I see a lot of complaining about the Amazon bar being low - do people at top companies look down on Amazom SDEs?

Amazon / Eng
Ajfksbdjab

Amazon Eng

PRE
Oracle
Ajfksbdjabmore
Apr 8, 2018 42 Comments

It's true that the talent at Amazon is far lower than Google or FB or trading companies etc (nobody turns down Airbnb for Amazon) but in terms of customer improvements/products it seems like Amazon is doing a lot more. Google has uniformly brilliant engineering Ubermensches but cant even make a solid chat app and GCP is 4th in the world. FB has excellent chat apps but the newsfeed and UI is a disaster. Both FB and Google have contributed more to open source (thrift, protobuf, tensor flow and pytorch come to mind) than Amazon however.

Is it really fair to think of us as subhuman or stupid then?

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TOP 42 Comments
  • Amazon Gopnik
    Maybe, just maybe, engineering excellence isn’t the only path to success?
    Apr 8, 2018 4
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      OP
      I think that's the key to Amazon. Somehow they're able to convert really high tier oldfarts with mediocre new grads into pure productivity.
      Apr 8, 2018
    • New ☕👌
      As much as people like to bash them, I think Amazon's leadership principles have a lot to do with that.

      Great developers who have ownership and initiative that regularly think about how their actions benefit the customer can offer more business value than technically elite developers without the same perspective.
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Amazon QTPie2
      As a high tier old fart, I solute your analysis Ajfks. Though not all the new grads are mediocre - but the average L4, sure. Highly desireable teams like mine have good L4s who can go toe to toe with fresh grad Nooglers. But in general, the LPs are all about enforcing a culture that gets good results out of mediocre new grads.
      Apr 9, 2018
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      OP
      I interned at Amazon. Really impressed by the experienced folk..not as much with some of the people that got intern convert offers with me.

      Are you in AWS?
      Apr 9, 2018
  • New ☕👌
    Good at leetcode != brilliant engineer
    Apr 8, 2018 0
  • Axtria Together
    It is NEVER fair to look down on anyone, think of them as subhuman or stupid.
    Apr 8, 2018 1
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      OP
      It might not be fair, but I'm sure people do it anyway.
      Apr 8, 2018
  • It'd be stupid of a FB/Google eng to look down on Amazon engs when they probably failed palantir/jane st interviews themselves.

    Amazon just seems to get a bad rep for work-life balance, perks and pay.

    What is Facebook? A basic website broken into 2 apps for extra number fiddling + WhatsApp, inferior to rivals. What is airbnb? A crud website. What is Netflix? A pay-to-use YouTube.

    Amazon has much more variety as does Google and MS. If interesting projects was the only consideration then the first 3 are low tier companies... pay and perks push them up
    Apr 8, 2018 4
    • Amazon Vjdjsjd
      Amazon is not a engineering focused company and engineering quality is far below average.
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Tell that to all the startups and unicorns dependent on their tech
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Amazon QTPie2
      We deliver results, we don't twiddle knobs. The reason we love to hire SDMs with startup experience is to beat whiny engineers into shipping products while our PEs and Sr. SDEs ramble on about engineering excellence and operational excellence. And we rely on your backbone to help you negotiate the tradeoffs around tech debt.
      Apr 9, 2018
    • Amazon OuIE04
      What results? Everything we ship is mediocre at best with a few exceptions. And customers feel that. That’s why nobody uses anything but EC2 on AWS, nobody watches Amazon Video or listens to Amazon Music that came with Prime, nobody uses Alexa for anything but timers.

