Amazon Case Study Interview: Everything You Need to Know (2023)

If you’re interviewing for a business role at Amazon, there is a good chance that you’ll receive at least one case study interview, also known as an Amazon case interview. Amazon roles that include case study interviews as part of the interview process include:

  • Business Analyst
  • Business Development
  • Corporate Strategy
  • Product Manager
  • Product Marketing
  • Marketing

To land an Amazon job offer, you’ll need to crush every single one of your case interviews. While Amazon case study interviews may seem ambiguous and challenging, know that they can be mastered with proper preparation.

If you are preparing for an upcoming Amazon case interview, we have you covered. In this comprehensive Amazon case interview guide, we’ll cover:

  • What is an Amazon case study interview
  • Why Amazon uses case study interviews
  • The 6 steps to ace any Amazon case interview
  • Amazon case interview tips
  • Resources to prepare for your Amazon case interview

What is an Amazon Case Study Interview?

Amazon case study interviews, also known as Amazon case interviews, are 20- to 30-minute exercises in which you are placed in a hypothetical business situation and are asked to find a solution or make a recommendation.

First, you’ll create a framework that shows the approach you would take to solve the case. Then, you’ll collaborate with the interviewer, answering a mix of quantitative and qualitative questions that will give you the information and data needed to develop an answer. Finally, you’ll deliver your recommendation at the end of the case.

Case interviews have traditionally been used by consulting firms to assess a candidate’s potential to become a successful consultant. However, now a days, many companies with ex-consultants use case studies to assess a candidate’s capabilities. Since Amazon has so many former consultants in its business roles, you’ll likely encounter at least one case study interview.

The business problems that you’ll be given in an Amazon case study interview will likely be real challenges that Amazon faces today:

(Video) Case Interview 101 - Watch This Before Anything Else!

  • How can Amazon improve customer retention for their Amazon Prime subscription service?
  • How can Amazon improve its digital streaming service?
  • How can Amazon increase ad revenues from merchant sellers?
  • How should Amazon deal with fake products among its product listings?
  • How can Amazon Web Services outcompete Microsoft Azure?

Depending on what team at Amazon you are interviewing for, you may be given a business problem that is relevant to that specific team.

Although there is a wide range of business problems you could possibly be given in your Amazon case interview, the fundamental case interview strategies to solve each problem is the same. If you learn the right strategies and get enough practice, you’ll be able to solve any Amazon case study interview.

Why does Amazon Use Case Study Interviews?

Amazon uses case study interviews because your performance in a case study interview is a measure of how well you would do on the job. Amazon case interviews assess a variety of different capabilities and qualities needed to successfully complete job duties and responsibilities.

  • Logical, structured thinking: Can you structure complex problems in a clear, simple way?
  • Analytical problem solving: Can you read, interpret, and analyze data well?
  • Business acumen: Do you have sound business judgment and intuition?
  • Communication skills: Can you communicate clearly, concisely, and articulately?
  • Personality and cultural fit: Are you coachable and easy to work with?

Since all of these qualities can be assessed in just a 20- to 30-minute case, Amazon case study interviews are an effective way to assess a candidate’s capabilities.

In order to do well on the personality and cultural fit portion, you should familiarize yourself with Amazon’s Leadership Principles before your interview. At a high level, these principles include:

  • Customer obsession: Leaders start with the customer and work backwards
  • Ownership: Leaders are owners and act on behalf of the entire company
  • Invent and simplify: Leaders expect and require innovation and invention from their teams and always find ways to simplify
  • Learn and be curious: Leaders are never done learning and always seek to improve themselves
  • Insist on the highest standards: Leaders have relentlessly high standards
  • Think big: Leaders create and communicate a bold direction that inspires results
  • Frugality: Accomplish more with less
  • Earn trust: Leaders listen attentively, speak candidly, and treat others respectfully
  • Dive deep: Leaders operate at all levels and stay connected to the details
  • Deliver results: Leaders focus on key inputs for their business and deliver them with the right quality and in a timely fashion

The 6 Steps to Solve Any Amazon Case Interview

In general, there are six steps to solve any Amazon case study interview.

