Why Amazon? Amazon's Most Challenging Job Interview Question

This guide will help you answer one of the most common questions in Amazon job interviews: ‘why Amazon?’ Thus, increasing your chances of getting hired and passing the Amazon interview process. The page includes:

  • The best answer to ‘why Amazon?’
  • The main reason why recruiters love this question so much is.
  • Specific sub-questions that can derive from this question during an interview.
  • Advantages of working for the company: Work culture, Salary, Work benefits, Work-life balance, Safety, and extra perks.

Let’s get started.

why amazon

What Is the Best Answer to Why Amazon?

While there is no perfect ‘Why Amazon’ interview answer that you can memorize, an emotional answer is better than a logical one. The recruiter is trying to gauge your level of motivation, your desire to grow professionally, and if you’re aligned with company values (Amazon leadership principles).

A Few Tips on How to Answer the ‘why Amazon’ Interview Question

  • Don’t be vague; use examples: Mention personal experiences that you had with the company, a specific product or service you like, a certain technology the company uses that may interest you specifically, and company values that you feel a personal connection to.
  • Focus on the uniqueness of the company – How is it different from other big companies in the field like Microsoft and eBay, and what makes it different.
  • Be truthful – Think of real reasons why you appreciate the company’s culture and technology. Don’t offer empty compliments.

Common Mistakes to Avoid when Answering the Why Amazon Interview Question

  • Avoid broad and general answers – Giving a broad answer without getting into the nitty gritty can show the interviewer that you didn’t put a lot of thought into your answer, thus creating a negative first impression.
  • Avoid long answers – The interviewer may lose interest if you give a long answer without getting to the point. So it’s important to practice before your interview and set a time limit to make sure you deliver your answers in a detailed but concise manner.
  • Not using structure in your answer – One of Amazon’s recommendations for dealing with interviewer behavioral questions is to use the STAR method, which means they expect you to come prepared both in terms of knowledge and delivery.
  • Avoid putting an emphasis on pay benefits such as a salary; instead, emphasize your commitment to your work, professional growth, and company culture.

'Why Amazon'?' What Motivates the Question?

As mentioned previously, the reason the interviewer asks you that question is to see if you’re:

  • Committed.
  • Motivated.
  • Fit to company values and culture.

He is looking beyond company status, Salary, and benefits. He wants to know if you applied for the right reasons, if you’ll be there in the long haul and if your personal beliefs match those of the company.

Amazon's Leadership Principles

The rise of Amazon as a global leader in retail did not happen overnight. The company began as a small online bookstore, establishing itself through the implementation of values referred to as Amazon’s leadership principles as a way to create a strong work culture among its employees.

.Below are amazon’s 16 leadership principles:

Customer Obsession

The company’s continuous growth is driven by customer obsession. Customer obsession brings customer loyalty that keeps them coming back and buying company products over and over again.


Amazon leaders expect employees to think as company owners and act on behalf of the entire company, meaning thinking more broadly than their formal job title.

Invent and Simplify

Amazon encourages its employees to innovate and find new methods to deliver products to their customers in a better and more efficient manner.

Are Right, A Lot

Well-informed decision-making is the whole mark of good decision-making; that is why it is expected of company employees to think things through and seek diverse perspectives before taking action in order to avoid unnecessary pitfalls and mistakes.

Learn and Be Curious

Self-improvement is key to a professional who becomes good in his trade. An employee who is always curious and wants to learn more will do better than someone who is satisfied with his current knowledge and skills.

Hire and Develop the Best

A key value in Amazon is to recognize exceptional talent, hire the people who have the most potential for success, and provide them with optimal tools and resources.

Insist on the Highest Standards

It is expected of leaders to deliver products of the highest quality without cutting corners.

Think Big

Thinking big means pushing yourself out and beyond what was previously thought possible and inspiring other workers to do the same. Real leaders offer a bold vision that inspires action.

Bias for Action

While right, a lot suggests you should think things through before taking action. Bias for action encourages workers to make quick judgment calls even when faced with limited information. The logic is that most decisions are reversible and won’t cause long-lasting damage; therefore, it is better, when in doubt, to have a bias for action, apply calculated risk-taking, and be willing to try stuff out.


Amazon believes that when facing situations with limited resources, workers will find ways to be resourceful and self-sufficient.

Earn Trust

Honesty, trust, and respect are the guiding principles of Amazon. Leaders are urged to admit their mistakes, be vocally self-critical, and listen to their subordinates no matter what their position or status is. Real leaders listen attentively, communicate honestly, and treat others with respect; if you do that, your success will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Dive Deep

Adopting this value means that you are aware of the details and the different aspects of your field of responsibility, allowing you to stay critical, especially when new data contradicts common company beliefs.

Have a Backbone; Disagree and Commit

If you truly believe that a certain decision is a mistake, it is your duty to respectfully disagree and not compromise because of social pressure.

Deliver Results

Delivering results means focusing on the most important drivers of income and delivering them in a timely manner despite setbacks. Leaders focus on the key components of their organization, producing them in a high-quality manner.

Strive to be Earth's Best Employer

Your responsibility as a leader is to create an environment that promotes employee well-being. You should always strive to keep team members’ interests in mind, making sure they grow as professionals.

Success and Scale Bring Broad Responsibility

This value puts the spotlight on your responsibility to consider how your actions affect things beyond your immediate sphere of influence. You should always strive to do better for your community, planet, and future generations.

Describing the Characteristics of The Position

When applying for a specific position, it’s also important to analyze and understand why and how you want to grow professionally in that position and how working for amazon can help you achieve that.

For example, if you are applying for a data scientist position, you may choose to describe the characteristics of the position in the following way:

“There are a few important reasons why I want to work at Amazon. I enjoy designing products that help solve real problems for real people, and I would like to work for a company that puts solving the problems of its clients as a top priority.”

