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Offered a Job with Amazon - Unsure what to do

  • 19-11-2022 7:13pm
    Registered Users Posts: 3,884 ✭✭✭Tzardine

    So I have just been offered quite a senior management role with Amazon Web Services. (Never been through a recruitment process like it - 8 x 1 hour interviews)

    They did not actually offer me the job I applied for, but offered me an incredible opportunity in Germany - heading up a function.

    My predicament is that at the moment I am a public service manager at Assistant Principal level. This is most likely the ceiling for me in the Public Service. The Amazon offer is over twice my current salary, and includes a very large sign on bonus, relocation bonus and a lot of shares.

    I am nervous about leaving the recession proof job for life, and going to a the tech sector with all the layoffs currently. Just me and my wife for relocation, no kids. Amazon will also bin you pretty quick if they dont like the cut of your jib. The offer they have made is very unexpected though, and would change my life if it worked out.

    What would you do in the circumstances? They want me to be in Germany in 6 weeks. Which feels like its tomorrow.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,748 ✭✭✭daheff

    Was the job originally to be asked in Germany, and what part is it to be in?

    Do you speak German? Will you need to be able to speak it for your job?

    What about your partner? Will she work when you move? Does she speak German?

    Moving to another country is a big move... especially if you don't speak the language.

    Do you have friends in Germany?

    I don't want to put you off this job. It could be a fantastic opportunity....but be aware Amazon pay well but expect their pound if flesh. You'll work a lot more hours than with the civil service....and probably to suit US timezones.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,884 ✭✭✭Tzardine

    No the original job was Irish based. This one involves a bit of travel around Germany.

    I don't speak German, but it is not actually required for the job. I queried this with the recruiter, but also a friend who used to work for them. Everything to do with work is through English.

    My wife also does not speak German, so she will have to find a job. She also speaks Spanish fluently, so there may be some options for her. But TBH she currently works in a low skilled job, and will in Germany, so with the AWS salary its grand if it takes her some time to find work.

    I have a brother that lives in the same city fortunately, so that's a great help with getting setup. He has a property lined up for me to rent already.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,870 ✭✭✭SouthWesterly

    Would you not just take a leave of absense from your current role.

    Unlike your AP role, the new one could well be axed if it suited amazon.

    It will give you the breathing space you need while having a fallback if needed.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,884 ✭✭✭Tzardine

    I would love to, but I am in the AP role under the 2 year period required to take a career break.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,189 ✭✭✭Furze99

    Well you'd be going in with your eyes open. You say "Amazon will also bin you pretty quick if they don't like the cut of your jib" so you could be at risk for a while until you make yourself indispensable, if that's possible. Web services and data centres will remain important as things develop, so there's that.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,870 ✭✭✭SouthWesterly

    Ouch! I'm not sure I'd be chancing moving to the public sector, particularly It in the current climate. Lots of IT sector jobs which were needed yesterday are gone today.

    How long before you have your 2 years?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,884 ✭✭✭Tzardine

    I actually need to look into the career break a bit more.

    I'm in the Public Sector, so I'm not a civil servant. I have 9 years continuous service in the PS, but in January of this year I took up my current job with a different PS employer.

    The circular says that to be eligible a civil servant needs to have "have satisfactorily completed two years continuous service". This is open to interpretation I think. I have more than two years continuous service for pension purposes, but my employer may say I have only 1 year. Although we are not civil servants, we follow all public service circulars.

  • Registered Users Posts: 823 ✭✭✭JamBur

    Why did you apply in the first place? Are you unhappy in the current AP role? It's a tough choice to make, but a nice choice to have

    Personally, I think I'd jump at the chance.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,884 ✭✭✭Tzardine

    I have recently finished a university course, and gained a couple of in demand certifications. My skills are in demand at the moment, and the prospect of more money was attracting me. The PS is also frustrating me a bit lately, in particular the slow pace of work, constant resistance to change and absolute shite that the unions are up to in our place lately.

    I have some staff that honestly if you gave everybody a Christmas bonus cheque of €10,000, most of them would be on to the union complaining that it was not an EFT and they had to go to the bank to lodge it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 31,266 ✭✭✭✭gmisk

    I would personally go for it!

    You only live once (I am an AP too btw).

    You could hang on and go for a PO comp? But it sounds like your frustrated with CS/PS so I think you have answered your own question.

    Post edited by gmisk on

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,281 ✭✭✭AmberGold

    I have interviewed at AWS and know a lot of people there in sales roles. It’s apparently a great place to work and the benefits are exceptional. My advice is to go for it. If you can make it through the loop you will have absolutely no problem finding a role if it doesn’t work out.

