Where former Amazon employees work now (and why that matters)
“It’s all about the long term”
Jeff Bezos left Wall Street in 1994 and moved to Seattle to build an online bookstore. Bezos launched Amazon.com out of his garage and his fledgling e-commerce company saw immediate success. Within 30 days, “Amazon.com sold books across the United States and in 45 foreign countries; In two months, sales reached $20,000 a week.” (via Biography.com)
In 1995, Amazon received venture capital investment from Kleiner Perkins to help fuel their hyper growth. Amazon went public in ’97 and did $147.8M in sales, an 838% increase over the year before (see ’97 Shareholder letter). Amazon is currently the 4th largest publicly traded company by market cap at $364.3B.
Although Amazon has rarely suffered to generate revenue, the company has historically operated with razor thin margins. This strategy has a lot to do with Bezos’s commitment to long term thinking and a steadfast push for market leadership. Amazon was able to weather the dot-com collapse of the early 2000s and go on to become America’s largest retailer (online or off) and the fastest company ever to reach $100 billion in annual sales.
Amazon’s founding mission was “to be Earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online, and endeavors to offer its customers the lowest possible prices.” Most people would agree that Amazon is living up to their mission.
Bezos emphasized the importance of putting the customer first from the day he started Amazon. Today, he still maintains a public email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) to answer questions for customers.
Working at Amazon
Amazon employs nearly 240,000 people, “twice Apple’s headcount and nearly four times Google’s” (via Fortune). Amazon’s corporate employees receive fairly standard benefits including health insurance, savings plans and vacation time. The company still awards stock options to many new hires as they “want employees to think like owners”.
According to Glassdoor, 63% of Amazon employees would recommend the company to a friend. Of 8,950 reviews on Glassdoor, 268 said “you get to learn a lot in Amazon” and 641 said Amazon is “full of smart people to work with”.
Amazon is a fast-paced company operating in many sectors of the technology industry (e-commerce/retail, Amazon Web Services, hardware — Kindle, Echo, etc.). Amazon, a highly selective employer, utilizes their current employees to vet potential hires in a “bar raiser” program. Bar raisers at Amazon are employees that have typically conducted hundreds of interviews. The stated purpose of the program is to “help bring a consistency of the types of skill sets and perspectives that we’re looking for.” (via WSJ) In a given year, the company typically conducts more than 75,000 interviews to hire 30,000 new workers.
When employees leave Amazon
Amazon hires many of their employees from top universities and other leading companies. When Amazon employees decide to leave the company, they have no shortage of offers from other firms looking to benefit from their knowledge and experience. Former Amazon employees may elect to start a startup in the booming Seattle startup scene or join another hot company. Here are the top 10 Companies Popular with Ex-Amazon Employees.
Top 10 Companies Popular with Ex-Amazon Employees
Visit 500 Miles to see the complete list of 60+ COMPANIES POPULAR WITH EX-AMAZON EMPLOYEES
500 Miles, with 350,000 company profiles and half a million open jobs, is a comprehensive, data-driven job search app that cuts through the noise. Whether you are a fresh graduate, an experienced professional or a mid-career professional looking to switch careers, 500 Miles will help you discover, evaluate and find opportunities that are right for you.
Originally published at blog.500miles.io on August 16, 2016.