1. Understand the case

Your Amazon case interview will begin with the interviewer giving you the case background information. While the interviewer is speaking, make sure that you are taking meticulous notes on the most important pieces of information. Focus on understanding the context of the situation and the objective of the case.

Don’t be afraid to ask clarifying questions if you do not understand something. You may want to summarize the case background information back to the interviewer to confirm your understanding of the case.

The most important part of this step is to verify the objective of the case. Not answering the right business question is the quickest way to fail a case interview.

(Video) Amazon Case Study | Jeff Bezos | Total Assignment Help [In-depth study]

2. Structure the problem

The next step is to develop a framework to help you solve the case.A framework is a tool that helps you structure and break down complex problems into smaller, more manageable components. Another way to think about frameworks is brainstorming different ideas and organizing them into different categories.

Before you start developing your framework, it is completely acceptable to ask the interviewer for a few minutes so that you can collect your thoughts and think about the problem.

Once you have identified the major issues or areas that you need to explore, walk the interviewer through your framework. They may ask a few questions or provide some feedback.

3. Kick off the case

Once you have finished presenting your framework, you’ll start diving into different areas of your framework to begin solving the case. How this process will start depends on whether the case interview is candidate-led or interviewer-led.

If the case interview is a candidate-led case, you’ll be expected to propose what area of your framework to start investigating. So, propose an area and provide a reason for why you want to start with that area. There is generally no right or wrong area of your framework to pick first.

If the case interview is interviewer-led, the interviewer will tell you what area of the framework to start in or directly give you a question to answer.

4. Solve quantitative problems

Amazon case study interviews may have some quantitative aspect to them. For example, you may be asked to calculate a certain profitability or financial metric. You could also be asked to estimate the size of a particular market or to estimate a particular figure.

The key to solving quantitative problems is to lay out a structure or approach upfront with the interviewer before doing any math calculations. If you lay out and present your structure to solve the quantitative problem and the interviewer approves of it, the rest of the problem is just simple execution of math.

5. Answer qualitative questions

Amazon case study interviews may also have qualitative aspects to them. You may be asked to brainstorm a list of potential ideas. You could also be asked to provide your opinion on a business issue or situation.

(Video) Top 3 Amazon Interview Tips (Ex-Amazon Recruiting Leader + Certified Amazon Trainer)

The key to answering qualitative questions is to structure your answer. When brainstorming a list of ideas, develop a structure to help you neatly categorize all of your ideas. When giving your opinion on a business issue or situation, provide a summary of your stance or position and then enumerate the reasons that support it.

6. Deliver a recommendation

In the last step of the Amazon case interview,you’ll present your recommendation and provide the major reasons that support it. You do not need to recap everything that you have done in the case, so focus on only summarizing the facts that are most important.

It is also good practice to include potential next steps that you would take if you had more time or data. These can be areas of your framework that you did not have time to explore or lingering questions that you do not have great answers for.

Amazon Case Interview Tips

Below are eight of our best tips to help you perform your best during your Amazon case study interview.

1. Familiarize yourself with Amazon’s business model

If you don’t understand Amazon’s business model, it will be challenging for you to do well in their case interviews. If you are interviewing for the Amazon Web Services team, you should know how Amazon makes money as a cloud service provider. If you are interviewing for the Amazon Prime team, you should be familiar with how their subscription service works.

2. Read recent news articles on Amazon

A lot of the times, the cases you’ll see in an Amazon case study interview are real business issues that the company faces. Reading up on the latest Amazon news will give you a sense of what Amazon’s biggest challenges are and what major business decisions they face today. There is a good chance that your case study interview will be similar to something that you have read in the news.

3. Verify the objective of the case

Answering the wrong business problem will waste a lot of time during your Amazon case study interview. Therefore, the most critical step of the case interview is to verify the objective of the case with the interviewer. Make sure that you understand what the primary business issue is and what overall question you are expected to answer at the end of the case.

