizations could lead to very poor experience contradictory to overall company management goals (the leadership principles)
    - Aggressive stack ranking comes with its own host of problems related to employee dissatisfaction, lack of team productivity, lack of trust among peers, etc.
    - Not enough senior individual contributors in technical roles for proper mentorship; it leads to pushing advices that are counter to industry standards and are detrimental to career growth outside of Amazon
    - Leadership principles can be over-indexed (like Delivering Results and Bias for Action) to the detriment of the product and customers.

    Advice to Management

    - Eliminate or at least change the stack ranking system so that people can comfortably collaborate effectively instead of sabotaging each other's work.
    - Provide incentives to management, especially middle managers, to balance the leadership principles when it comes to performance evaluations, specifically principles that is focused on the long-term benefits to the product, customers, and the company.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Lots of Technical Debt"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer II in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer II in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Amazon full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good exposure to the business world. Fast-paced development action. Good salary and equity.

    Cons

    Very little focus on quality engineering. Drowning in overcommitted technical debt. Very little emphasis on employee happiness.

    Advice to Management

    Good engineers like building things they're proud of. It's probably a better long term strategy to build quality software, rather than getting the bare minimum built.


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Software Development Engineer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Amazon full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    1. Amazing learning pace from day 1. You literally hit the ground running.
    2. Great colleagues
    3. Very few companies of Amazon's stature

    Cons

    1. Not for everyone - the environment, the pace, the pressure.
    2. Leave ASAP if you develop health issues
    3. Asked to 'Do it yourself' from beginning. It would have been better if some training were given to reduce ramp-up time.

    Advice to Management

    1. Lacking in processes - very chaotic from day 1. Repeat issues need to be formally documented for future use.
    2. Improve office space and environment - very dry and tightly packed.


  11. Helpful (14)

    "Don't work here if you came from a startup environment"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer II in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Software Engineer II in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Amazon full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Smart co-workers. Having Amazon on your resume can enhance your career opportunities.

    Cons

    From engineer to senior managers, even PM, none of them care much about UI/UX, quoting from the management "I don't care about how the product will look like, just make it work first, we can worry about UI later", speaking of "working backward" that company often encourage, in Amazon way is to write a 10+ page of design document, spend 10 hours of reviewing it, rewrite your document several times because your manager doesn't like the introduction paragraph, then later at some point someone says "The navigation flow is not clear to me".

    The attrition rate is ridiculous, the people who did the welcome lunch for you most probably won't be the same ones doing the farewell lunch, 50% of people leave within the first year, 80% within the second, from my experience I'd say it's more than that.

    Instead of real engineering work, if you prefer to spend most of your time writing emails, doing operational work and playing corporate games to get the promotion then Amazon is probably for you. Oh, and good luck to stick with the same manager that can vouch for your promotion, either you changed the team or they change the manager for you.

    Advice to Management

    Heavily invest more resource on tooling and infrastructure, encourage more engineering driven culture within the company and please don't treat everyone like an easily replaceable cog, there is a reason that attrition rate is high and don't pretend that's normal.



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