Everything You Need to Know About Amazon SDE Salary
Last Updated on December 1, 2022
Amazon is one of the biggest employers in the world. At a close second to Walmart, the online retailer employs more than one million part-time and full-time staff.
Amazon was originally solely an online store, but it has branched out into other digital products and services, such as online publishing and Amazon Web Services.
Software engineers are responsible for Amazon’s growth and success. They are the people who work diligently behind their monitors to ensure that Amazon is always working smoothly.
But what about working at Amazon as a software development engineer? How much does Amazon pay them? And what are the benefits of working at Amazon?
Below, in this article, we’ll answer all these questions and provide tips on how to prepare for the exam and interview.
What Is a Software Development Engineer?
At Amazon, a software development engineer is someone who develops, designs, and operates computer software. A software development engineer will work in a team and specialize in a specific area of computer science,
- Computer architecture
- Software engineering
- Computer programming
- Artificial intelligence
They will be responsible for developing computer applications that the public uses. There are software development engineers in different industries, such as retail, government, and healthcare, which significantly impact how the industry functions.
Responsibilities Of An Amazon Software Engineer
A software development engineer at Amazon will be responsible for the company’s digital transformation and presence.
They will be responsible for successfully delivering and launching the company’s digital solutions, such as applications and websites. Amazon needs to work to keep its customers happy.
To accomplish this, Amazon hires software engineers to create better technological solutions for its customers.
An Amazon software engineer will work on different projects and teams for the company. Their day-to-day will involve assisting Amazon’s customers and improving their experience when using Amazon’s website.
For example, Amazon’s software development engineers will create user interfaces to make it easier for customers to order products and shop online. They also work to make it easier for customers to shop by building solutions for drivers.
Amazon Software Engineer Salary
Amazon is willing to pay top dollar for software development engineers. Typically, a software engineer at Amazon can earn approximately $153,164 per year. Amazon is based in Seattle, and as a result, the salary for those located in Seattle is higher than in other cities.
There is a shortage of software engineers in New York, and the salary for software engineers will be higher as a result. The annual salary could go as high as $180,000.
Amazon Software Salaries by Employee Experience
New software development engineers at Amazon can earn approximately 33% more than senior software development engineers who work at other tech companies. This is roughly 180% more than most entry-level roles. This is according to a PayScale report compiled from anonymously user-submitted data.
It should be taken into consideration that average salaries aren’t the best indicators of how much a new software engineer can earn when they start working at Amazon. Typically, software engineers will earn a higher salary when they have a higher rank and more responsibility.
In the table below, we’ve laid out how much a software development engineer can earn depending on how much experience they have.
Amazon Software Salaries by Skill Set
A prospective software development engineer at Amazon is one of the most popular jobs presently, especially a software developer who specializes in user interface/user experience.
To become a software engineer at Amazon, candidates will need a computer science degree and specialize in cloud computing, Big Data, Microsoft or PHP web development, Amazon Web Services, and business intelligence.
They will need to know how to code software that can handle large amounts of data in the system(s) environment (s), analytics, and information management platforms.
Amazon Software Salaries by Employee Level
As mentioned above, software engineers at Amazon have different salary levels ranging from L4 to L10. The average salary for a level ten can be as high as $941,000. There is also the benefit of sharing stock options would boost an engineer’s earning potential with Amazon.
Amazon Software Salaries by Location
More than 30% of Amazon’s employees work at its headquarters in Seattle. Amazon lists job openings on its website, but the company is always recruiting in Austin, New York, and San Francisco.
Now, if you’re wondering which city will give you the best salary as a software engineer at Amazon, you should consider the average pay rates. Washington State’s average state annual salary is $170K, according to PayScale.
Benefits of Working As a Software Development Engineer at Amazon
Amazon offers plenty of benefits to senior software development engineers.
These benefits are estimated to be worth $5400 and can be divided into three different categories that are the following:
Home and Financial Benefits
Amazon is unique in that it offers its employees a Mega Backdoor Roth IRA. Employees are also allowed to contribute 10% of their salary to the after-tax portion of their 401K plan. Amazon also contributes $500 to its employees’ savings accounts.
