Amazon Phone Interview: What to Expect & How to Pass It

In this article, we will discuss all the different things you need to know to pass the Amazon Phone interview.

This includes:

  • An explanation of the different kinds of phone interviews that exist at Amazon.
  • How to prepare for them efficiently.
  • An explanation of the role that the Amazon Phone Interview plays in the company’s hiring process.
  • Lots more

So let’s dive in and start getting ready!

amazon phone interview

What Does the Amazon Phone Interview Consist of?

The Amazon Phone Interview is the next stage of the Amazon Hiring interview process after you pass the online assessments. It contains behavioural and sometimes technical questions.

How Hard Is the Phone Interview?

The Amazon Phone Interview is often actually a sequence of two phone interviews.

The first interview is not very challenging, and can even be somewhat friendly as the goal is to verify information about your personal details, work experience, and skills.

However, a more detailed interview then follows that is substantially more difficult.

The main Amazon Phone Interview is considered very challenging partly because of its length (it usually lasts between 45 minutes to an hour long).

And also because, unlike interviews at smaller companies, where the purpose is mainly to just help the hiring manager get a ‘feel’ of sorts for the candidate, the interview is actually a test of the candidate’s character strength, and sometimes also their technical skills.

How to Get Ready for Amazon’s Phone Interview?

The Amazon Phone Interview is much like the other stages of the Amazon hiring process in that you should not just expect your knowledge and talent to carry the day for you. You need to actively prepare for the interview. Here are some pointers that will help you prepare for the phone interview.

#1 Learn About Amazon’s Culture and Values

A large element of the Amazon Phone Interview is ‘behavioral’. While that sounds complicated, really, what the company wants is to make sure that you will be a good fit for the Amazon workplace and the values that Amazon wants its employees to have.

To make sure you will do well in the Amazon Phone Interview, you have to make sure that you have a good understanding of Amazon’s workplace culture and the ideas that the company is founded on. A big part of this is learning about the 16 Amazon Leadership Principles, something we will talk about in greater detail later on.

#2 Learn About the Job You’re Applying to

The Amazon Phone Interview, like all aspects of the hiring process, varies depending on the particulars of the position that you’re applying for. Different positions make use of different skill sets and also different behavioral qualities.

To make sure you will succeed in the phone interview, you should research the specific job description both on the company’s own website, and online, where you can find a lot of pointers and advice posted by people who have worked for Amazon in the past or otherwise have experience with the Amazon Hiring Process.

#3 Find Out What Questions You’ll Likely Be Asked

While preparing for the Amazon Phone Interview, it’s important to learn what you’re preparing for. Interviews for different roles will focus on different types of questions. Interviews will focus on different behavioral subjects depending on what character traits a given role needs, and interviews for technical roles will also involve questions that evaluate the candidate’s technical skills.

If you learn about the role you’re applying for online, you’ll probably find examples of phone interview questions that other people who applied for the same role were asked, which will make it easier for you to prepare for the interview.

#4 Prepare for the Technical Questions Thoroughly (for Technical Jobs)

Candidates that are applying for technical jobs, such as software developer positions or maintenance roles, will need to answer questions that challenge their technical knowledge. Applicants for SDE positions might face a separated phone coding interview, which will usually include whiteboard coding and going over your online assessment.

#5 Get to Know the 16 Leadership Principles Inside Out

Amazon’s Leadership Principles are a core element of the company’s workplace culture. They appear on posters in Amazon offices, Amazon employees go through training to better implement the Leadership Principles, and candidates for Amazon jobs are expected to demonstrate their ability to apply the Leadership Principles to daily workplace situations. For Amazon, the 16 Leadership Principles are a very serious matter.

Click to see a detailed explanation of Amazon’s 16 Principles of leadership.

What to Expect on Each Stage of the Phone Interview?

Getting familiar with the different stages of the phone interview is key for preparation and your level of comfort when facing the hiring manager on the other side of the line.

Before the Phone Interview

Your interview will be scheduled in advance. You should take advantage of that fact to make preparations. Make sure you sleep well the night before the interview, to ensure you are calm and well-rested. Have a pen and paper available in front of you when the interview starts, as well as a copy of your resume and other relevant documents you might be asked about.

If you are living with family or roommates, tell them ahead of time you will be interviewed, so that they know that you’re not to be disturbed during that time. Ensure you’re in a calm and quiet environment, free of distractions as much as possible.

Finally, make sure to be seated in a comfortable and confident posture – although the interviewer cannot, of course, see you, your posture affects the way you talk and handle yourself during the interview.

Behavioral Questions

The main focus of the Amazon Phone Interview is so-called “behavioral interview questions”. In other words, the hiring manager wants to talk about how you handled different workplace situations or the ways you would deal with hypothetical situations. This is to ensure that you are a good fit for your role and for Amazon’s workplace culture.

Tips for the Behavioral Questions

  • Amazon wants you to talk about your experience in the context of the Amazon Leadership Principles. You should study those and improve your knowledge of them.
  • You should also learn about the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) format, which is the preferred format at Amazon and some other big companies for interview answers.

Technical Questions (Technical Jobs Only)

While most of the questions asked during the Amazon Phone Interview are behavioral in nature, some roles, such as development, AWS, or maintenance roles, might require you to answer some technical questions.

Candidates could be asked to define a technical term or discuss how they would resolve a technical issue. Candidates for software development roles might be asked to discuss a coding assignment they completed earlier in the hiring process.

You should probably look over your materials about the subjects that are related to the job you are applying for. (The exact specifics would, of course, differ by position).

Last Few Minutes - What Questions Should You Ask the Interviewer?

This is a good time to ask the interviewer questions about the workplace (although it is quite too early to start talking about wages!). It will reflect well on you if you ask questions about which skills are needed for the role or how to perform better in the role if you get hired.

What to Expect After You Finish the Phone Interview?

Following every interview, you’ll either get a response or you won’t.

Response Time

Amazon typically replies to candidates within two business days.

What to Do If You Got No Response?

You should follow up with the hiring manager who originally sent you the interview invite using the email address or other contact details they gave you.

Tips to Help You Calm Your Nerves Before the Interview

There are several ways for you to reduce stress before the interview. Getting enough rest before the interview is very important, as is, of course, studying in advance.

It’s also a good idea to keep cue cards on the desk to make sure you don’t get nervous and forget important details.

Another good idea is to be well-dressed – even though it’s a phone interview and the hiring manager cannot see you, it will give you a confidence boost and help you feel more professional!


This advice covers, in summary, all of the main things you need to know to do well in the Amazon Phone interview. As you can see, it can be quite challenging even for an experienced candidate – on the other hand, you should not feel discouraged. You can beat this challenge with determination and hard work!