At App Academy, our bootcamp graduates have one goal in mind: land the job of their dreams (or, at least the perfect one to springboard your career).
For many, that dream job is at one of the world’s biggest tech companies like Amazon, Facebook, Netflix, Tesla, or Google. Not only will our bootcamp curricula teach you the skills needed to get a job at one of the FAANG companies or other major tech organizations, our career coaches will help you polish your resume and portfolio to get there.
Matthew Martinez is one alumni who found a career he loves starting with a bootcamp education at App Academy. From there, he went on to contract at Facebook for two years before landing a role at Amazon. Here’s how he got a job at Amazon and what helped him in the process.
Q: What’s your title at Amazon and what do you do there?
I am a Software Development Engineer on the Carbon Net Zero team, which is part of the Global Sustainability Organization. In my current role, I build tools to measure and reduce the carbon footprint of the third largest company on Earth, along with an engineering department of around 25 others, our science partners, product team, and more.
Q: How did you land your initial contract with Facebook and make the pivot over to Amazon?
My job search after App Academy was grueling. I applied to over 400 listings and only progressed to two onsite interviews. In my first conversation with the K2 recruiter, he told me verbatim that I didn’t sound like I had the experience to pass an interview. When we spoke a week later I argued with him for 10 minutes and he said, “this is great. I’ll put you in next week”. I showed up to an hour-long Algorithm session at Facebook and passed.
Q: What was the application & interview process like at Amazon and/or Facebook?
My second job search was much more straightforward. I made a list of the 30 highest-paying/well-known tech companies I could think of and applied to them. I also applied to about 5 start-ups. I ended up with 15 call-backs, 5 on-sites, and one offer for Amazon. Most of the on-sites were the same pattern: phone screen, tech screen, then a full day of 4 or 5 interviews.
Q: What do you think set you apart from other Amazon and/or Facebook applicants?
I think the thing that sets me apart is the same thing that sets most bootcamp grads apart: Our determination and resolve to change our lives. I have learned not to stop until I get what I want and that I can always go learn the things I don’t know, whatever it might take.
Q: How did App Academy prepare you for applying to Amazon and Facebook?
It taught me how to interview, how to solve algorithms, and it gave me a shiny thing to put on my first resume.
Q: What were you doing prior to App Academy and what prompted you to make the switch to software engineering?
I spent a year as a public elementary school teacher, which was by far the most difficult thing I have ever done, even compared to App Academy, my first job search, and being a software engineer. After that, I spent a year as a leasing agent at a hi-rise deciding how to bring stability back into my life. We were directly across the street from Twitter and Uber and I noticed that our tenants were making 100K – 200K more than I was. The rest was history.
Q: What advice do you have for budding tech professionals or anyone wanting to apply to Amazon and/or Facebook?
Work hard and study your algorithms. Teach yourself how to learn new things quickly. It is increasingly difficult to become a FTE at FB once you are a contractor due to changes in labor laws so I do not recommend trying that only as a way in the door. For Amazon, I also recommend building some stories based around how you fulfill their leadership principles.
You can find Matthew on twitter at https://twitter.com/Matthew_Musings
Amazon is currently hiring folks in all positions!