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How To Answer Amazon’s Trickiest Interview Question?


Landing a job at a global firm like Amazon, that boasts a revenue of 46,980 crores (USD) would be one of the most enticing parts of a programmer’s life. Just like their reputation, their recruitment process also requires a lot of effort to get through.

Speaking of recruitment, the interview process will be arduous because the company aims to only recruit the finest candidate.

To stress the former point, even the CEO of Amazon Jeff Bezos has said that he’d rather hire no one than hire someone who wouldn’t be the best fit.

Hence, as a programmer, cracking Amazon’s interview must be taken seriously and your preparation must be truly focussed. If you ask any current Amazon employee to share their Amazon Interview Experience, they’ll let you know how hard they worked to get the offer.

With that said, in this blog we will share about how the recruitment process will work, how you can answer the trickiest question as well as some tips.

Now, let’s get prepared to have the best Amazon interview experience!

Recruitment process at Amazon

Amazon’s interview process usually comprises three interview rounds, but it could also vary based on the job role you’re applying for. Every round lasts an hour, where the first few minutes are for your introduction followed by the interviewer’s questions.

Online Test

In this round, you will be posed with the following types of assessments:

  • Work style: This round would take 10 to 20 minutes to finish. This test consists of questions that will check your work style principles in an office setting.
  • Work Sample Simulations: This round can take anywhere between 20 minutes and an hour.In this round, you will be asked questions that will check your problem-solving capabilities.

Phone screen

In this round, you will be asked technical questions by an interviewer via phone call. You will also be asked behavioural questions to see whether you’re a good fit for the company’s culture. Behavioural questions are essential, and they will be asked in almost all companies.

Note: Behavioural questions are extremely important for every company’s interview. Be it to have a smooth Google, Adobe or Paytm Interview Experience, one must focus on behavioural questions.

On-site interview

More than 2 or 3 Amazon employees will be present to interview you in this round. It is usually done on-site, but it can also be done virtually.This round will mainly focus on your technical knowledge. They will also pose the trickiest Amazon question, “Why Amazon?” in this round.

Let us now see how you can answer trickiest Amazon interview questions.

How to answer Amazon’s interview questions?

It’s essential to understand the kinds of questions that will be asked before your Amazon interview. You should pay special attention to topics involving algorithms and problem-solving.

To help you to pass the technical round, here are some commonly repeated questions and how you can answer them. For the best Amazon interview experience, make sure to just follow the below answer as an example and not say the exact answers below.

1. What is a data structure?

Data structures are used to process, arrange and get back data that has been stored in it. There are basic and complex data structure types, both used to arrange data. It helps users to have access to all data that has been stored there since. Both humans and machines can understand the information that is stored in these data structures.

2. Explain Hashing

Hashing is a technique for converting a set of key values into a set of array indexes. For example, you can use hash tables to establish correlated data storage. Additionally, the data index is found by giving its key values.

3. How can you search for an element? Explain search operation.

When searching for an element, begin searching from the root node and search for the element in the left subtree if the data is less than the key value. Looking for the element in the correct subtree is called a search operation.

4. Define Tower of Hanoi.

The Tower of Hanoi is a puzzle made up of three towers and more than one ring. When all rings of different sizes are stacked on top of each other, the huge disc is always underneath the little disc. The main goal is to move the disc tower from one peg to another without damaging its features.

5. Which is your favourite programming language and why?

You have to start by saying which language, say, C++ and give a general introduction to it. Then move on to explain the reason why you like it by using your previous C++ based projects or accomplishments.

6. Define dynamic programming?

Dynamic programming in simple words is an approach that helps in breaking down complicated problems in subproblems to help with resolution.

7. Explain Algorithms in your own words.

Algorithm is basically a set of rules that are used to solve any problem. Start by saying how using algorithms alone can help one to get a result when cracking a code. You can also say out an example problem and explain how by following the algorithm, you will get the output.

Tips to prepare for an Amazon interview questions

To prepare for big companies’ interviews, you’ll have to schedule your time to learn all possible aspects. In fact, be it to have the best Amazon interview experience, Google interview experience, Salesforce interview experience, or any company, these tips will help you!

Learn and revise

Whether you’re a beginner or a professional, learning more about data structures and algorithms will only benefit you. Make sure you revise what you already know about DSA and learn something new that you’ve so far never read. You must be super strong with your basics like array, string, binary tree and such as interviewers will ask questions related to it.

Make use of mock tests

There are ample mock coding tests, coding sheets, mock interviews both paid and unpaid to help you get a good grasp of DSA. Repeatedly working on these will help you to spot your weaknesses and make a way for you to strengthen those. You can also enroll in DSA courses which will open the world of tech gurus giving you extensive learning tips.

Prepare a schedule

Sometimes we might miss out some concept of DSA. So always make a roadmap or a schedule to ensure you cover all concepts of DSA and other related aspects. This will keep your mind stress-free as well because you’ll be sure of covering everything important.

Discussion with Amazon current/ex employee

There are various former Amazon employees who are ready to provide a good insight into the world of Amazon. So seeking them and clearing your doubts will benefit you well. Additionally, if you know someone who is currently working at Amazon, asking for their help will also help you vastly.

Make sure that you learn about Amazon’s work culture, how the employees are and what the company expects from the employees.

Final thoughts

It is no wonder that the Amazon interview is going to be pretty tough. But what matters is not how difficult the interview is going to be, but how well you’re going to prepare.

practice well, because that alone can get you an offer at Amazon. Take enough time to prepare and confidently attend the interview.

All the best!