Amazon - Used to be better | Glassdoor
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Helpful (5)

"Used to be better"

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

I have been working at Amazon full-time (More than 5 years)

Pros

Amazon makes cool software. If you time your moves right, there is a fair amount of mobility between teams within the company.

Cons

Amazon is switching to High Density seating. HD should be for data, not people. HD seating means developers no longer get their own cubicles, we have to sit in large bullpens that contain a dozen or more people. This is just terrible for both productivity and culture (everybody is too noisy, so productivity takes a major hit, but you also try to be considerate of your neighbors, so socializing takes a hit). They say this problem will go away when the new buildings start coming online later in 2014, but they really need to just rent more space now. At the rate Amazon is growing, those new buildings will fill up with HD seating just as soon as they're built.

On a similar note about Amazon's growth: it feels like we're in a phase of runaway personnel growth. This means we can't hire front-line managers fast enough to keep up with the development team expansion, and the development teams are getting to large for their managers to handle. Also there are a lot of fairly new managers who really don't know what they are doing. This is resulting in lots of developers not getting the help they need to further their careers.

Software testing is one of those areas that comes into political favor, and goes out again in a couple of years. In some departments, this means the QA teams get absorbed into the development teams (and then those people get assigned developer work and pagers). In other departments, this means that the QA team just doesn't get headcount expansion to cover new teams and team expansion. But the QA team is still expected to do some kind of coverage of these expanded and new teams. This means nobody is happy with the QA teams. Developers are frustrated because QA isn't keeping up, and is stalling releases. Development managers are put upon to provide more headcount for QA, or otherwise close the gap. QA is unhappy from being overworked and/or not getting the services covered. QA also doesn't have the bandwidth to do major process improvements that would improve their productivity.

Advice to Management

Rent enough space to seat the software developers comfortably. High Density seating is eroding productivity and culture, and will probably result in much higher turnover in the near future.

Other Employee Reviews for Amazon

  1. "Get Ready"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - CSA in Lexington-Fayette, KY
    Current Employee - CSA in Lexington-Fayette, KY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The customer truly is #1--as a CSA, I have the authority to do just about whatever I think is right to make our customers happy (which makes ME happy). The dress code is uber casual (yup, you can wear your PJs to work), it's not a homogeneous group of employees, schedule changes are relatively easy, the environment is fun, and everyone is expected to have a sense of ownership in the company. Most employees are friendly and more than happy to help one another out with job performance issues and even a ride to work.

    Cons

    They are incredibly strict about attendance...they've got you timed down to seconds, and it's not flexible. DO NOT run out of unpaid time off (which is slim to begin with). Amazon is also super cheap (or, eh-hem, "frugal"). Better pay, benefits, and perks would be great. Employees get a 10% discount...up to $100 per year (excluding Prime memberships--which are totally full price).

    Advice to Management

    Offer better perks and more flexibility to employees, even if it's just to compensate for the less than stellar pay rates. Other than that, you're on point!


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Taxing"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Wharehouse Associate in Chattanooga, TN
    Former Employee - Wharehouse Associate in Chattanooga, TN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Good pay relative to other minimum wage and wharehouse jobs.

    Cons

    Terribly designed quota system. Physically exhausting.

    Advice to Management

    I don't know anyone who stayed longer than 3 months. Your turnover rate is astronomical. I would consider lightening the load on each individual.

There are newer employer reviews for Amazon
There are newer employer reviews for Amazon

See Most Recent

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