How to Prepare for the Amazon Coding Challenge

Coding challenges are stepping stones to land your dream job. Many tech giants use coding challenges to filter out candidates. They conduct several coding challenges, which attract programmers from all around the world. They give a chance for programmers to solve complex programs and win rewards and cash prizes.

Amazon looks out for candidates having a creative perspective on a given problem. But, it is said to have the toughest coding challenges of all tech giants. Do you want to know what it takes to crack the Amazon coding challenge? Read on.

Here’s what we’ll cover in this article:

  • What Is a Coding Challenge?
  • The Amazon Coding Challenge
  • Topics to Prepare for the Amazon Coding Challenge
  • Problems Asked in Amazon Coding Challenges
  • How to Prepare for an Amazon Coding Challenge
  • FAQs on Amazon Coding Challenges
  • Want to Crack Your Next Amazon Interview?

What Is a Coding Challenge?

Coding challenges are conducted on platforms like HackerEarth, where programmers from across the globe participate to win exciting rewards and sometimes job offers from top tech companies. You need to have a firm grip on data structures and algorithms to participate and win these challenges. 

The Amazon Coding Challenge

Amazon hires candidates through HackerEarth and TechGig throughout the year. You can solve earlier completed problems for practice before you attempt the current live challenges. Participating in these challenges won’t qualify you for a job offer from Amazon. But, you can land a coding interview for a software development engineer role.

Amazon mostly hires people with a strong background in algorithms, data structures, and puzzles. Be prepared with your basics, and you’ll be good to go. 

HackerEarth Coding Challenges

HackerEarth conducts coding challenges such as Coding Challenge for Women, Amazon ML Challenge, and Amazon SDE Hiring Challenge. They test your programming skills on data structures and algorithms. You can submit your programs using any programming language like Python, Java, C++. 

They provide the requirements of the challenge beforehand. And they also provide information on what the coding challenge rewards you with. Few challenges might land you a coding interview at Amazon, and few challenges may reward you with various cash prizes.

TechGig Amazon Coding Challenge

TechGig has a unique coding challenge, where there are two levels of the challenge.

Level 1 is a coding round where you’re given five hours to solve a coding problem. This tests your real-life problem-solving skills.

Level 2 is an idea submission round, where you get 25 days to submit your idea/approach for a problem statement mentioned in Level 2.

Topics to Prepare for the Amazon Coding Challenge

The Amazon Coding Challenge mainly consists of problems related to data structures and algorithms.

In data structures, you can expect questions based on the following topics:

In Algorithms, you can expect questions related to:

Problems Asked in Amazon Coding Challenges

Following are the kinds of problems you can expect in an Amazon Coding Challenge:

  1. Given an array of integers and a key, determine if the sum of any two integers equals the key.
  2. Merge two sorted linked lists so that the resulting linked list is also sorted.
  3. Design a vending machine.
  4. Implement a radix sort algorithm.
  5. Write a program to find duplicate numbers in an array if it contains multiple duplicates.
  6. Write a program to reverse a linked list in place.
  7. Write a program to sort a linked list in Java.
  8. Write a program to print duplicate characters from a string.
  9. Write a program to count the vowels and consonants in a given string.
  10. Write a program to reverse words in a given sentence without using any library methods.

How to Prepare for an Amazon Coding Challenge

Here are some tips to get you started:

  • Choose Your Programming Language: Choose an object-oriented programming language you’re comfortable with, Python, Java, or C++, and master the basics. Practice preparing programs in this language and understand the nuances of the language.
  • Know Your Basics: Learn the basics of data structures and algorithms thoroughly. You don’t want to waste time at the last minute by Googling how to perform a deep copy. Learn the basics and keep practicing. Solve as many previous Amazon coding challenges as you possibly can.
  • Participate in Discussion Forums You should go through various discussion forums to understand different ways to solve a problem. It expands your knowledge and improves your creative skills.
  • Spend Time on Solving Problems: Coding challenges are not that easy. They take hours to solve. While practicing, follow this technique — first, understand the problem description, and next, think about how to approach it. 

Useful Resources for Preparing for the Amazon Coding Challenge

You can go through the following books to hone your coding challenge or coding interview prep: 

  • “Cracking the Coding Interview” by Gayle Laakmann McDowell
  • “100 Coding Challenges for Cracking Facebook, Amazon, Google Interview” by Akshay Ravindran
  • “Python Challenge” by Pm Heathcote
  • “Learn Data Structure and Algorithms With Golang” by Bhagvan Kommadi

FAQs on Amazon Coding Challenges

Q. Is there any specific requirement to participate in the Amazon coding challenge?

A. Most coding challenges don’t have any requirements. But some of them do, and they mention it in the challenge description itself.

Q. Does Amazon conduct coding challenges in their interview process?

A. Yes. Amazon also conducts coding challenges during their on-site interview process. To learn more about Amazon’s interview process, read Amazon Interview Process Guide.

Want to Crack Your Next Amazon Interview? 

If your end goal is to nail an Amazon tech interview, check out our technical interview checklist, interview questions page, and salary negotiation e-book to get interview-ready! Also, read How Hard is it to Get a Job at Amazon and Amazon Interview Process Guide for specific insights and guidance on Amazon tech interviews.

Having trained over 9,000 software engineers, we know what it takes to crack the most challenging tech interviews. Since 2014, Interview Kickstart alums have been landing lucrative offers from FAANG and Tier-1 tech companies, with an average salary hike of 49%. The highest ever offer received by an IK alum is a whopping $933,000!

At IK, you get the unique opportunity to learn from expert instructors who are hiring managers and tech leads at Google, Facebook, Apple, and other top Silicon Valley tech companies.

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