    There’s a lot of unjustified doom and gloom out there at the moment, things are never that bad that you won’t find a half decent role in a downturn.

    Post edited by AmberGold on

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,063 ✭✭✭Breezy_

    Amazon - they'll fire you shortly after

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    The next round of layoffs will decide that question for you.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,063 ✭✭✭Breezy_

    Push, Push, Push, Push

    Kip of a company

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,715 ✭✭✭cronos

    I'm not in Amazon, but another tech cloud company. Feel free to DM if I can help.

  • Registered Users Posts: 478 ✭✭Shauna677

    I would be inclined to stay in current rolefar far too much uncertainty out there at the moment.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,973 ✭✭✭HerrKuehn

    I really don't understand this. This is an absolute no-brainer. For some mystifying reason a lot of people really overvalue the permanent nature of the PS. If you take this job and it doesn't work out, you will find something better than your current position without issue. This is a huge opportunity, take the jump.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,973 ✭✭✭HerrKuehn

    It is interesting reading through some of the comments. Things will be safe if you stay in the PS, it is the easy option. You won't have to worry about losing your job, but as you say your salary is probably capping out at AP level (which is ok, but hardly a very high salary).

    To summarise

    • Promotion ceiling is probably AP level with salary max around 85k??
    • You joined 9 years ago so presumably on the new single pension scheme?
    • You don't like the culture in the PS.
    • You have recently gained qualifications that are in demand in the private sector.
    • Amazon have made a big offer, with shares and double your salary.
    • You are worried about potential tech layoffs.
    • You were not planning on moving abroad.
    • Your brother lives in the same city in Germany and has found a rental.

    If you join Amazon, you might get laid off at some point. But you will have gained experience that is very valuable in other companies, so will unlikely have to wait long to find something. You will probably also have to work longer hours than you do in the PS. So these are the potential negatives.

    For me, it is really a question of believing in yourself and backing yourself to do well. I work in an area (HFT) that is even riskier than normal tech, it can blow up in your face at any moment! I have had to work longer hours than normal jobs and I have had times with a fair bit of work stress. But, I have been earning multiples of the top of the AP salary scale and I don't have any of the other types of stress that people normally have around money or accommodation costs. For me that has been worth it.

    Also, maybe your partner could study in Germany as it is much easier to do so than here?

    I would say, back yourself, take the risk and reap the rewards.

  • Registered Users Posts: 365 ✭✭HGVRHKYY

    Do you mind sharing which course and certifications? Just curious if it would be something I could possibly do similar to in the future for similar opportunities

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  • Registered Users Posts: 17,915 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    Even if it went tits up you'd have the sign on bonus and the relocation (if you didn't spend it) along with the resettlement (if included)

  • Registered Users Posts: 29 irishguy1012

    I know I am late to the game but:

    • Consult with a solicitor before signing a contract. Try to get a clause put in there for some sort of protection against redundancy for first 12 months. Germany are really good for labour laws - look into their consultation / redundancy process. If they do make you redundant - you will have X months still employed to sort it out.
    • Germany is an outlier in Europe for all American tech companies which are under a lot more scrutiny there due to historical cold war issues and the civic nature of Germans. Amazon reached out to me for a role involving Germany (not actually in Germany) a few years back and rejected me at the final stage but asked me to re-interview a year later. My guess is the person that took it didn't last long due to the nature of the role itself.
    • All of the rumours you read about Amazon's PIP culture / stress issues are true. Take that into consideration also.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,063 ✭✭✭Breezy_

    Saw a few comments on Hackernews of foreigner folk in Europe that need visas offered rules in Canada, handing in their notice and then Amazon saying actually we don't need you. And when told about handing in notice they say tough sh1t, not our problem.

    Kip of a company.

  • 18 month gap on my CV because of them and when questioned on it for my current job told them I was in AWS during that time was told no worries you'll probably know the two ladies you'll be working with and sure enough lol

    Kip of a company is right.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,860 ✭✭✭3DataModem

    I don't have any specific advice for you OP, but when I was in a sort-of similar position (i.e. leave "safe" for "risky") it basically came down to

    "If I'm going to turn this down, then I'm basically admitting I'll turn EVERYTHING down."

  • Registered Users Posts: 36 gerdywerdy

    maybe a career break from Public Sector job which gives you option to come back if it doesn't work out in Germany

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,982 ✭✭✭tinytobe

    Congrats and let us know how it goes.

    By the sounds of it you can return to your public sector job anyway.

    Pls be warned that companies like AWS make all sorts of promises, if they want you and do everything imaginable if they want to fire you. Then there is also the question on KPIs and targets, and yes, they may play around with that, albeit German labour laws are very strong.