Holly Lee Coaching

Amazon Onboarding Process – First Week

For my customers who landed an offer at Amazon, you should be ready for the next step that covers the details about the onboarding process at Amazon. The tips and details I’m going to be sharing in this article cover some of the common themes that are recurrent everywhere regardless of the geographical location. These themes regarding the onboarding process range from software engineering to operational manager, and even include leadership positions at Amazon. 

The onboarding process at Amazon is different from every other company in the world. The onboarding process is the first thing that your manager will do. But sometimes Amazon is so busy that the hiring manager foregoes the decision to put your onboarding package together.

Onboarding Process at Amazon

Now you may ask what an onboarding package is. Well, for starters onboarding package is one of the reasons why Amazon is amazing. All you have to do is download a template and go in there and fill in the blanks. For instance, your name, your start day, your position, your team. This also includes the organization you are supporting and your peers. The purpose of this is to guide you through the first couple of weeks or even months to help you come up to speed and get familiar with your work.

I also want to remind you that you don’t have to follow everything to a T to be successful in your first week. If you are unable to use your best judgment then my Star Interview Accelerator, an eight week program might be of help to you if you want something slow-paced.

My Experience as a Recruiting Leader in My First Week at Amazon

I am really known to spoil the people I work with. If you have trouble with working with someone like me, then you need to take a step back and think twice. Once you get hired by Amazon, it is all about professionalism and hard work so you need to pay attention to what I’m about to tell you. When you receive your onboarding package, make sure to use your best judgment.

And this is a non-negotiable aspect. With Amazon, there will be very little time for you to ruminate over things and take things smoothly. This is Amazon we’re talking about so you need to do it quickly. I would suggest you hang out with the people who were in your role previously, or preferably your peers.

Because managers are super busy at Amazon, you don’t get a chance to turn to them for advice or tips. I came across a lot of people at the company who were clueless as to why they joined Amazon in a certain position. I was placed in a leadership recruiting position for them. In addition to this, I was an interview trainer on top of being a recruiting leader for five-plus years.

I’ve worked for multiple organizations worldwide and helped to build their companies with my experience of working at Amazon. If I had to describe Amazon in a single word, I’d call it self-service. The good thing about self-service is that I don’t have to have somebody telling me what to do all the time. It allows me to figure out my template to follow through.

How To Be Successful Starting Your Day 1 At Amazon

Experience of a new recruit at Amazon

The most important thing to keep in mind is to not slack on your first day at any cost. Treat your first day very seriously. You will not have a couple of months or even half a year to warm up. You need to get warm-up on the first day at Amazon. And trust me, every single day at Amazon is going to be like that for you. For example, here is a trick question for you that is also on the application. The question asks if you’re a self-starter. Furthermore, it also asks if you need inspiration, or do you need handholding. The purpose of this question is to assess your ability to move forward independently.

Staying on Top of Your Game

I was at Amazon for over six years and let me tell you it is not a place for people who rely on others to do the work for them. Let me remind you that if you are unable to do the work yourself even after you land that offer, then without the passion and drive for work you will not be able to last for that long. 

I remember there has not been a single day where I sat back and chill and have my coffee. Working at Amazon is a full-time commitment and you don’t get to have it the other way.

Keeping Up With Behavioural Questions in Interviews

When you’re interviewing with a company, make sure to land job invites from all FAANG companies instead of only Amazon. I’ve had clients before who have landed job offers with Apple, Startup, PayPal, Oracle, and a lot of different companies. That is also where branding and networking come in. Good branding and networking. My clients who have used the same things I taught them regarding Amazon are now working in other companies under the Big Tech. The bottom line is, all the company uses behavioral questions. One way or another, the behavioral questions are very similar.

Even if they are not asking you the exact questions. One most commonly asked question is: “Tell me about a time you have solved the most complex problem?” Or on some other occasion, the question may sound like “Well, tell me about a project that you are really proud of.” It’s not very different from each other. Amazon wouldn’t even care if you have a college degree or not. It’s that simple.

I have seen a lot of people work at Amazon without a college degree. My executive in Bar Racer, who doesn’t even have a bachelor’s degree in computer science works as an engineering executive. Amazon only cares if you’re productive or not and that is all that matters to them. It wants smart and self-reliant people. And it really shows when you are being assessed during interview screening. That’s the reason why there are four to five different panels asking you questions based on specific types of competencies, such as leadership principle questions, or behavioral questions. They are quite serious about their interviews because they are aware that in the future you will need to demonstrate excellent cognitive skills that help you professionally.

Final Thoughts

I had a great time working for such kinds of players at Amazon just because it worked for me. Well, that doesn’t mean it will work for you too. Even after I quit my job at the company, I’m still very happy that I got to spend my time on Amazon. And that experience is what allows me to coach you the way that I am right now. It’s not a pipedream to land a job at Amazon, but you need to know that these guys only hire the best of the best, people who get things done and bring great business success.