Prior to our visit to the Amazon location in Dublin, I was not aware that there were separate departments of the organization aside from their retail operations. Today our group met with some team members of Amazon Web Services (AWS), which was both interesting and eye-opening. During our visit, we discussed the technology of Alexa, the AWS operations and hiring process, and what the future looks like for Amazon as a company.
One of the biggest takeaways from this visit was how large and powerful Amazon really is. One of the team members told us that if Amazon were to shut down, 1/3 of the internet would also shut down, including Netflix. We also discussed how Amazon is collaborating with other businesses and individuals to incorporate Alexa technology into more products. For instance, Amazon is currently partnering with GE to create a circular lamp that lights up and has Alexa built into it.
Another interesting takeaway from the visit was learning about Amazon’s company culture. The company has been notably secretive and mysterious to the public in past years, but one of the AWS team members, Steven, shared with us that the company is trying to change that. Amazon also encourages its employees to speak up about new ideas or thoughts they may have, and gives people the chance to move around in the company since they value long-term talent retention.
Overall, the visit to Amazon was different than I was expecting, but still pretty cool. Interestingly enough, of my good friends from home is interning at Amazon’s US headquarters in Seattle this summer, so I look forward to having a conversation with him about my impressions of the company and comparing that with his experience going forward.