In this final series of the three-part interview with Azureen Saiful Bahri, she explains further about the difference between working at SpaceX and Amazon, tips to apply for similar jobs, as well as her endgame.
“I’ve always wanted to be there (tech companies) because that’s where the future is.”
Azureen Saiful Bahri, an MRSM alumna and MARA scholar, pursued her foundation in INTEC, a UiTM affiliate with the goal of studying in the United States.
With a Bachelor’s degree in supply chain management from Michigan State University, Azureen landed a managerial role at SpaceX and is now working at – Amazon’s space satellite project called Kuiper.
SpaceX vs Amazon
Azureen mentioned that working under Starlink, SpaceX and Amazon’s Project Kuiper has its similarities and differences which made both working experiences unique.
Starlink and Project Kuiper are not only similar in providing low-latency and high-speed broadband connectivity; the working atmosphere of these two companies emphasises hyper creativity and innovation, and a higher rate of achieving goals and setting targets.
“Difference wise, SpaceX is all about speed, learning, and improving on the go. However, with Amazon, you have to dive deep and understand what the problems are to figure out a solution.”
In terms of pace, Azureen added that Amazon adopts a more calculative way of working.
Whenever a meeting is held, attendees are given 15 to 20 minutes to read a page of ideas before the floor is open for a discussion or debate.
Tips to enter tech companies
“Go through job applications or job postings although you’re not looking for a job. See what the industry wants from you right now.”
Despite coming from a non-engineering background, Azureen stressed the importance of looking into the companies that you wish to apply to.
She found her connection with SpaceX after watching their test launch which was broadcasted on YouTube at the time.
Through observing the mission online, she also managed to gauge what skill set was expected from SpaceX which then aided her during the interview stage.
Azureen said that expertise in your respective degree or field alone is not enough as being aware about current issues is just as vital. She adds that anyone can gain information through reading the news or other credible publications.
“You have to upskill everyday and learn on the spot.”
An example Azureen gave when asked about skills was speed reading. To elaborate, she said that there would be occasions where time is limited and the best thing she could do was grasp main points from an article or a book.
Unlocking the power of LinkedIn
When used correctly and strategically, LinkedIn can open doors in your career development.
Azureen secured a spot at SpaceX after trying her hand at LinkedIn job applications.
After receiving a recruiter email, she sat for multiple interviews with the hiring manager and subsequently, the director. The final stage required her to do an on-site presentation and three more interviews with shortlisted candidates.
Confidence is key
“I definitely had doubts. I was thinking that I might not be good enough to go for tech companies right out of college but I’ve always wanted to be there because that’s where the future is.”
Aware of her situation, Azureen told herself that she needed to plan wisely and obtain experience for a few years.
“I built my resume for seven years before I felt ready to apply for a tech company.”
She advised to take some time to equip yourself and have a plan during times where you feel like you lack confidence.
The end game
One final question remains – what is her endgame?
Azureen’s response to this question is to be an all-rounded person, professionally and personally.
Her wholesome journey has definitely taught us crucial life skills like exploring something new, planning ahead and being brave.
Watch the first two parts here:
Part 1: From MRSM to SpaceX, Azureen’s meteoric career in tech.
Part 2: INTEC alumna Azureen in the SpaceX and Amazon space race
Leave a Reply