Why Amazon? It is critical to have a clear mind about why you decide to head to one of the largest tech companies in the world. Everyone needs good reasons for big career decisions, and every employer expects to hear good reasons for their next expensive hires.
In this article, I will show you 7 reasons why Amazon is among the best places to work and how to answer the question “Why Amazon?” during your interview.
No.1: Good income and generous benefits
Two of the most attractive things to become an Amazonian is decent pay and extremely generous benefits. A general manager at Amazon has an average salary of $150,000, ranging from $51,000 – $172,000 a year. This is a little bit lower comparing to other tech firms, however, pretty high in general.
Amazon offers employees an excellent package of benefits, scored 3.9 out of 5 on Glassdoor. The package consists of medical and prescription drug coverage, dental, vision, life and accident coverage, disability insurance, and 401K contributions.
No.2: Incredibly-fast and well-rounded growth opportunities
The working culture at Amazon is notoriously criticised as “bruised” – overwhelming workload, intense push to reach unreasonable standard performance benchmarks. However, the reality is, Amazon doesn’t expect an average employee.
People say that working a year at Amazon is equivalent to 5 years elsewhere. Every day, Amazonians deal with a tremendous amount of work, from fixing rising problems to innovating old practices, and also keeping up with the continuous change in the tech industry.
Besides, people at Amazon must work at an incredibly fast pace. For instance, at normal companies, it usually takes 3 to 6 months to build or improve a product. However, at Amazon, this length is the typical framework of building from scratch, testing, launching, delivering, and starting to gain revenues.
Due to this work nature, employees have to raise their own bar at work – “I am doing better than 50% of my colleagues” – and constantly strive to catch up with the innovating pace of the whole organisation, bringing out their A-game.
No.3: Best networking circle – working in a pool of talents
It is said that “exceptionally smart people at Amazon are the norm”. All employees here have the exposure to work under great pressure at an exceptionally fast pace, hence training themselves to have a high-achieving attitude towards work and gain knowledge and hands-on experience. Therefore, it builds a great network for life at Amazon, to learn from each other both professionally and personally.
No.4: Competitive good exit options
People may choose Amazon as a kickstart to competitive career growth in the tech industry in the future. This is because Amazonians enjoy impressive exit opportunities thanks to dynamic working culture, well-rounded career opportunities, and high-quality alumni networks. The most typical routes of an ex-Amazonian are Microsoft, Google and Facebook. To employees who stays longer at Amazon have a good chance of making it to Google or Facebook, while those who jump ship early usually goes to Microsoft.
No.5: Autonomy in your own space of work
The special managerial structure and leadership philosophies at Amazon allow employees to have full control of their work in their own space. First, Amazon has an optimised size for a team, called the “2 Pizza rule”, which means “each in-house team working on company growth must be small enough to be fed by only two pizzas”. The rule helps each individual maintain autonomy over projects from end-to-end, encourage direct communications, and avoid lengthy meetings, hence boosting productivity and satisfaction in general. Yet, the autonomy is only shaped within the instructions/tactics/policies of leaders which had been set in the team previously.
No.6: A dynamic and high-achieving culture
All Amazonians speak the same “language of work”. At the very first stage, all employees train the way to talk, think, understand, and improve work through a 14-principle skill set, creating a synchronised professional mindset and behaviours. In short, the skill set can be categorised into 3 main attributes:
- Achieving attitude, of which employees are demanded to be always curious about new possibilities, think big, and insist on delivering outcome at highest standards.
- Efficient communication, by listening attentively, speaking candidly, treating respectfully, and knowing how to challenge the idea when disagree and commit wholly once the decision is determined.
- Work smart, is to aware of ownership in work, bias for action, dive deep to call out all the flaws, and deliver the world-class result in a timely fashion.
No.7: Nice perks for employees
Aside from the great pay and generous benefits, people find working at Amazon is perfectly attractive because of the nice perks it offers. Employees at Amazon can enjoy paid parking, shuttle service, huge Amazon discounts, tuition assistance, transit reimbursement, sports clubs, free on-site gyms and fitness reimbursement, free snacks, happy hours on Friday, daily catered lunch, breakfast and juice bar on Mondays.
During interviews, understanding your personal reasons for the question “Why Amazon?” is already half the battle. The other half is to persuade the interviewer that this particular position at Amazon is really for you. To deliver a convincing answer, these are the strategies you should apply and prepare them in advance.
#1. Understand well the position you are applying to
“Why Amazon?” is a relatively generic question, but it doesn’t mean a generic answer makes you the perfect fit. Here are two tips:
- Making it specific and to-the-point by break the question down into 2 questions: “Why this unit?” and “Why this position?”.
- Making sure that you know the maturity of the unit you are applying to. Usually, there are 3 types of business at Amazon: (1) the brand-new, which are new sectors that have just started and have to build from scratch; (2) the scaling, which already has basic operations (structure, team, product, revenues,…) and wants to scale up; and (3) the optimising, which needs to innovate part of/all process to reach extreme efficiency.
#2. Have your story
Personalize them. Use the insights above with proper modifications in such a way that they highlight your character. That said, only choose the insights that resonate the most with you, especially what is already mentioned in your resume. That way, your answer will also sound more sincere.
#3. Understand the method of delivering properly
The truth is, nobody cares about WHAT particular reasons (or insights) you list out. What they do care about is HOW you deliver them. Hence, the key is to implicitly show off qualifications and traits by structuring your points and collect strong data to back up each point you made.