4. Ask clarifying questions

Do not be afraid to ask questions. You will not be penalized for asking questions that are important and relevant to the case.

(Video) Amazon Interview Preparation In 10 Steps

Great questions to ask include asking for the definition of an unfamiliar term, asking questions that clarify the objective of the case, and asking questions to strengthen your understanding of the business situation.

5. Do not use memorized frameworks

Interviewers can tell when you are using memorized frameworks from popular case interview prep books. Amazon values creativity and intellect. Therefore, make every effort to create a custom, tailored framework for each case that you get.

Read our comprehensive case interview framework guide to learn how to create outstanding frameworks.

6. Always connect your answers to the case objective

Throughout the case, make sure you are connecting each of your answers back to the overall business problem or question. What implications does your answer have on the overall business problem?

Many candidates make the mistake of answering case questions correctly, but they don’t take the initiative to tie their answer back to the case objective.

7. Communicate clearly and concisely

In an Amazon case study interview, it can be tempting to answer the interviewer’s question and then continue talking about related topics or ideas. However, you have a limited amount of time to solve an Amazon case, so it is best to keep your answers concise and to the point.

Answer the interviewer’s question, summarize how it impacts the case objective, and then move onto the next important issue or question.

8. Be enthusiastic

Amazon wants to hire candidates that love their job and will work hard. Displaying enthusiasm shows that you are passionate about working at Amazon. Having a high level of enthusiasm and energy also makes the interview more enjoyable for the interviewer. They will be more likely to have a positive impression of you.

Resources to Prepare for Your Amazon Case Interview

If you’re looking for the best way to learn and practice case study interviews to land a job at Amazon, give our one week case interview course a try. The material in the course has helped 6,000+ students land offers at top-tier consulting firms such as McKinsey, BCG, and Bain, so it’ll be more than enough for your Amazon case study interview.

(Video) The Complete Guide to Case Interviews for 2021 (Full Webinar)

Try the course for free today.

If you are considering alternative resources to use, below are the two books we recommend. They are available in digital or paperback format on Amazon.

  • Hacking the Case Interview: Learn exactly what to do and what to say in every step of the case interview. This is the perfect book for beginners that are looking to learn the basics of case interviews quickly.
  • The Ultimate Case Interview Workbook: Hone your case interview skills through 65+ problems tailored towards each type of question asked in case interviews and 15 full-length cases based on real McKinsey, BCG, and Bain interviews. This book is great for intermediates.

FAQs

How do you pass a case study interview? ›

Case interview tips
  1. Understand the issue; ask clarifying questions as needed.
  2. Identify the underlying assumptions.
  3. Summarize specific issues and findings.
  4. State your recommendations.
  5. Outline next steps and expected results/impacts.

How do you answer a case study interview question? ›

There are the four basic steps to answer case interview questions:
  1. Step 1: Clarify any unclear points in the question.
  2. Step 2: Announce approach and ask for time.
  3. Step 3: Draw issue trees to solve the given problem.
  4. Step 4: Pitch your answer and end with a takeaway conclusion.

Why are Amazon interviews so tough? ›

Another reason why it's difficult to land an offer with Amazon is that its behavioral interview is quite challenging. Engineers applying to positions across the board go through a mandatory behavioral interview where they're assessed on a bunch of behavioral aspects.

How many stories should I prepare for Amazon interview? ›

You need to have enough stories to answer the questions but you also need to be able to remember your stories. Around 15 is the average number of stories my clients have. This will get you started with your prep, but you need to do more than this to really be ready for your interview.

Are Case Study interviews hard? ›

Case interviews are among the hardest job interviews for business candidates. Passing rate is only 10% to 20%, with each candidate facing 4-6 case interviews for one consulting recruitment process.

How do you solve a case study easily? ›

Preparing the Case
  1. Read and Examine the Case Thoroughly. Take notes, highlight relevant facts, underline key problems.
  2. Focus Your Analysis. Identify two to five key problems. ...
  3. Uncover Possible Solutions/Changes Needed. Review course readings, discussions, outside research, your experience.
  4. Select the Best Solution.