“Throughout my career, I have focused on finding useful implementations of data. I am interested in using Amazon’s extensive database to identify the problems and difficulties of its customers. That’s why joining your team appeals to me. I feel you have a strong desire to serve clients in new and original ways.”

“Lastly, I have a friend who works as a cloud support engineer at Amazon. He has told me about the learning opportunities you have here and how he grew professionally since he started working for the company.”

“My deep desire is to be the best at what I do, and I will prefer a company that will provide me with all the best tools and best teachers that will help me improve my current skills even further to become a better Data Scientist.”

Ask Yourself the Following 'Why Amazon' Follow up Questions

Being prepared for the ‘Why Amazon’ interview question includes having the ability to answer a variety of Why Amazon’ follow-up questions.

Try to answer the following question. Research the company the job position further if you need to:

  • Is there anything else about this company that interests you beyond the paycheck?
  • Amazon has a lot of great products; what are your favorites?
  • Why have you applied to this specific role, and what is the most interesting thing about it?
  • In what areas do you excel professionally?
  • Can you tell me how this role aligns with your professional ambitions?
  • What do you like the least about amazon?

When searching out the answers, brainstorm some specific ideas and look at the job description. Write it down to a short 2-3 paragraph response sample answer that you feel will give the interviewer a full and complete response.

Why Work for Amazon?

Why Amazon is an important question that you should answer not only to your recruiter but to yourself as well.

Below you’ll find all the details of the different aspects of Amazon’s working experience.

Amazon Work Culture

The Work Culture in Amazon is a day-one culture. Day 1 is a term used to describe a company culture that is disruptive and experimental with revolutionary ideas that have the potential to be world-changing and bring more value to the customer.

The Cultural DNA of Amazon is as follows:

Focus on your customers.
Maintain a Day 1 culture by building and adhering to the correct processes.
Ensure that every decision you make is high-quality and quick.
Don’t be afraid to experiment, disrupt and embrace new trends.
Take risks, fail, and learn from your mistakes.
Imagine a world one to two years from now when your product is being used by customers.

Interested in finding out more? Visit the Amazon Work Culture guide.

Amazon Salaries

An Amazon salary offer is usually presented in the following way:

A base salary.
A bonus for signing.
Equity in the company is issued in the form of restricted stock units.

There are a total of 12 pay levels at Amazon, and they vary by position. Lower pay levels(4 and 5) are usually for newly hired employees, while higher levels are usually granted to senior employees.

Visit the Amazon Salaries page to find out more.

Amazon Work Benefits

Amazon offers a large variety of work benefits to its employees; these are the main ones:

Medical Benefits Plans

There are five types of medical benefits plans. These include

  • A Shared Deductible Plan.
  • Health Savings Plan.
  • Standard Plan.
  • In-Network Only Plan.
  • Kaiser Permanente HMO.

Financial Benefits

  • Amazon 401(k) Plan.
  • Employee Restricted Stock Units.
  • Flexible Spending Accounts.

Insurance Plans

  • Disability Insurance.
  • Life and Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance.
  • Critical Illness & Personal Accident Insurance.
  • Homeowners, Renters, Auto, and Pet Insurance.

Check out the Amazon Benefits page to read more about employee benefits the company has to offer.

Amazon Work-Life Balance

There are a few basic ways in which Amazon employees can enjoy work-life balance.

  • A guaranteed paycheck with payment for overtime.
  • Paid time off.
  • A variety of full and part-time positions will allow you to juggle between school, friends, and other activities.

For more information on Amazon work-life balance opportunities, go here.

Amazon Safety

The health and safety of employees are a top priority for the company. There are a variety of programs that Amazon created to ensure the safety of its employees; these include:

  • Ongoing safety training of workers on equipment and processes designed to keep them safe.
  • Amazon’s “Distance Assistant” technology shows green or red circles around people who are getting too close, reminding them to move away in real-time.
  • Any person who violates social distancing rules is addressed and coached promptly by Social Distancing Ambassadors.
  • Safety during shifts is advised and coached by managers and supervisors.
  • To convey important safety instructions, we send regular emails, newsletters, and text messages.

Looking for more information about the subject? Visit the Amazon Safety page for more information.

Why Amazon - Extra Perks

Amazon has some extra perks it offers its employees, such as a more flexible work schedule and savings opportunities. The following are some of the most important.

Amazon Work Hours

Some of the positions offered by Amazon include:

  • Early morning shifts starting from 3 a.m.
  • Daily shifts start from 6 a.m.
  • Night shifts start from 6 p.m.
  • Weekends start from Friday at 7:30 p.m.

Amazon also offers seasonal and flexible schedule jobs.

Check out the Amazon Work Hours Page to find the job that will fit your schedule.

Amazon Employee Discount

Amazon offers a discount of 10% to employees that complete a month working for the company. The discount only applies to products that are sold by the company directly, not those sold by 3rd party sellers that use the company platform.

Amazon Working from home

Amazon also offers work-from-home jobs, mostly in its customer service division. It has a system that allows remote workers to access data and have the same work experience that office workers have.

This includes:

  • Stay connected to your colleges with mailing lists, meetups, and discussion groups.
  • Use the AWS ecosystem to get guidance for specific roles and responsibilities.
  • Providing IT, travel, emergency information, expenses, and other necessary support as soon as possible.

Click to see more relevant remote work information.

Helpful Resources

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Useful PDF Guide for your Amazon Interview

The PDF guide includes the most common questions and answers you might be asked during an interview, along with complete instructions on how to behave during one.

Tell Me About Yourself Interview Question

The following video explains the nuts and bolts of how to act in a live interview as well as answers the burning question ‘Tell me about yourself‘.