Amazon Software Development Engineer II Reviews | Glassdoor

Amazon Software Development Engineer II Reviews

Updated June 21, 2017
284 reviews

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Software Development Engineer II

3.6
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Amazon Chairman, President, and CEO Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos
216 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Work life balance is a challenge (in 1724 reviews)

  • No work life balance around the holidays (in 376 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "AWS"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer-II in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer-II in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Culture in AWS is nothing like the NY time article

    Cons

    Could use a real coffee machine


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Amazing, have not used my brain like this in a while."

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

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

    Pros

    Hard problems, lots of smart people. Good support from managers, and fun projects.

    Cons

    The company is so big it takes a little while to learn to navigate internal sites to find other teams that are doing similar things in order to collaborate.

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up, you already listen to us by taking actions on surveys.

  3. "Software Development Engineer II"

    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

    Build systems that impact a lot of people and do huge things. If your team isn't making millions of dollars a year, you'll be on a new team soon.

    Coworkers who range from competent to excellent.

    Decent pay for the area.

    Cons

    If you're on a team with bad managers you will hate life. At least there is a new policy allowing you to transfer ASAP, which you should do. (- culture/values)

    Things are a bit too team dependent. I'm on a team I like. There are other teams that cannot retain people at all because their managers straight up suck at their jobs. (- senior management)(- culture/values)

    Comp is decent but not competitive with google/facebook/uber. (- comp rating)

    Crunch time is a management failure so you can expect to see it a few times a year. (- work/life)

    Advice to Management

    Hold management accountable for being terrible. If all of your devs quit multiple times, that manager needs to be fired. (- senior management)


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Varies by team, but my experience has been great"

    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

    Pros

    I've heard everything from horror stories to "best job ever" stories; bottom line is, your experience will probably vary a lot by the team and position. That said, here are some things I've enjoyed on all of the teams (4 so far) I've worked on:

    - Working with smart people. At every level, in every position, my teammates have been outstanding, really inspiring me to raise my own game
    - Working on interesting problems. There's a huge breadth of work to be done, and finding a team that's working on something interesting has not been a problem.

    Cons

    - Team experience varies widely across the company. I've heard stories similar to the worst of them: folks working insane hours on unreasonable deadlines, etc. I will say it's gotten better--the market is so tight right now that those teams either adapt or perish
    - Amazon-scale is a double-edged sword. The problems you get to solve are like no other in the world. But on the other hand, everything you want to do is enormous and complicated. Systems are broken across teams, and every new thing that you want to do is likely to require contacts across multiple teams and even multiple organizations. Luckily, Amazon has a formal mentorship program to help newer folks navigate


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Very Fortunate To Work Here but Could Do Better"

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

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

    Pros

    - Decent benefits for a tech company including good health care and commuter benefits
    - Fast and innovative projects
    - Great opportunities to own projects on multiple levels
    - Decent career growth

    Cons

    - Women typically make less than men
    - Knowledge of certain systems and seniority are valued higher than treating people with respect (as in someone can call your ideas stupid or you ignorant as long as their justification behind it is fine)
    - Subpar benefits compared to other big name companies

    Advice to Management

    - Give women and men similar salaries - as in don't give women higher projects and more work and then pay her less than her male coworkers
    - Provide equal opportunities to deserving employees


  6. "Amazon Review"

    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
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great company to work and learn for. You will built a good resume with salaries comparable to what good companies pay.

    Cons

    Not a great work life balance.


  7. "Ok company, too frugal to be fun"

    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
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Amazon full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    I got to work with really smart people

    Cons

    Management, politics, etc.

    The only way to advance is to kind of screw others over

    Advice to Management

    Aggressively manage the performance of managers. Get right of the dummies

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Software Development Engineer 2"

    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 (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Interesting work with smart and talented people. Great pay. Work from home on occasion.

    Cons

    The bias for action company principle outweighs the others. This result is the creation of more value at the expense of letting existing value decay - this translates to a legacy code base. It results in a people having been there the longest being the sole proprietors of the intellectual property being developed there. The rest of us get to work without much hope for growth in the short term. This is especially exacerbated by the completely custom systems there. The learning curve is steep.

    Advice to Management

    There are those of us (developers) who don't mind working hard. TPM should not be allowed to advance to manage developers. Their bias for action will always trump a developers ability to keep our systems maintaned smoothly without the need for big expensive rewrites every 2-5 years. I know that top management looks for ways to bring down operating costs, and this is a way. It would also avoid a lot of the employee turnover and frustration.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Software Development Engineer II"

    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
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    - Working with smart talented people
    - Solving challenging problems at scale only handled by few companies.
    - Good pay

    Cons

    - Some orgs have terrible work life balance
    - On-call can be troublesome at times when you get paged at inconvenient times.
    - Perks are few
    - Not many resources/ direction on how to grow your career. No levels in between SDE 2 to SDE 3 and getting promoted to SDE 3 takes time.


  10. "Good for developing software engineering skills"

    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 a year)

    Pros

    - Good place to develop software engineering technical skills

    Cons

    - Benefits and perks are less attractive compared to other tech companies
    - Promotion is difficult in certain orgs