Should I take my deferred Amazon new grad offer in the current market conditions?

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Entry-Level Software Engineer at Taro Community25 days ago

I have a new grad offer from Amazon, which was forcefully deferred earlier this year.

I currently work as an SRE (which I don't want long-term), and my offer is for an SDE role in the same team I interned at when I was there pre-layoffs. Plus despite me working for >6 months elsewhere, they're not increasing my comp in any way.

I'm attracted to the Amazon job since it's a SWE role and that's something I want career-wise, but given that the company and current economic situation have been kind of unstable, I'm hesitant to join. Does anyone have any advice for me on how to navigate this? I'm on a student Visa so I guess that's why the threat of layoffs is a bit higher in my eyes.

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    Engineer @ Robinhood
    25 days ago

    If your goal is to increase compensation and job security, the best path forwards would be to start interviewing and look to secure other offers. Within your current situation it seems like the variables you want to budge aren't budging, so if you want something to change you need another offer on the table.

    No one's really that safe from layoffs in this economy, but big tech does have larger war chests. So Amazon's not that bad of an option if you just want to settle on a job that's relatively safe.

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    Tech Lead/Manager at Meta, Pinterest, Kosei
    25 days ago

    I like the greedy approach to career growth. If you feel like an opportunity gets you meaningfully closer to your long-term goals, take it. Waiting for the perfect opportunity doesn't work since (1) it may never come and (2) the tech industry moves so fast that your definition of 'perfect' will evolve.

    Based on this, I think you should take the Amazon role because:

    • The Amazon brand is powerful and will open up future options
    • Transitioning to a software engineering role now will ensure that you stay in the SWE track.

    I would not worry about the compensation not increasing despite your 6 months of work experience. The delta would be small/symbolic anyway, perhaps $10K-$20K. The above factors are more important this early in your career.

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    Tech Lead @ Robinhood, Meta, Course Hero
    25 days ago

    Overall, I think the Amazon offer is pretty solid and you should take it. Here's why:

    • It's for a SWE role, so it lets you make that transition
    • Since you're going back to a team you were on before, you're returning to a place where you have existing relationships and social capital (assuming some group of the original folks are still there)
    • It's Amazon, one of the greatest tech companies in the world
    • Big Tech is probably the most optimal way to start your career as we talk about here: Why You Should Start Your Career At A Big Tech Company

    That being said, it's not like you need to put all your eggs in 1 basket and just blindly hope Amazon pans out. You should interview with other companies to fill in that >6 month gap where you won't have Amazon and as backups. If you're working at a solid place already and the Amazon offer gets rescinded 2 weeks before start or something, you'll be okay!

    I'm on a student Visa so I guess that's why the threat of layoffs is a bit higher in my eyes.

    Everyone is understandably down on Big Tech nowadays with the massive layoffs (and there will be a few more waves over the next 6 months probably), but I personally wouldn't worry about it too much for the following reasons:

    • The worst is probably over - In particular, the share prices have stabilized and the US economy is really close to the target of 2% inflation. I don't think there's more than 1 new rate hike coming.
    • FAANG is crushing it again - Pretty much all of them have rallied back, returning into the range of their all-time high (ATH). Microsoft and Nvidia have even surpassed their ATH. This is largely driven by AI, which I do believe is over-hyped somewhat but should be here to stay (definitely more than something like crypto). From anecdotal evidence, Big Tech hiring is slowly ramping up again as well, even among newgrads.
    • The tech economy will be better when you start - 6 months is a long time in the tech world, and the tech industry generally recovers faster than people think as it's so full of talented innovators. While the tech economy definitely sucks now, I'm sure it'll be much better after 9-12 more months.

    Check out these resources as well:

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    Entry-Level Software Engineer [OP]
    Taro Community
    25 days ago

    Thanks for all the insightful responses!

    @Alex, just to clarify, my offer was pushed >6 months ago, and I’m currently working at another company. My Amazon joining date is coming up in a couple months, and that’s what I’m wondering about. If this changes anything WRT your answer, please let me know!

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    Tech Lead @ Robinhood, Meta, Course Hero
    25 days ago

    @Alex, just to clarify, my offer was pushed >6 months ago, and I’m currently working at another company.

    Ahh, got it. It's nice that you already have employment then as a foundation - I think this is better than what I thought!

    Overall, my suggested action is the same: I think you should take Amazon.

    As an additional anecdotal point, one of my good friends is an SDE 2 at Amazon and their team just took on a bunch of newgrad SDE 1s. I really don't think layoffs are a huge deal anymore, especially with Amazon approaching $1.5T market cap again. Layoff chances will definitely be much lower than industry average.

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