BOMBED the bar raiser...

Oct 6, 2019 23 Comments

Had a 5 round interview at Amazon for SDE role.
3 algo rounds, 1 LP round, and 1 system design.
Did pretty good on two of the three algo rounds each with at least 2 questions, came to optimal solutions with little help on some medium / hard questions, felt I impressed them for the most part. And then I BOMBED the bar raiser, medium question, couldn't figure out the trick and by the time he gave me the hint we were out of time and had to move on the the next question, he brought up a hard question but explained it kind of poorly, I think maybe he was a little flustered at that point. I just kept a positive attitude through out, but we didn't really get anywhere with it. He asked me an LP at the end and gave me about 30 seconds to answer and dipped. He wasn't rude about it, we were just not on the same page at all 😂
I felt I did really well on the LP round and all LPs in general.
Did not do well on the system design because my recruiter told me that I wouldn't get a system design question with my 1 YOE...
Reflecting I feel pretty good, it was my first FANG interview. I converted the on-site five weeks ago and learned Python in that time for the interview which I now know better than my native language! Also I'm starting to be more efficient in my normal job, in ways I never thought of in the past, which is another plus! So feel like if I didn't get it this time I know what went wrong and I will likely get it next time 😊
THOUGHTS?! Praise me, dump on me, whatever, let me me hear it!
*PS for the LPs I brought a list of tasks that I had completed at work that were applicable. They didn't mind at all.
**PSS I had a 2.3GPA graduating college don't tell Amazon ;)
1 YOE
TC 90K

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TOP 23 Comments
  • Microsoft Grandpa
    Ugh. “Bar raiser”. Lol. Jesus, have some respect for yourself as a goddamn human being. Fuckin dumb. Fuck that place.
    Oct 6, 2019 2
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      The Microsoft recruiter ghosted me! What choice do I have?! 😂
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Amazon / Eng
      oneleg

      Amazon Eng

      PRE
      Microsoft, Amazon
      onelegmore
      Bar raiser is simply an independent calibrated interviewer. It’s not a special interview in any way. What’s with the hating, Microsoft? It’s a less draconian concept than your AA
      Oct 7, 2019
  • Microsoft / Eng MkUj36
    You're thinking too much of an interview. Amazon or FAANG in general is not a heaven and you won't be a king by working there. Every employee is a glorified slave.
    Oct 6, 2019 1
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      Haha well funny enough I've applied to 60+ companies and Amazon was one of few to give me a chance to interview. Frankly, I'm just interested in getting into some kind of company where I can start working on highly scalable systems.
      The thing is I have so little experience and they seem to be open to having me interview unlike the many other companies I've applied to :S
      Oct 6, 2019
  • Amazon 😁||😆
    The bar raiser asked medium algo question? Isn't that what the coding rounds are for?
    Oct 6, 2019 5
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      Yeah idk each of the algo rounds had at least 2 questions for me.
      I believe this was the bar raiser because he was the most Senior role as far as the Algo rounds went.
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Amazon 😁||😆
      That is not a bar raiser, just another coding round. Likely the round you are calling LP round was your bar raiser.
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      Hopefully that's the case because I feel like I made a great impression with that guy. But now I'm reading that the bar raiser is someone from outside the team? And if that is the case then it was the system design interviewer.
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Amazon 😁||😆
      Always outside the team. The bar raiser doesn't mean it will be your most difficult interview, you should not get intimidated by it. But it would be someone who is very experienced at interviewing.
      Oct 7, 2019
    • Amazon / Eng onePiece77
      BR usually asks a coding question time boxed by 30 minutes and rest 15 minutes in LP. It's HM who does all the LP BS for an hour.
      Oct 7, 2019
  • Booz Allen Hamilton pimpledman
    Can you talk more about your list of tasks? does amazon permit flash cards or notes to reference during interview?
    Oct 6, 2019 4
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      Yeah so I just wrote down a list of tasks that I had completed on one piece of paper in a notebook and nothing more. I didn't ask, I just kind of did it and told them, "this is just a list of recent tasks I've completed incase I need to refresh my memory if that's okay with you" all of them said that was fine. I think if you brought flashcards that might be a little distracting, shuffling through them. One piece of paper was super subtle and I wasnt taking too much time to look for "the perfect fit" just a task that was good enough to fit their example. I think this relieved a lot of pressure for me to find good examples in my brain.
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Amazon 😁||😆
      You brought in your work history on a single piece of paper?

      You mean your resume?
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      Lol yeah pretty much
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Booz Allen Hamilton pimpledman
      Op wrote it down in a notebook — not a resume. good idea.
      Oct 7, 2019
  • Amazon / Eng takeiteazy
    That’s weird. Usually every technical interview has also an LP follow up question. So you might bombed not only bar raiser, but also LP on every technical interview round xD
    Oct 6, 2019 3
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      Oh haha I forgot to mention the other algo guys, I did get LPs and they went well :)
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Ness Technologies __|__
      No way you will know whether u did well on LPs lol
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      Haha I guess I didn't really think about that, I feel like it went well because I seemed to have good examples and answers, good head nodding and good conversation about the examples I provided.
      Oct 6, 2019
  • LinkedIn ugsebkidv
    What does LP mean?
    Oct 6, 2019 2
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      Leadership principals, they are questions specific to Amazon's company culture
      Oct 6, 2019
    • Northrop Grumman / Eng ucrhfb
      OP
      They are obsessed with the customer :)
      Oct 6, 2019

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