Monday, September 26, 2022

Technical Program Manager Interview Questions Amazon

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The Role Of An Amazon Technical Program Manager

Interview: Amazon Sr. Technical Program Manager (From Geology Major to a Technical Program Manager)

A Technical Program Manager plays a critical role in helping drive company strategy, aligning teams, collaborating with cross-functional stakeholders, and delivering on multiple complex projects for the company. Given the rapid expansion of companies in the digital space, it has become imperative for companies, especially ones with a large digital footprint, to hire TPMs.

Amazon is the world’s largest e-commerce company and also a tech major. With a variety of products and services such as Alexa, AWS, E-commerce, logistics, Amazon needs TPMs who can lead and manage technical projects in these areas, and thus drive its growth.

Role

Amazon TPMs don different hats depending upon the teams/programs they are assigned to. Some of the different teams at Amazon where TPMs have to lend their services are:

  • Amazon Devices Team
  • Automation, Tooling and Insights team
  • Transportation Financial Systems Team

Here’s a more generic description of the role of a TPM at Amazon:

  • Working with product management to define business strategy, requirements and timelines.
  • Leading multiple cross-functional development teams through design, delivery, and management and support.
  • Regularly communicating with senior management on progress, risks and change control.

Skills/Qualifications required

Amazon Technical Program Manager salary

General Tips & Tools For Tpms When You Look For Opportunities

Network & Referrals: Its a good to start networking go to meetups, talk to people about the tools, process and the technology they use. Having a referral most definitely helps you stand out from the crowd. A great way to get a referral is to reach out to hiring Mangers directly. , join the group and start reaching out to hiring managers. Another way is to reach out to your family and friends and ask them if they know people who can refer you, it never hurts to ask.

LinkedIn Premium: Gives you some insight to the people applying to the opportunity. It also gives you the breakdown on the number of people and their background. It may be pricy but its worth a shot to get an edge over your competition.

Another interesting this is that with LinkedIn Premium you get access to that is a decent resource. Having a good LinkedIn profile also helps. Dont take this lightly.

Indeed.com

Indeed.com is a great place to look for jobs as well.

Resume

You need to have kick-ass Resume! I have a whole post on how TPMs should structure their resumes here. Remember a resume is what gets you through the door and it is what represents you. Put in the effort to make it standout.

Certifications: You can read how I feel about certifications in general here. I believe having the PMP and Scrum certification is good and almost necessary if you are starting out, if you have been around for a while it might not help a lot.

Salary Asks & Negotiation For A Technical Program Manager

If A Team Member Wasnt Pulling Their Weight What Would You Do

Amazon is a team-oriented environment where everyone is expected to do their fair share. However, that doesnt mean all employees perform at the same level.

With this question, the hiring manager wants to know the steps youd take to remedy the issue. You can discuss an example from your previous experience or treat it as a hypothetical if the situation hasnt arisen for you before.

EXAMPLE ANSWER:

While I havent experienced this personally, I do have a strategy for addressing a colleague that wasnt handling their responsibilities fully. First, I would speak with my coworker privately about the work, primarily to see if there was an obstacle causing a problem and if I could offer any assistance. If so, Id do what I could to help.

Second, if speaking with my colleague didnt resolve the issue, I would arrange to speak privately with our manager. Id use a fact-based approach to describe the problem, as well as steps I took to try and resolve it. At that point, I would follow my managers lead regarding what came next, offering support if I was able.

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Tell Me About A Time When You Made A Poor Customer Service Decision What Steps Did You Take To Remedy The Situation

Many Amazon jobs are customer-facing and may require employees to make various decisions about how to handle a customers situation. While talking about a mistake isnt easy, following up with how you used the experience to grow and develop can showcase you as a strong candidate.

