I've got an interview at Amazon (specifically AWS) for a non-technical position this week. Is AWS as bad as they say it is, even for non-engineers? 😅

Also, I never realized how mediocre AMZ's benefits are...what are some of the reasons (besides RSUs) that would make anyone work there over other tech companies???

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Really depends on job family and team. I’m on tech team, and my hours are fine. (30-50) benefits are subpar, but I’m passionate about cloud infrastructure, and learning so much from being here so far. Comp alone is much higher than my previous firm. At some point I may go elsewhere (Azure, GCP, other company), but I want to get solid footing here before I move again

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PTO depends on your country of residence/contract. In the UK we get 25days off at AWS

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You come here to make more money, have the name on your resume for better higher paying exits and some of us came here to truly improve ourselves. Many folks here are alphas — it’s a tough culture. If one is used to coddling they won’t like it here — people have to be truly independent even as new hires. Every week I feel like I had to earn my paycheck. Not much coasting but I guess it depends on the org, client, boss, etc.

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Oh yeah - this place is extremely political. It’s part of the skills one needs to be successful L6+. But on the flip side, this experience teaches you have to navigate that.

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I did 2.5 years in non-tech roles at Amazon (in AWS infra and Alexa) before moving to Microsoft. The benefits and WLB are much better at MSFT, but if you’re earlier in career the growth opportunity is better at Amazon. You are empowered to come up with new ideas and push them forward, more so than I’ve ever seen at any other companies. Embrace the doc writing culture and you can do a lot of really awesome things, but you also have to be willing to put in the time. I can’t say what impact the pandemic has had on WLB as I left Amazon right before it started, but I’ve found Microsoft to be much more supportive of mental health and WLB. I’ve also worked with two people who have taken 6-month maternity leaves. And here at Microsoft they actually bring in a vendor to cover the leaves, unlike my experience at Amazon where I personally had to play double-duty for over 3 months when a colleague went out on mat leave.

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Also, negotiate hard before taking your Amazon offer. Don’t expect a raise or more RSUs in the first 2 years - so that signing bonus is essential, as you won’t vest much in RSUs those first two years. And if you don’t get more RSUs or a promotion before your fourth year, you’ll find yourself falling off an income cliff.

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If you’re going in with that attitude then why are you even interviewing?

AWS has been the best professional experience of my career. I have nothing but admiration and respect for AMZ and AWS and what they have done.

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Amazon 4 - you're right. Once I interview a few people on the team, I think I'll have a better understanding of the vibe and what the day to day will look like. One thing that covid has taught me is to prioritize mental health first and set clear work/life boundaries!!!

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I worked as a Supply Chain PgM at AWS Infra before joining Google. Amazon has pockets of good teams in a sea of meat grinder organizations. If they are hiring externally it's probably because it's on the latter. If it was a good team, people in that team would quickly find someone within their network inside Amazon to fill that position.
That said, Amazon PTO is not really PTO. You are still expected to respond to emails/pings and should not expect to unplug for more than 1-2 days.
Amazon was very attractive when the stock price was doubling every year. Now I see Amazon just as an opening door to the tech world. If that's not your case, don't even waste your time with it.

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Agree things at Google are slower, but then it becomes a matter of personal fit. I can deal with the over alignment culture, but couldn't cope with people being fired for the sake of meeting the unregretted attrition rate.

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I can't speak to non tech but in tech I more than doubled my comp by moving to AWS. Can't say no to that

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Yeah I work 40 hours a week. I'm on our professional services team

likehelpfulsmart

It allll depends on the team. Interview and go with your gut. It seems like you are pretty balanced and aligned internally and your parenting instinct will also tell you if you want to be working with those people. I agree that you want to be able to push hard for at least a year or two to get yourself on the board and make it through the hire/fire realm. I think Google or Apple is more a friendly environment in terms of benefits and wlb, but any FAANG will probably be challenging at first because you really have to hit your perfs. Comp is not to be sniffed at when providing for a family, but it doesn't trade out for time with your kids obviously.

likesmart

Also AWS is commonly considered the most "tough" part of Amazon, but I still say take the interview and then determine things with your family planning etc.

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I just accepted a non-tech offer.. the benefits are definitely mediocre.. but for me the main driver was the opportunities to learn and ability to move around within the organization..
PTO is definitely terrible, I have double that time off..
salary wise it was a bit of a bump for me..

good luck on interview.. prepare hard on the leadership principles and have the stories ready(preferably ones that some level of complexity)

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Congrats!!! For sure, the opportunities to grow and expand within an organization like Amazon would be amazing. Thank you for the interview tip!!!

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Amazon is a great FAANG to work for in terms of moving forward in your career, comp etc. But I saw your comment about wanting to have another child etc, and if you want to really win at Amazon I wouldn't necessarily do it unless you've got a couple years to put in selfishly there. You could try a year and see how it goes with your family and what might work with timing as you plan to have your baby. Obviously take the interview. It also depends on the team.

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Love it. Spoken like a true Amazonian.

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Thank you all for the great advice - I went into the interview unsure if this was the right role for me, and as it turns out, AMZ decided to move forward with another candidate, so I think the feeling was mutual! 😅 I am actually waiting to get an offer from another company that isn't as exciting as a FAMGA, but offers a great WLB, family-friendly policies, and a team that hopefully, I can learn a lot from. Thanks again for your input 😊

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Happy for you!

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Can someone talk about the benefits? I’m curious. why do you say they aren’t as good as other tech companies?

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I dnt even use any of my benefits at Deloitte pretty much. (I'm young)

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Facts -
Salary is not the end all be all

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What is Amazons annual pto accrual rate?

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Interesting

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