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Amazon BI Engineer Interview Questions

Anna W.

Anna W.

I love iced coffee, cute pictures of dogs, and SQL. Helping you ace your big tech interview @ bigtechinterviews.com

How do you prepare for your Business Intelligence Engineer (BIE) interview at Amazon/AWS?

It starts with getting a lay of the land and understanding Amazon/AWS and the types of BIE roles they’re actively hiring for. Amazon is the second largest employer in the United States with over 1.6M employees working in a wide range of verticals such as Prime Video, Alexa, amazon.com, and AWS. Its complex business model features dozens of smaller companies, departments, and teams with seemingly infinite amounts of data to extract, transform, load, and ultimately analyze.

And so, this is where the Amazon/AWS Business Intelligence Engineer comes into play to help support the data democratization and data engineering work (more on this later).

This article will cover the Amazon/AWS Business Intelligence Engineer interview with real Amazon Business Intelligence Engineer SQL interview questions and answers. There are no guarantees, of course, but if you read through this article and practice the SQL BIE interview questions, then you can feel confident in your upcoming interview and prepared to answer common business intelligence interview questions.

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The Business Intelligence Engineer Role at Amazon/AWS

The BIE role at Amazon operates in an extremely fast-paced environment and requires an individual who is can flourish in ambiguous situations, pay close attention to detail, be comfortable working with multiple teams and competing priorities while having the technical skills to move quickly and improve upon the status quo.

The Amazon/AWS BI Engineer job has a significant responsibility with both internal and external macro decisions and it’s imperative this individual can communicate feedback to leaders who’re able to squash negative experiences and drive improvements.

Amazon BI Engineer Responsibilities

  • Design automated BI solutions for recurrent reporting (daily/weekly/monthly).
  • Design data pipelines and automated processes which enable in-depth analysis.
  • Design automated data validation and testing processes.
  • Publish, analyze and improve dashboards, operational business metrics decks and key performance indicators.

Amazon BI Engineer Salary

  • Base: $113k
  • Stock grant: $22k
  • Bonus: $27k
  • Total compensation: $162k

Amazon BI Engineer Career Path

There’s no one size fits all for the BI engineer career path, you could be in the field of data science and find the BI engineer role more interesting, that said the usual typical roles that stream into the BI engineer role are the following,

  • Business analyst
  • BI analyst
  • Technical specialist
  • Data analyst

With that being said, it’s still very possible to receive an offer for a BI engineer role without having one of the above previous roles on your resume. If you believe you’ll struggle with your coding interview, we recommend practicing on our dynamic coding platform.

Some of the more common career paths after one becomes a BI engineer are the following,

  • Data scientist
  • Data analyst
  • Data engineer
  • Product manager
  • Software engineer

It really just depends on your exposure and what types of projects you work on. We’ve heard feedback from AWS BI engineers that at times it can be difficult to know what the right career path is since they’re working on such a wide variety of technical projects.

The Business Intelligence Engineer Interview Process at Amazon/AWS

The Amazon business intelligence role consists of one phone screen, one technical interview in SQL and potentially Python, and lastly an onsite interview consisting of 4-5 back-to-back interviews. It’s important to note the sixteen Amazon Leadership Principles are going to be the primary focus throughout the interview process.

You should expect each interview question to be themed around one particular leadership principle, we recommend writing out relevant examples in SMART format that best resonates with each leadership principle before your first interview.

Amazon/AWS BI Engineer Phone Screen

The initial phone screen is mostly to understand your background, role expectations, and culture fit. You should expect behavioral questions geared towards understanding your experience with certain languages, situations, and past projects.

Remember, to ask the interviewer about why they’re hiring for this particular role, his/her experience working at Amazon, and the interview process.

Common Amazon/AWS BI engineer phone screen questions:

  • Why Amazon?
  • Why this role at Amazon?
  • What’s your most proud achievement?
  • What’s the difference between transactional databased and OLAP?

Amazon BIE SQL Interview

The technical interview will either be in a living coding platform or in a notepad. Regardless, try and avoid these 3 most common SQL interview mistakes. They occur very frequently and can be avoided with the proper practice.

The interviewer will first test your SQL skills with 3-4 Amazon SQL interview questions and then will subsequently ask you 1-2 Python questions.

Common Amazon/AWS BI engineer technical interview questions:

  • Write a query to find the average salary by department. Round the result to 2 decimal places.
  • The HR team asks you to write a query to find all the employees who started before their manager. Please order by employee start_date in ASC order.
  • Your portfolio manager wants to know which startups need attention and asks you to write a query to show the startups in the US that have no sales yet.

Example of Amazon/AWS BI engineer interview question and solution: Bids by category results by DOW

Prompt: Write a query to find how many bids have been completed in each category for each day of the week. Please order the results by day of week in ASC order.