EXAMPLE ANSWER:

In my last position, I was speaking with a customer about an order that was unexpectedly delayed. Along the way, I mistakenly said that the new delivery date was essentially guaranteed, as it seemed certain based on the available data. However, it was ultimately delayed again, which upset the customer based on what I told them previously. Fortunately, I was able to find a resolution by offering an immediate store credit refund for the original order and helping them explore our inventory to find a replacement that would arrive by the desired date. Additionally, after discussing the issue with my manager and accepting full responsibility, I was able to offer a small discount on the other item for the inconvenience, which ultimately left the customer satisfied.

How To Answer Behavioral Questions Using The Star Framework

Practice Tests on AWS Certifications Exam

These types of questions are answered using the STAR framework:

Framework
What happened in the ende.g. you got an award/promotion, the project launched on time and the company earned $XXX In the end, the project launched according to my plan. I got lots of visibility within the VP team and a promotion. Based on conservative estimations by the revenues team, the company saved at least $10M by launching before our competitors.

Please note the following:

  • Prepare 3-5 answers using the STAR framework before the interview and write them down
  • Your answers should not be longer than 2 minutes
  • Remember to use I instead of we in your answer, because the interviewer is interested on the actions that you took and not on what the team did

You can find lots of resources about these questions on the internet , so I wont go deeper into these questions. Here are some good links to start with:

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Key Tips To Crack Your Amazon Tpm Interview

Of course, Amazon TPM interview questions are considerably difficult. However, some measures can help you ace these questions. Have a look.

  • Learn about Amazon. Before you start preparing how to answer Amazon TPM interview questions, you need to be sure that Amazon is the right place for you. To get an idea of how a typical day of an Amazon TPM goes, you can talk to someone who is an ex- or present Amazon TPM. Moreover, Amazon Strategy Teardown, Amazon Vision and Mission Analysis, etc., are also reliable sources of information.
  • Read the 16 Leadership Principles thoroughly. Go through examples to understand their interpretations. It is even better if you can recite the principles. Multiple resources talk about recruiters asking questions regarding these different principles.For each principle, prepare an example from your work experience. Back it up with details and numbers. Amazon recruiters can drill the details. So, be prepared.
  • Prepare for architectural design questions. Do not only focus on design and performance. Recruiters also look for your understanding of APIs and their implementation.
  • Prepare and practice extensively before going for the interview. Prepare different examples for the questions, especially for behavioral questions. Ensure there are no repetitions.
  • Practice with ex-interviewers. It is immensely helpful if you can get professional feedback on your interview performance. This can help you identify specific areas where you need to improve.
  • Wrapping Up And Next Steps

    Many people want to break into technical program management. The role of a TPM is one that will continue to grow in demand as the need for cross-team and cross-functional collaboration increases. Landing a TPM role will require experience and preparation, but were here to help! If you want to get started preparing for your TPM interview, I highly recommend checking out Hacking the TPM Interview.

    This course was written by an experienced TPM who has worked with multiple FAANG companies. Youll learn about what it takes to pass the difficult TPM interview, as well as get some practical advice on how to thrive in the role.

    Happy learning!

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    How To Pass An Amazon Manager Interview 4 Top Tips By Richard Mcmunn

    The following tips are all suitable for managerial positions within Amazon, including Operations Manager, Account Manager, Team Leader, Business Development Manager, Logistics Manager, Area Manager, Contracts Manager and Senior Operations Manager.

    TIP #1 Amazon is undoubtedly one of the greatest companies to work for. However, if you want to become a manager for the worlds leading online retailer, you will need to demonstrate you have the ability to drive your team towards achieving Amazons business objectives. There is no room for people who are not committed to Amazons core values within the business, and as a manager you will need to learn and understand the leadership principles. On that basis, before you attend the Amazon Manager interview, we strongly recommend you read these important principles to make sure you are fully prepared and focused.

    TIP #2 Sticking with the Amazon leadership principles, prior to attending your interview, think of a time when you have demonstrated each of the 14 principles in a prior work-related situation. To help you prepare for your Amazon Manager interview, we have provided you with sample interview questions and answers on this page that are designed to put you ahead of the competition.

