Amazon - Good work, mediocre work environment. | Glassdoor
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Helpful (18)

"Good work, mediocre work environment."

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

I have been working at Amazon full-time

Pros

Amazon as a company is growing rapidly. It's going into new markets and challenging big players as well as innovating in markets where it's already quite ahead. There is no dearth of choice when you are working at Amazon. There are a number of teams working on different products across all sorts of areas.

The best part is that the work which you do will get shipped.

That's the main thing which I love about Amazon. Software you write will see light of day in say 6 months. That's how quickly things move here. Teams are small and ownership is more. Process is lightweight and will never hinder you. I have never been asked to fill in time-sheets or made to give hourly estimates. People are friendly. Technical arguments are settled based on data and with respect.

Amazon does most of its development in Java and uses a lot of open-source software. This frees engineers to focus on problems rather than re-engineer software which already exists.

Although some teams have poor work-life balance, the ones which I have worked in had no such problems. I have been able to do a 9-5 on most days without any work carrying over to the weekends.

Cons

The rapid growth of Amazon and increasing head counts have put a lot of pressure on the buildings which house Amazon employees. Many Amazon buildings are packed. Seating is cramped and elevator rides can be too close for comfort.

Career growth is hard. Starting developers enter at SDE 1 with a clear path to SDE 2, but from there on out it's hard to get to SDE 3 or above. Employees on immigrant work visas like H1B should know that Amazon does not start your permanent residency process till you hit SDE 2 (level 5). This is where sometimes politics rears its ugly head. You might find really hard working engineers play the game.

Amazon does not give you additional perks if you compare it with companies like Microsoft or Google. Apart from the 10% discount on Amazon purchases (capped at $100) and few team outings you won't get much. Don't expect to get the latest Amazon gadgets for free.

Advice to Management

Fix at least the first two problems listed in the Cons section.

Other Employee Reviews for Amazon

  1. "Great place to intern. Be ready for frugality though and you will love it !"

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

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

    Pros

    Great access to work across the company. Very smart people and a great place to start your career. Most managers are accessible and make time to discuss your work and how your time in the company has been

    Cons

    Work life balance is a decision on how fast you want to grow vs how relaxed you want to be. Also, ON CALL DUTY is really terrible for certain teams. So cross your fingers !!


  2. Helpful (2)

    "For beginner's OK. Not for senior people"

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

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

    Pros

    If you are fresh out of college, you can learn a lot in a short time and get the name on your resume.

    Cons

    Long hours, legacy codebase and lack of documentation. Burnt out in a few years.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on a few products and services Spending your energy in so different areas results in mediocre quality.

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

See Most Recent

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