How long does it take to prepare for a case study interview? ›

It typically takes candidates 60 to 80 hours to prepare for case interviews, which is about 6 to 8 weeks of preparation. However, many candidates find themselves in situations where they only have one month, one week, or even one day to prepare.

What are 10 most common interview questions and answers? ›

10 most common interview questions and answers
  • Tell me about yourself.
  • What attracted you to our company?
  • Tell me about your strengths.
  • What are your weaknesses?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years?
  • Tell me about a time where you encountered a business challenge?

Is Amazon hard to get hired? ›

No, it is not hard to get a job at Amazon.

Depending on the position, getting a job at Amazon is relatively easy due to the thousands of job openings at any given time. This is especially the case if you are applying for a position working at the fulfillment center or a delivery position.

What percentage of Amazon applicants get an interview? ›

Popularly known as “the Loop”, Amazon's on-site interview process consists of a series of interview rounds that test your core technical skills. Since only 3% of candidates get through these rounds, doing thorough on-site interview preparation is necessary.

Which interview is harder Facebook or Amazon? ›

According to Glassdoor.com, Amazon is one of the hardest places to interview. The reason for the rigorous interview process dates back to the beginnings of this company, when its CEO, Bezos, first started developing Amazon. So, Amazon's interview process is harder than Facebook's.

Is it OK to repeat examples in Amazon interview? ›

Aim to only repeat an example, when you are answering a behavioural question, about a different Amazon Leadership Principle. And when you do, make sure you reshape the narrative so that only the fundamental “Situation” is the same.

How long should I study for Amazon interview? ›

While five to 10 hours is the recommended time for interview preparation, each person is unique, and you may need less or more time to prepare successfully. Consider what you already know about the company and the surrounding aspects to determine how much time you need to spend researching.

Is cracking Amazon interview easy? ›

Amazon interviews can be grueling. But preparing for the types of interview questions asked at an Amazon tech interview can make your interview a lot easier. Questions on Amazon's 16 leadership principles, behavioral skills, coding, and system design are asked. You'll also face some job- and company-specific questions.

Can you fail a case interview? ›

Sometimes, you may get all of the answers right in a case interview but still be rejected. One reason why this may happen is that you're “too slow” in solving the case. Being “too slow” does not mean you need to talk faster.

What is the greatest weakness of a case study? ›

Limitations of Case Studies

Lacking scientific rigour and providing little basis for generalization of results to the wider population. Researchers' own subjective feeling may influence the case study (researcher bias). Difficult to replicate. Time-consuming and expensive.

What is the biggest disadvantage of a case study? ›

An important disadvantage is that case study research is susceptible to bias when the researcher's personal opinions and preferences interfere with the collection and analysis of data.

What are the 4 most important parts of case study? ›

4 Parts of an Effective Case Study
  • Ditch the norm. You've seen that tired, old case study template a million times: ...
  • Show the cost of inertia. A more useful approach is to spell out how much not solving their problem could eventually cost. ...
  • Prove your value. ...
  • Create a more effective format.
18 Mar 2016

What are 7 steps to solve case study? ›

7 Easy Steps to Make a Good Case Study
  • Don't have over expectations about your case studies. ...
  • Find something interesting to engage readers. ...
  • Make your case study for the target audience. ...
  • Follow the right structure in your document. ...
  • Use relevant data in your case study. ...
  • Draw your company or service as a helping hand.

How do you get high marks in a case study? ›

Steps to a top-scoring impact case study
  1. COMMENT. ...
  2. Articulate how specific groups have benefited and provide evidence of significance and reach. ...
  3. Give no grounds for doubt that the research was at least of internationally significant quality (warranting two stars or higher)
12 Jul 2018

How do I start preparing for a case study? ›

  1. Find Cases That Are Suitable for Practicing Alone. ...
  2. Synthesize the Case Background Information. ...
  3. Ask Clarifying Questions. ...
  4. Structure a Framework and Present it Out Loud. ...
  5. Propose an Area to Start the Case. ...
  6. Answer Each Case Question Out Loud. ...
  7. Deliver a Recommendation Out Loud. ...
  8. Review Your Answers and Identify Improvement Areas.