    Get ready for your Amazon Manager interview by downloading our 26 AMAZON MANAGER INTERVIEW QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS guide!

    Salary Negotiations After A Job Offer

    SDM/TPM Interview â Systems Design

    Did you get a job offer and you want to maximize the compensation that you are being offered? If so, then you have 2 main ways:

  • Ask the help of a professional
  • Levels.fyi negotiation services: Chat with former tech recruiters whoâll guide you on exactly what to say to get you a higher offer
  • Levels.fyi: Find the salary band for your level in any tech company
  • 71 Brilliant Salary Negotiation Email Samples by Lewis Lin : Learn how to negotiate your salary with easy-to-use emal samples and phone scripts
  • Also Check: How To Do Better In Interviews

    How To Answer Cross

    Difficult Technical and People Challenges

    So, you want to ace your technical program management interview. Youre in the right place! Introducing the Exponent TPM Course – your best ticket to a successful TPM interview.

    While TPMs must manage technical programs, this also means the management of the cross-functional relationships that come with it. Technical programs involve many different teams and departments. It is part of a technical program manager’s responsibility to navigate these cross-functional partnerships and keep everyone on track and on the same page.

    Generally speaking, these interview questions are focused on:

    • Your previous experience working alongside various stakeholders,
    • How you collaborate with others,
    • How you manage conflicts between different teams,

    To give you a better idea about what cross-functional partnerships are all about, here are some of the teams you’ll likely work with:

    Engineering

    Naturally, TPMs will work most closely with the engineering teams. Of which, you’ll likely partner with many engineering managers and tech leads.

    It’s recommended that you maintain good relationships with these stakeholders, considering you’ll work with them on essential timelines, processes, and milestones.

    Product Management

    Another essential partnership for TPMs is with the product management teams. This relationship is defined by a collaborative effort to execute product vision and development goals.

    Data

    Design

    Amazon Tpm Interview Process

    See this video by Deepti Rompally, a TPM turned SDM from Amazon.

    How To Get A Call From Amazon

    To begin with, you will need to get a Hiring Manager or Recruiter to reach out to you. Here are the various ways you can get a call from Amazon:

  • Referral: One of the best ways to get a call is to have someone internally refer you.
  • Apply Online: Apply for a few opportunities at . Generally, if you apply for 3-4 opportunities, there is a high likelihood you will get a call back in 2-3 weeks, if you have the right sort of experience and a decent resume.
  • Linkedin : Join the , where you can see TPM opportunities posted by Amazon HMs. This will give you a chance to reach out to these HMs directly.
  • Linkedin : Reach out to Amazon Recruiters on LinkedIn and politely introduce yourself. Ask them if there are any teams that could use a TPM like yourself.
  • Blind:Blind has always been an excellent place to find referrals on offer.
  • Resume: All the above methods are moot if you do not have a good resume. There is an entire section on the Ace The TPM Interview program which features topics like structuring your resume, the keywords you should and should not use, and examples of the best TPM resumes. Be sure to check it out.
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    Preparing For Amazon Behavioral Questions

    Now, its important to understand that talking about your skills is only one part of the equation. You also need to be ready for Amazon behavioral interview questions.

    Amazon adores behavioral interview questions. Usually, its because of the belief that past behavior indicates future success. Plus, it gives them clues about a candidates personality and behavioral traits, as well as how well a person aligns with the companys core leadership principles .

    Some of these can be a little tricky, but when handled properly, behavioral interview questions are also chances to shine. Begin by embracing the STAR Method. With that, you can take a boring response and carefully polish it into a captivating answer. Couple that with the Tailoring Method, and you have an approach that focuses on personalization, customizing your responses to the role and company.

