Transition to Amazon SPM

Microsoft GChX27
Dec 5, 2017 14 Comments

I work in a Marketing role in MS and now want to transition to a Sr Product Manager role in Amazon. I have an top tier MBA and a few years of experience under my belt at MS.

Questions -
1) How realistic is the transition? Considering I will be competing with a talent pool that already has PM experience. I was a management consultant and banker so have mostly service experience.

2) Is online is best/ fastest way to apply or do referrals work faster?

3) How long of a wait before you hear back from the recruiter? How long does the entire interview process take?

comments

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TOP 14 Comments
  • Hitachi Vantara / Product
    iotpm

    Hitachi Vantara Product

    PRE
    GoPro, United Technologies
    BIO
    PM for Industrial IoT with strong engineering, entrepreneurial and PM experience
    iotpmmore
    With a top tier MBA you definitely can. However you'd be in the same boat as other post MBA SPMs at Amazon. Why not try to move to PM at Microsoft
    Dec 5, 2017 6
    • Microsoft / Product
      Karsa

      Microsoft Product

      PRE
      startups
      Karsamore
      This isn't true at all. What groups ate they in? There are plenty of "single threaded owner" /product roles
      Dec 5, 2017
    • Microsoft GChX27
      OP
      That might be true Karsa. I perhaps have a very small view from all up MS perspective. This is an internal tooling team in MS, so not really a customer facing product either.
      Dec 5, 2017
    • Microsoft / Product
      Karsa

      Microsoft Product

      PRE
      startups
      Karsamore
      Internal tooling doesn't sound glamorous or customer focused but not the worst place to learn some fundamentals
      Dec 5, 2017
    • Hitachi Vantara / Product
      iotpm

      Hitachi Vantara Product

      PRE
      GoPro, United Technologies
      BIO
      PM for Industrial IoT with strong engineering, entrepreneurial and PM experience
      iotpmmore
      Ya I would avoid internal tooling teams. To move up the PM chain it's important to have a track record of successful product launches with real revenue
      Dec 5, 2017
    • Microsoft / Product
      Karsa

      Microsoft Product

      PRE
      startups
      Karsamore
      I'll agree with the above statement with the caveat that it's hard to start the pm chain without some experience as a PM.
      Dec 5, 2017
  • Amazon / Design MiddleWest
    It’s a realistic expectation, especially with the consulting and IB experience, but as was mentioned, you’ll still be in the mix of Amazon’s pool. You’d be looking at an L6 role, which is what everyone from brand-new MBAs to professionals with smaller company or non-tech experience come in with. Some MS people come in at L7, but usually they have +10yrs there.

    The functions would be very similar to Microsoft. Also, as was asked, what’s wrong with staying at MS?

    If you want to do a referral, which can be faster, wait til after January 1. It’s still not a guarantee. The process can take a couple months but they try to move much faster. For me it was about 8 weeks and they continually apologized for that.
    Dec 5, 2017 4
    • Microsoft GChX27
      OP
      Thanks Middlewest! MS is a great place I agree, I just want to get diverse experience while I am still at relatively low level in my career and constantly challenge myself. Though MS has many opportunities, I currently am more intrigued my the product manager role in Amazon so want to try that :)
      Dec 5, 2017
    • Amazon / Design MiddleWest
      Careful what you wish for ;-) Amazon is a very mixed bag. Some awesome teams, and some absolutely terrible ones. What are you working on at MS?
      Dec 5, 2017
    • Microsoft GChX27
      OP
      Haha yeah I have heard about the bad stories, can’t gain anything without any risk though, there are bad teams here as well. I am in OPG.
      Dec 6, 2017
    • Amazon / Design MiddleWest
      What’s OPG? Pardon my ignorance.

      There’s definitely a great entrepreneurial spirit at Amazon, and concerted efforts throughout to keep a “startup” feel.
      Dec 6, 2017
  • Uber VCoI51
    I don’t see how you would get the job as SPM if you have no PM experience. You should be ok going as PM and get promoted if you really deliver and do well.
    Dec 5, 2017 1
    • Hitachi Vantara / Product
      iotpm

      Hitachi Vantara Product

      PRE
      GoPro, United Technologies
      BIO
      PM for Industrial IoT with strong engineering, entrepreneurial and PM experience
      iotpmmore
      SPM at Amazon is same as PM everywhere else.
      Dec 5, 2017