How long does it take Amazon to get back to you after an interview 2022? ›

We strive to get back to you within two business days after your phone interview.

What questions are asked in a case study interview? ›

Case Study Interview Questions About the Customer's Business
  • Would you give me a quick overview of [company]? ...
  • Can you describe your role? ...
  • How do your role and team fit into the company and its goals? ...
  • How long has your company been in business? ...
  • How many employees do you have? ...
  • Is your company revenue available?
22 Aug 2022

What are the 8 hardest interview questions and answers? ›

The 10 hardest interview questions (and how to answer them)
  • Tell us about yourself. ...
  • What are your weaknesses? ...
  • Why do you want to change jobs? ...
  • Where do you see yourself in five years? ...
  • How Would Your Colleagues Describe You? ...
  • What did you like most/least about your last job? ...
  • Tell Me About a Mistake You've Made.
16 Jun 2021

What are the 5 unusual interview questions? ›

Examples of Weird Interview Questions
  • How many basketballs can fit on a bus?
  • What two things, aside from food and water, would you want on a deserted island?
  • How many pizzas are ordered every night in the United States?
  • What would you do if you won the lottery?
  • Blue or green?
29 May 2021

What are the 6 parts of case study in order? ›

6 parts of a case analysis
  • Preparation. Just like with any study, it's important to first prepare to conduct the case analysis. ...
  • Introduction. ...
  • Background information. ...
  • Proposed solutions. ...
  • Recommendations. ...
  • Review.

What is a good example of a case study? ›

Types of Case Studies

Researchers might study a group of people in a certain setting or look at an entire community. For example, psychologists might explore how access to resources in a community has affected the collective mental well-being of those living there.

Is Amazon stressful to work? ›

“While it has been an incredibly rewarding place to work, the pressure often feels relentless and at times, unnecessary.

What disqualifies you from being hired at Amazon? ›

This means the company considers the details of each applicant, including their criminal history, and other details, like work experience and references. Certain types of criminal convictions might make it difficult to get hired at Amazon — including sexual abuse, murder, theft, and drug charges.

What is the best job to have at Amazon? ›

Best Amazon Jobs
  • Learning Specialist I. Average Salary: $72K-$107K. ...
  • Technical Writer. Average Salary: $98K. ...
  • Software Engineer. Average Salary: $115K. ...
  • Senior Technical Recruiter. Average Salary: $116K. ...
  • Security Engineer. Average Salary: $120K. ...
  • Data Scientist. Average Salary: $120K. ...
  • Art Director. ...
  • Principal Product Manager.
15 Aug 2022

How many people make it to the final round of interviews? ›

How many candidates make it to the final interview? Only 3 candidates on average make it to the final interview. Competition for jobs is fierce, and 98% of candidates don't even make it to the interview process.

How long does it take Amazon to make an offer after interview? ›

Hiring Meeting

After your interviews, the people you met with will gather in one room to discuss whether or not you should be hired. Usually, you'll find out the outcome within a week of finishing the final interviews.

How many people usually make it to final interviews? ›

How Many Candidates Are in the Final Round of Interviews? Usually, 2-3 candidates are invited to the final round of interviews. However, there are exceptions. If an employer has multiple jobs available in the group, they may invite more candidates in the hope of hiring more people.

Who pays better Amazon or Facebook? ›

Taking into account any middle-level employee job, Facebook pays 1.8 times more than Amazon. This is a huge difference in the level of pays, where Facebook takes the win in this category. The average month-to-month compensation of a Facebook product manager is $338,000 a year and varies from $223,000 to $462,000.

Is it better to work at Apple or Amazon? ›

Apple scored higher in 9 areas: Overall Rating, Culture & Values, Diversity & Inclusion, Work-life balance, Senior Management, Compensation & Benefits, CEO Approval, Recommend to a friend and Positive Business Outlook. Amazon scored higher in 1 area: Career Opportunities.