Amazon also offers its employees the following:
- $700 relocation bonus
- Pet assistance
- Fertility assistance
- Phone bill reimbursement
Health, Insurance, and Wellness Benefits
There are several insurance policies that Amazon provides its employees, including the following:
- Pet insurance
- Life insurance
- Health insurance
- Accidental death and dismemberment insurance
- Disability insurance
- Dental and vision insurance
Amazon also offers onsite wellness benefits that include the following:
- A pet-friendly workplace
- Gym reimbursement
- For selective employees, Amazon offers custom workstations
An Amazon software engineer can also enjoy a comprehensive leave policy that outlines the following:
- Maximum of ten weeks maternity leave
- Maximum of six weeks paternity leave
- Five days of paid sick leave
- Six days per year for personal leave
Amazon also provides various modes of transport to its employees, including shuttles and regional transits. If this isn’t enough, Amazon provides its employees with a transport allowance.
Amazon Software Development Engineer Levels
Every job at Amazon will have a different level that is determined by the following two parameters:
- Performance in the interview
- Years of experience
After assessing candidates with these parameters in mind, they will be assigned a level from L4 – L7. For a software engineer at Amazon, there is a compensation hierarchy. Below, we’ve listed the main job titles and their levels.
Associate Software Development Engineer 1 (SDE I, Level 4) – This candidate will be a new hire with approximately one to three years of experience. Many of the corporate positions will start at level four.
Software Development Engineer 2 (SDE II, Level 5) – This candidate will have three to ten years of experience and this will include experience with large codebases.
Software Development Engineer 3 (SDE III, Level 6) – A software engineer will have at least eight to ten years of experience working as a software development engineer. The candidate should have experience in leading at least one important project.
Principle Software Development Engineer (Principal SDE, Level 7) – It’s not often that a level four software development engineer at Amazon will reach this level because it is often reserved for software engineers that have 10 to 15 years of experience.
How to Pass the Amazon Software Development Engineer Job Assessment and Interview
When candidates are brought in for an interview at Amazon, they’ll go through a tough and thorough Amazon assessment process. They will need to demonstrate that they have the necessary knowledge and skills to work as a software engineer at Amazon.
So, applicants need to be prepared for this process. They will be expected to be ready to answer all the questions they’ll be asked during the interview.
Candidates should be able to talk about their educational background, previous work experience, and hobbies. They should also be prepared for an interview that could last for hours.
These long, rigorous interviews are intended to learn if an applicant has what it takes to be a software engineer at Amazon. So, applicants must show Amazon that they can handle the responsibilities that are part of working as a software engineer.
As with any job interview, it’s recommended that applicants arrive early so that they can get comfortable, and they should also bring a pen and pencil with them. Software engineers will need to be creative in their work, so applicants need to be prepared to think outside the box.
We’ve listed a few preparation tips below to help applicants prepare for their software engineer interview at Amazon.
These include the following:
- Thoroughly read through important coding questions and/or scenarios that are presented during the interview.
- Be prepared for surprises during the interview. Computer programming is considered an advanced field.
Be prepared for technical questions during the interview that will test your level of expertise. These questions will be based on the following areas for computer engineers:
- Design – Problem-solving and design (using new code that can be created at the drop of a hat)
- Programming – Algorithms, theory, and data structures (this is a particular favorite among entry-level engineers at Amazon.
- Testing and debugging – Fixing programming weaknesses (an essential skill for Amazon’s software engineers).
How to prepare? We highly recommend taking practice tests with real-life simulations of the types of questions on the test as well as doing interview preparation. Check out Job Test Prep’s SDE assessment practice materials for some of the best quality materials on the market.
Final Thoughts on the Amazon software Engineer Salary
There is a high demand for software engineers at Amazon, especially in New York and Seattle. This means that companies like Amazon are offering high salaries, but also there is also plenty of competition.
So, you can expect to receive a high salary from Amazon, but also expect a tough interview process.
But it will be worth it because of the high salary and the additional benefits that are part of working at Amazon. These benefits will include a range of health, transport, home, and financial benefits.
Anyone who wants to become a software engineer or software developer at Amazon can expect a high salary along with incredible benefits and a friendly work environment.