Amazon WDE lowball?

Mar 8 11 Comments

Just got an offer from Amazon in Seattle. I interviewed for a FEE II spot, got an offer for a WDE II spot due to a “weakness in algorithms and data structures” and a strength in front end specific technologies (that’s probably accurate...)

Their initial offering is:

108k base (they say they absolutely can’t go higher than this)
27.5k sign on Y1, 20.5k Y2
34 RSU
TC 137k

I can’t help but almost feel offended by this. I make approximately 130k TC in Chicago now. I’ve explained the difference in CoL but the recruiter has more or less ignored it from the beginning.

I’m going to counter but I don’t even know where to begin... Help pls.

Edit: 3.5YoE, no counter offers in Seattle (1 in Chicago for approximately the same TC but the value is cash rather than RSU like it is now)


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TOP 11 Comments
  • Now that Amazon has an official FEE role, I think the salary for WDE is on the lower end. You cannot be expected to be payed in the SDE bands if your performance in the algorithms side was not stellar.

    What I see from the above communication is that the team would like your expertise in the web dev area, but won't miss you if you decide to not join.

    That being said, I know several cases like this and I know that it is pretty straight forward to move from WDE to FEE role once you are inside Amazon. Talk to your manager about this intention and you should be able to come up with a plan to move to FEE in under a year. (You will have to put in the extra work to show that you have improved in the algorithms etc aspect). But this is definitely possible and if you want to otherwise join Amazon, don't miss out just for the salary in the short term.

    The above salary is of course not stellar and I don't think you will get Amazon to change this too much. Again this comes back to the interview performance.

    PM me if you want to know more about the job roles etc.
    Mar 9 3
    • OP
      This was super insightful. Thanks man. Do you think it’s reasonable to even make a counter offer with that being said? Even if it’s only say +7-10k?
      Mar 9
    • You can try. Not sure if they will budge.
      Mar 9
    • Oracle Sparty
      You probably won’t get far on base: when a recruiter says they’ve hit their base cap, it rarely budges from there. You can (and should!) ask for maybe 3-5k more, but you’ll probably get 0.

      That said: push on bonus and RSUs. Those are always the more flexible points of an offer, and while there’s no guarantee you’ll get anywhere without a local compete, the fact you have a compete at all might get you some more there.

      All that said: if you really want to up the offer, try to get a local compete. One of the Seattle cloud teams is ideal, but anything in Seattle will help immensely.

      Alternatively: take the job in Chicago, study up, and reapply in 6 months.
      Mar 10
  • New sparked
    Looks like they downleveled you; looks like a 1 offer not 2
    Mar 8 3
    • OP
      How’s this offer for a WDE I? I feel like this would be meh even for a fresh grad.
      Mar 8
    • New sparked
      It’s a solid 1 offer but still room to grow.

      I take it it’s located in Seattle?
      Mar 8
    • OP
      Mar 8
  • Activision Blizzard others
    What’s WDE
    Mar 8 1
  • OP
    Just an update for anybody who is looking in this in the future... I did ask for a counter, amazon gave me approximately 3k additional (asked for 10k).

    Interview was originally for a FEE position. I did well during the interview on the front end portions, okay on the data structures and probably a little less than average on the system design and those combination of things are what got me down leveled.

    Thanks those who replied 🙏

    Edit: I don’t think I’m taking this offer, but I may reapply in the future.
    Mar 12 0


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