Is Amazon richer than Google? ›

As of June 2022, Alphabet was the biggest internet company worldwide with a market cap of over 1.9 trillion U.S. dollars Second-ranked Amazon had a market capitalization of 1,691 billion U.S. dollars.

What is the star method in interviews? ›

The STAR method is a structured manner of responding to a behavioral-based interview question by discussing the specific situation, task, action, and result of the situation you are describing.

Is it normal to have 2 phone interviews for Amazon? ›

Amazon Phone Interview Rounds

The basic Amazon phone interview has 1-2 rounds in total. The phone screen interview at Amazon lasts about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Typically, the recruiter will assess your interest and fit for the role. They will also ask basic questions about your background and work experience.

Can I prepare for Amazon interview in 10 days? ›

Spend at least 7-8 weeks preparing for your interview, as the topics to cover are vast and, at times, complex. Solve at least 1-2 coding problems every day. Focus more on problems around trees and graphs.

How many stories are enough for Amazon interview? ›

You need to have enough stories to answer the questions but you also need to be able to remember your stories. Around 15 is the average number of stories my clients have. This will get you started with your prep, but you need to do more than this to really be ready for your interview.

Should you memorize interview answers? ›

Recurring practice: Moving forward, rehearse your answers once every two – three weeks as needed. At this point they should be fairly solidified in your head. When it comes to getting started, the best time is now. It takes time to prepare and memorize your answers and you never know when a job interview will pop up.

What is Amazon's acceptance rate? ›

Fewer than 2% of applicants get hired at Amazon.

If you're wondering how to get a job at Amazon, the key is preparation.

How many rounds are Amazon interviews? ›

There are four Amazon interview rounds. In this four-round Amazon interview process, each round lasts for 1 hour. Each round will begin with five minutes of introductions. You will have a 50 minutes interview.

Why should we hire you answer best? ›

Show that you have skills and experience to do the job and deliver great results. You never know what other candidates offer to the company. But you know you: emphasize your key skills, strengths, talents, work experience, and professional achievements that are fundamental to getting great things done on this position.

How do I prepare for a case study exam? ›

Preparing for case studies before the exam:
  1. Start by identifying the theories and concepts covered in your course. ...
  2. Practice reading case studies and identifying relevant information. ...
  3. Practice relating concepts and theories to real-world situations: ask lecturers and check textbooks for practice examples.
25 Oct 2022

What type of questions does a case study answer? ›

Research questions for a case study can be both quantitative and qualitative but frequently use terms similar to other qualitative research designs. For example, these kinds of questions focus on concepts such as explain, explore, describe, and under- stand.

How many interviews are enough for a case study? ›

In order to avoid the bias with a single interview, as a thumb rule minimum 3-5 interviews need to be conducted.

How long should case study answers be? ›

Most resources tell you that a case study should be 500-1500 words. We also encourage you to have a prominent snapshot section of 100 words or less. The results and benefits section should take the bulk of the word count. Don't use more words than you need.

What are the 5 essential elements of a great case study? ›

The Elements of a Great Case Study
  • (1) A time- and issue-bounded dilemma.
  • (2) Explanations of issues and concepts.
  • (3) A story, with vivid characters and moments.
  • (4) Data and other information.
  • (5) Scenarios that lead in different directions.
26 Feb 2019

What is a good introduction for a case study? ›

Introduction

Briefly outline the case to identify its significance. State the report's aim(s). Provide the organisation of the main ideas in the report. Briefly describe the key problem and its significance (You usually do not need to provide details of findings or recommendations.

What are the 7 steps to write a convincing case study? ›

7 Easy Steps to Make a Good Case Study
  1. Don't have over expectations about your case studies. ...
  2. Find something interesting to engage readers. ...
  3. Make your case study for the target audience. ...
  4. Follow the right structure in your document. ...
  5. Use relevant data in your case study. ...
  6. Draw your company or service as a helping hand.

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