    In fact we we wanted to let you know that we created an amazing free cheat sheet that will give you word-for-word answers for some of the toughest interview questions you are going to face in your upcoming interview. After all, hiring managers will often ask you more generalized interview questions!

    Amazon Tpm Interview Questions

    Technical Program Management Interview

    Amazon TPM interview questions broadly cover three categories â behavioral, technical, and program management. Some common questions are:

    Behavioral Questions for Amazon TPM Interview:

  • Tell me about a time you did something that was not a part of your job description or your responsibility.
  • How would you make Amazon.com better?
  • Give me one instance when you took an important decision without approval from your reporting manager.
  • Describe a time you made a mistake.
  • Talk about a time you received negative feedback. How did you handle it?
  • Sample questionsVideo lecturesIdeal solutions

    Technical Questions for Amazon TPM Interview:

  • What is the difference between a router and a switch?
  • How do you run programs from end to end?
  • How do passwords pass securely from server to client?
  • Build a program that can revert a string.
  • Write a program that will help identify all equal elements between two arrays.
  • Design an anti-virus scanner.
  • Talk about the computational complexity of hash tables.
  • Design a database for a URL implementation.
  • Using OOD, describe a deck of cards.
  • How does Amazon.com work?
  • Program Management Questions for Amazon TPM Interview:

  • Do you use any metrics to review success? What are those?
  • What is the most innovative idea you have ever come up with?
  • How do you think your responsibilities differ from those of a project manager?
  • Walk us through your approach to create a strategy and roadmap for your programs.
  • How do you approach change management?
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    Amazon Senior Tpm Interview Questions

    While answering senior TPM interview questions, you need to keep in mind the 14 Leadership Principles to align your answer with company objectives.

    Some common questions asked are:

    Behavioral Questions for Amazon Senior TPM Interview:

  • Talk about your most complex project.
  • Tell us about a situation where you had to deal with competing priorities.
  • Describe a time when you had a conflict with your manager or team member.
  • Technical Questions for Amazon Senior TPM Interview:

  • Make a technical design of an automated parking solution.
  • What are load balancer and API gateway?
  • Design an automation system that can download messages from a repository in the cloud and put them in the right buckets after assessing them.
  • Build a service that can handle hundreds of transactions that will be executed at specific times of a day.
  • Project Management Questions for Amazon Senior TPM Interview:

  • What tools and technology do you think are essential to be successful in your role?
  • Tell me about a time you disagreed with another team. What was the outcome?
  • Walk us through a time when you chose a short-term gain over a long-term gain. What was your thought process?
  • Check out for more.

    What Interviews To Expect

    What’s the Amazon Technical Program Manager interview process and timeline? It takes takes four to eight weeks and follows the steps below. Note that the process at AWS follows similar steps.

  • Resume, cover letter, and referrals
  • Recruiter phone screen: one interview
  • TPM phone screens: one to two interviews
  • Writing exercise
  • TPM onsite: four to six interviews
  • Let’s look at each of these steps in more detail below:

    1.1.1 Recruiter phone screen

    In most cases, you’ll start your interview process with Amazon by talking to a Recruiter on the phone. They are looking to confirm that you’ve got a chance of getting the job at all, so be prepared to explain your background and why youre a good fit at Amazon.

    You should expect typical behavioral and resume questions like, “Tell me about yourself”, “”, or “Tell me about your current day to day as a Technical Program Manager.” When answering even the most common interview questions, be sure to express your understanding of .

    1.1.2 TPM phone screen

    If you’ve passed the HR screen, you’ll be invited to one or two TPM phone screens. This step is called a “phone screen”, but it sometimes takes place over video chat using Amazon Chime which is the company’s video conferencing product.

    Each interview will last 45 to 60 minutes. You’ll speak to a TPM peer or a potential manager and they’ll ask you a mix of system design and behavioral questions.

    1.1.3 Amazon writing exercise

    1.1.3 Onsite interviews

    Question types

    Bar raiser

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