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Should I transfer internally to SDE II at Amazon or look elsewhere?

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Solutions Architect II at Amazon2 years ago

I came out of school wanting a traditional SWE role but ended up taking a non-SWE role with Amazon due to its name brand and strong TC. This role doesn't have too much coding, so I want to switch to the SDE track within Amazon.

I'm wondering if it makes sense to pursue avenues outside of Amazon as well. My concern is that after losing the reputation I have within Amazon, I won’t be able to get a SW2 role, getting a SW1 role instead.

I interviewed internally for SDE2 in Q1 2022, but didn’t pass the Leetcode portion. However, I was told that I was pretty close to meeting the SDE 2 bar, which is why I am optimistic about this path.



(1 comment)
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    Robinhood, Meta, Course Hero, PayPal
    2 years ago
    • Obviously transferring internally to SDE2 is going to be the best option. You will get to maintain all the relationships you have alongside your understanding of how Amazon works.
    • However, it’s good to avoid putting all your eggs in 1 basket, so you should interview at other companies if you can. I’ve seen sub-optimal TC adjustments when folks switch from non-SWE tracks into SWE, so the offers from these companies can be used as leverage to bolster an SDE 2 transfer. Better yet, if you get enough offers, you can negotiate one up to SDE 2.
    • SDE 1 -> SDE 2 doesn’t take too long. It’s not the end of the world to get into another top company as a SDE 1 and then work your work up to SDE 2.
    • When it comes to internal mobility, Meta is the strongest among Big Tech from what I’ve seen. Many make it from E3 -> E4 in just 1 year, some even just 1 half. It’s possible that this can be done in the time it takes to move to SDE 2 internally.