Example

Table: bids
+------+-----------+--------------------+-------+--------------+
|bid_id|customer_id| order_datetime     |item_id|order_quantity|
+------+-----------+--------------------+-------+--------------+
|A-001 |32483      |2021-12-15 09:15:22 |B000   |3             |
|A-002 |21456      |2022-01-10 09:28:35 |B001   |1             |
|A-003 |21456      |2022-01-09 09:28:35 |B005   |1             |
|A-004 |42491      |2022-01-16 02:52:07 |B008   |2             |
|A-005 |42491      |2022-01-18 02:52:07 |B008   |2             |
|A-006 |42491      |2022-01-18 02:52:07 |B008   |5             |
|A-007 |21456      |2022-01-17 09:28:35 |B000   |1             |
|A-008 |21456      |2022-01-17 10:28:35 |B008   |3             |
|A-009 |21456      |2022-01-19 10:28:35 |B000   |2             |
+------+-----------+--------------------+-------+--------------+
Table: items
+---------+---------------+
| item_id | item_category |
+---------+---------------+
|B000     |Outdoors       |
|B001     |Outdoors       |
|B002     |Outdoors       |
|B003     |Kitchen        |
|B004     |Kitchen        |
|B005     |Kitchen        |
|B006     |Bedroom        |
|B007     |Bedroom        |
|B008     |Bedroom        |
+---------+---------------+

Output

+-------------+-----------+-----+
|item_category|day_of_week|count|
+-------------+-----------+-----+
|Outdoors     |Wednesday  |2    |
|Bedroom      |Monday     |1    |
|Outdoors     |Monday     |2    |
|Bedroom      |Tuesday    |2    |
|Kitchen      |Sunday     |1    |
|Bedroom      |Sunday     |1    |
+-------------+-----------+-----+

Solution

select
i.item_category,
to_char(order_datetime::date, 'Day') as day_of_week,
count(b.bid_id)
from bids b
left join items i on b.item_id = i.item_id
group by i.item_category, to_char(order_datetime::date, 'Day')
order by 2 ASC;

Amazon/AWS BI Engineer Onsite (Final Loop)

The final round will consist of four-to-five interviews with an Amazon data scientist, Amazon BI engineer, BI analyst, hiring manager, and bar raiser. Each interview will be about 45-minutes and potentially have a break for lunch.

The bar raiser is an interviewer at Amazon/AWS whose role is to be an objective third party that is not directly associated with the team. Amazon believes by the best long-term strategy to raise the hiring bar and ensure the company maintains its 16 Amazon Leadership Principles is to bring in a bar raiser for everyone onsite interview.

Overall, the onsite will test not only your conceptual knowledge but your past experience and technical capabilities. You can expect statistics, SQL, Python, product sense, data modeling, ETL, and case-related questions during your onsite interview.

Common Amazon hiring manager interview questions:

  • When you commit to a deadline in Project and you cannot finish, how do you communicate to customers?
    • What was the reason that attributed to missing the deadline?
    • What is the solution or fix so that it won’t happen again?
  • Can you share an example of what you’ve done before your customers have asked for it?

Common Amazon data scientist interview questions:

  • Give me an example of a time when you worked on something that was NOT part of your regular job and you went beyond and had great success?
    • What exactly did you do?
    • How did that impact the customer?
    • How did you test and measure the impact?
  • You launch a new product in Chicago, how would you predict if it will grow or fail?
    • If your product is not growing, how will find what are the factors impacting it?
    • How will you compare it against similar products?

Common Amazon BI analyst interview questions:

  • How would you design a data model for Lyft App?
  • What would be the dimension and fact tables?
  • What would be the primary keys, attributes, and indexes created for these tables?

Common Amazon bar raiser interview questions:

  • Give me an example of a time when you committed to a deadline for a project and you couldn’t finish in time, how did you communicate this to the customer?
    • Why did this happen?
    • What was the risk?
    • What can you do to avoid this in the future?
  • Give me an example of a time when you were the outlier when the whole team had a different viewpoint?
  • Give me an example when you suggested a solution to a customer and had great success?
  • What is the proud moment of your career when you not only met the goal but exceeded it?

Common Amazon BI engineer interview questions:

  • Give me an example of when you took a decision without consulting your manager or Approval?
    • How did you justify not going through your manager or skip level for approval?
    • What is the risk involved and what could be the impact if you had to wait till Manager Approval?
    • Were customers happy with your decision?
  • Given the product sale information on Amazon’s shopping website, what would be your approach to deciding which product to price cut to improve sales?
    • How do you measure your success, like which product price cuts did better for the number of sales and profit?
    • How would you design your dashboards to show/measure your success?

Amazon BIE Interview Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the Amazon case study? Amazon case interviews consist of a 20-to-30-minute exercise in which you are placed in a hypothetical business situation and are asked to find a solution or make a recommendation.
  • How quickly will I hear from the recruiter after my Amazon interview? Most recruiters get back to their candidates within 7 business days.
  • Is it difficult to clear the Amazon interview? The Amazon interview ranks as a medium-difficulty interview based on technical and behavioral question difficulty.
  • How many steps are there in the Amazon interview process? There are only 3 interviews for the Amazon interview process.
  • How do I prepare for the Amazon interview? We recommend spending 60% of your time on behavioral-related preparation and the remaining 40% on technical questions using sites like bigtechinterviews.com

Want to practice more SQL interview questions like this with on-demand support and a dynamic SQL playground? Learn more here!

 

We’ve analyzed over 50,000 interviews from the latest data science, data analyst, data engineer, business analyst, and business intelligence engineer roles being filled by pre-IPO to Fortune 500 companies at Big Tech Interviews (BTI) to curate an exclusive list of the latest SQL interview questions and solutions so you can ace your next interview! 

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