Getting promoted at AWS?

Apr 28, 2018 26 Comments

Non-tech worker here. In my current role, I have 2.5 years tenure with my company, plenty of seniority and am highly respected throughout the organization (small company, less than 500 employees). Think "big fish, small pond." In total, I have 6+ years of experience in my trade with a recent master's degree (not a top-tier program).

However, the work itself has become dull, not challenging and opportunities to move up are years away due to the small company size.

Recently, a recruiter at AWS reached out to me for a role which looked interesting by the job description. But in my first phone screen with the hiring manager, I found that the responsibilities are a level down from what I'm doing today. This is by virtue of the fact that I'm a team of 1 in my current position and the team at AWS would be a team of 35 people, so there's less ownership relatively speaking. I am continuing to move forward through the process and have gotten strong buying signals that on-site is coming soon. (He told me directly that I raise the bar based on my experience)

It is my dream to work at Amazon, but I'm concerned about entering at a potentially lower level. In AWS, how likely is it that if I work hard and prove myself I can work up to a promotion? Is it reasonable to expect that in 1-2 years' time this may be possible?

Note: I am hesitant to try and negotiable a higher level because I was recently rejected by Amazon for another position that was a higher level. So I feel like this is the best path for me to break into FANG and that it will be worth it for the experience.

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TOP 26 Comments
  • What is L6 and L7 in the AWS Solutions Architect area?
    Apr 28, 2018 5
    • Any idea on TC for Sr SA(L6) and Principal SA (L7)?
      Apr 28, 2018
    • Morgan Stanley ninja007
      Interested
      May 5, 2018
  • Amazon Lvl9
    This is typical for Amazon and esp AWS. The business is very large and growing fast and you will find opportunities to step up within and outside of your official role. Think big fish in the ocean... Promo timeline depends on the level your going into. L5 to L6, one year very possible. L6 to L7 takes 2-3 years. L7+ same as L6 or more. Based on your post you shouldn’t come in under L6.
    Apr 28, 2018 2
    • OP
      Thanks, I appreciate your insight... I think this could be L4 actually but hope it would be L5. As an external candidate do I have any sway or influence on the leveling?
      Apr 28, 2018
    • OP
      Btw I did ask the recruiter what level the position was but she said that's confidential as it's determined throughout the interview process
      Apr 28, 2018
  • Amazon
    dududu

    Amazon

    PRE
    Microsoft
    dududumore
    Definitely join at least at L5, L4 is mostly for fresh grad
    Apr 28, 2018 1
    • OP
      Thank you
      Apr 28, 2018
  • Amazon Lvl9
    Push for L5 as it affects your comp band. It’s a mix of your experience, how you show leadership during the on site, and the role you are interviewing for. If Amazon is your goal, then take what is offered, get a mentor, have a strong relationship with your manager and you can be promoted fairly quickly.
    Apr 28, 2018 1
    • OP
      Solid advice. Thanks!
      Apr 28, 2018
  • Amazon / Eng
    nakamichi

    Amazon Eng

    PRE
    Amazon
    nakamichimore
    I don’t wanna sound too much of an idealist, but well if you do work hard, it’s totally possible.

    I joined AWS about 8 months back at an entry level role (with 1yr exp) and got promoted pretty recently.

    AWS as a whole is tough to comment, but there are certain verticals that Amazon invests more in, which obviously means better opportunities and a defined growth path
    Apr 28, 2018 1
    • OP
      Thanks a lot, this is insightful!
      Apr 28, 2018
  • OP
    Hi everyone, update: I just found out from an internal source that the target level for this position is L4. How do I "push" for the higher level?
    May 1, 2018 7
    • Amazon
      dududu

      Amazon

      PRE
      Microsoft
      dududumore
      Just nail the interview.. if you do great, they will bump up the level.. best of luck
      May 1, 2018
    • OP
      Ok thanks a lot
      May 1, 2018
  • Amazon kJdq03
    Forget it. Stay where you are. The other comments about being promoted are hogwash.
    Apr 28, 2018 1
    • OP
      Care to elaborate?
      Apr 28, 2018
  • VMware Highway
    They can definitely level up depending upon the quality of your answers during on-site interview. Phone screen is usually to check for red flags and if the candidate is coachable
    Jun 6, 2018 0

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