      «Most customer-focused company. » Yeh, right...
      May 3, 2018
  • Google EqTg24
    Never. But I may think amazon engineers have lower leetcode skills.
    Apr 8, 2018 1
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      I feel like that's the same thing
      Apr 8, 2018
  • Amazon / Eng Arty
    You sounded like Indian5’6” or a similar troll that obviously tried so hard to damage your employer or somehow you still have access to Amazon (and Msft?) blind accounts). Not sure what your agenda here is but I think the best closure for all the grudge would be to move on with your life. It’s done - get over it.
    Apr 8, 2018 0
  • CareerBuilder AgnewsHead
    I doubt people in general spend any time at all thinking about people at other companies, much less looking down on them.
    Apr 8, 2018 4
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      I do 😢😥
      Apr 8, 2018
    • CareerBuilder AgnewsHead
      Sounds like something you should speak yo your therapist about
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      I can't I dont make enough money 😥
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Refer me to Amazon. You will make money for the referral
      Apr 8, 2018
  • Google s89
    Why do u care?? My personal experience. I failed amzn interviews twice in last 5 years..
    Apr 8, 2018 6
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      For SWE?
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Amazon QTPie2
      I rejected a Google engineer just the other day. Or rather he was downleveled for bar lowering LPs.
      Apr 9, 2018
    • eBay gadkari
      What do you look for when asking LP questions?
      Apr 9, 2018
    • Amazon QTPie2
      Signs of understanding that responsibilities of an engineer are about successful product delivery and the supporting activities and not just coding. No red flags on key areas (i.e. lying to your teammates or manager, inability to take ownership or responsibility, etc.). Examples at correct scope and scale for level and role. I don't want to hear about how changing a method signature to support a generic shows Think Big for an L5, or working around a library limitation and adding a new class to the library shows Ownership for an L6.
      Apr 9, 2018
    • Amazon OuIE04
      Let me translate from AMZNspeak. We are looking for an evidence of how good you can bullshit on the spot. That’s a very important skill you’ll need for your future career.
      May 3, 2018
  • Facebook Mysharona
    No. Amazon never even responded to my application so their bar can’t be that low. But I suck, so my not getting noticed means nothing
    Apr 8, 2018 3
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      How can you suck if you're at FB lol
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Facebook Mysharona
      You’d be surprised
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      As an SWE? How strange.
      Apr 8, 2018
  • Microsoft / Eng
    mrballz@fb

    Microsoft Eng

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    Microsoft
    mrballz@fbmore
    No, Amazon is solid. I heard their hiring bar is lower for entry level but they fire agreesively.

    I think it is good that there is a company that takes chances on people with less than stellar background and gives an opportunity to prove themselves.
    Apr 9, 2018 1
    • Amazon QTPie2
      Yup, L4 bar is lower, L5 bar is comparable, L6 bar at Amazon is insanely hard for external hires.
      Apr 9, 2018
  • Amazon flyingML
    I have done my fair share of interviewing around.
    Interview questions at Google/FB/MSFT are not more difficult than the questions we ask for my org.
    We do reject a lot of internal candidates so I guess the variance in standard is high.
    Amazon does emphasize a lot on leadership skills during the interview process.
    Apr 8, 2018 1
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      Which org?
      Apr 8, 2018
  • Google ifeelfat
    People with healthy self esteem from G or FB dont look down on others, even if they are not as smart or whatever.
    Apr 8, 2018 1
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      Nice backhanded reassurance I guess
      Apr 9, 2018
  • Google steward
    No.
    Apr 8, 2018 2
    • Amazon / Eng
      Ajfksbdjab

      Amazon Eng

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      Ajfksbdjabmore
      OP
      Do you really not or is this just the political correctness talking?

      Whenever I talk about Amazon to folks that work at top companies the only thing they have to say is that our stock price is good - which doesn't help me because my initial Grant was near nothing and I'm only taking home 5% of it this year. That makes me think they're just trying to be "nice" because their opinion of Amazon engineers is so low.
      Apr 8, 2018
    • Microsoft fjdjdj
      I recommend seeing a therapist for anxiety. I've seen therapists in the past and it's been great. No shame in it.
      Apr 9, 2018
  • Airbnb GooogIe
    Not at all, I don’t actually think many people realize that the leetcode bar is lower anyway.

    The only real judgement might be for managers because of the ruthless culture there.
    Apr 8, 2018 0

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