Founded in July 1994 by Jeff Bezos, Amazon is today the largest Internet retailer in the world - by revenue and market cap. The American retail behemoth recently invested $5 billion in India, in addition to the $260 million earlier this year. The latest investment makes it clear that Amazon is betting big on the India story. No wonder that landing a job at Amazon is a dream for many freshers as well as middle and senior-level managers.
The company also values talent hugely. In his 1998 letter to shareholders, just four years after Amazon was founded, CEO Jeff Bezos wrote: “It would be impossible to produce results in an environment as dynamic as the Internet without extraordinary people… Setting the bar high in our approach to hiring has been, and will continue to be, the single most important element of Amazon’s success.”
So if you want to work with the e-commerce big daddy, you’re in fine company. These top Amazon interview tips are sure to help you ace it:
Prepare for different kinds of interactions
Candidates seeking a job at Amazon usually go through an online assessment and a phone screening before their first in-person meeting. When it comes to the interview, questions can be widespread and can encompass behavioral, situational, technical and functional questions. Miriam Park, Amazon's director of MBA and university recruiting, has said: “We focus on hard and soft skills to learn about candidates and how they operate in different situations.”
Know all that you can Amazon before the interview
Amazon prides itself on being the earth’s most customer-centric company. Park said that it’s extremely important to understand that and research “how it manifests itself in how we operate. Everything we do makes a difference in added value to our customers”.
Don’t sweat the small stuff - be yourself…
Park recently gave CNBC Make It her one top tip for more successful job interviews. “Be your authentic self,” said the head recruiter, who has worked at the retail giant for almost six years. Employers are keen to know “how you have owned a role and moved the needle forward, demonstrated curiosity and where you have solved a problem,” she said. She added that applicants should express their own selves and be “you”.
…but show how well you will align with the Amazon culture
Park also said that Amazon’s “intent” when interviewing is to ensure that the candidate aligns well with the company culture to ensure “fulfilling work”. When interviewing candidates, she and the other recruiting staff seek applicants who align with company beliefs, including customer obsession, curiosity, ownership and thinking big.
Focus on your strengths and accomplishments
The tech giant receives a high number of applicants for almost every role because the company “keeps Millennials' voracious appetite satisfied”. How do you stand out in the sea of applicants? “Don't be nervous. Focus on what your strengths are, your accomplishments and a demonstration of deep curiosity,” Park advised.
Keep Bezos' 3 critical questions in mind
Last, but not the least, remember that Bezos has given his hiring mangers three critical measures to analyze potential hires. Ensure that you make the cut by keeping them in mind:• Will you admire this person?• Will this person raise the average level of effectiveness of the group they're entering?• Along what dimensions might this person be a superstar?
These are some interview questions prospective employees have been asked while interviewing with Amazon. To find out the best way to answer them, click here.
• Do you know our CEO? How do you pronounce his name?• How would you solve problems if you were from Mars?• Tell the story of the last time you had to apologize to someone.• What is the most difficult situation you have ever faced in your life? How did you handle it?• Walk me through how Amazon Kindle books would be priced.• Who was your most difficult customer?• What is the angle between hour hand and minute hand in an analog clock?• You are Amazon and Samsung offers you 10,000 Samsung Galaxy 3s at a 34% discount. Is that a good deal?• What is the worst mistake you ever made?• What would you do if you found out that your closest friend at work was stealing?• If your direct manager was instructing you to do something you disagreed with, how would you handle it?• Describe what Human Resource means to you.• How do you detect whether or not a word is a palindrome?• Here's a string with numbers from 1-250 in random order, but it's missing one number. How will you find the missed number?• Are you willing to work on your feet for ten hours, four days a week?• Do you think you'll reach a point where you storm off the floor and never return?• What would you do if you saw someone being unsafe at work?• What would you do if somehow you misdirected 10,000 units of something?• How would you tell a customer what Wi-Fi is?
For more interview advice, go here.
This article has been compiled from various sources including company websites, corporate review sites, online discussion forums and knowledge sharing platforms.