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I’ve seen some personal websites have a Job History page, complete with how long they were there, why they left, and salary transparency. This seems like a really good thing to me, but I’m curious how others perceive it. Especially as managers. Has anyone had a negative or positive experience as a result of these pages?

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    I’m not against this but it doesn’t convey nuance of working conditions and what we’ll put up with. I had something longer typed out but I recently went from IC at a large company to freelance and I found the perfect position at a firm that doesn’t require check-ins, no standups, nothing other than once in awhile a business owner will have a request I can accept or deny. No pressure to get things done (they took the website down for 4 days for maintenance to count inventory!). I make about 40% of what I was making previously and maybe work 10-15 hours a week. So I realize I’m incredibly fortunate but I’m almost not willing to share my salary so that companies don’t see a low rate and see my resume and think they should be charging less.

    Sharing salaries I think really only works in some relatively small corners of the tech world. That’s not a bad thing, and I’m glad it works for some people. I’m also glad it gives people confidence to ask for more, but maybe I’m nostalgic and miss the time when it wasn’t simply about the paycheck and it was fun? That’s where I am now, I love that I’m basically using my job to fund my side projects. I’d love if there was some place where you could see places that are genuinely cool but pay less. I know too many places that take advantage of that to simply charge less and then you find out there’s impossible deadlines and 8AM standups to make sure you’re awake and people freaking out if you’re not on Teams on a Friday afternoon.

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      Congrats on finding something that works for you and gives you the space to do what you love! This is so much better than the focus on optimizing for higher numbers.

      But note that freelance numbers don’t really compare to employee salaries anyway. Employees typically work full-time and have a lot of security that freelancers don’t have (think retirement funds, health insurance etc). Freelancers can work as many or as few hours as they see fit, and have to take care of all the insurance themselves.

      Regarding “other factors” (as in, what do we put up with), I think Glass Door is a pretty useful indicator of both typical salary and honest reviews of positives and negatives of working at companies. I’ve certainly seen reviews point out the more toxic aspects of some places I’ve worked at. The funny thing is that this is very individual - whether you even notice or whether it affects you at all may depend a lot on your particular circumstance too.

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        Oh I’m well aware that freelance numbers don’t compare :D, but a lot of companies still play the 1099/hourly-contractors-as-employees game. And I mean a lot. It is rare when I’m able to state the hours I want to work, most places want 40 hours (or more!) and want 9-5. It would be nice to see this go away and either correctly classify employees as W2 or treat them as actual contractors. I can’t imagine hiring someone to paint my house and having status meetings in the morning, etc.

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          Report them to the IRS.

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        Yeah, I’m taking a huge lifestyle paycut at my current job. I’m fine with the tradeoff, but I don’t want to be locked into a lower salary forever if I ever want to go back.

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        I’ve found that posting mine publicly (https://www.jvt.me/salary/) has been hugely beneficial, both for me and to make it more visible to others what they should be asking for. No negatives found as part of the recent job hunt, either

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          I feel like I’d need to check in with my spouse on this because the downside is every marketing and credit firm could find your salary history and target you as such. For example, just working at a big tech company gets me a lot of messages from money managers.

          I love the idea of it and routinely tell folks in private what I make so they can negotiate better. I might at least create a harder to find page of it (thinking of a static page with appropriate headers and some tighter controls via CDN). I’m just not sure I want the things I literally block with DNS to have that data and want to try to figure out a way to prevent that.

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            Thanks for sharing!

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              You’re welcome! I save others’ I come across at https://www.jvt.me/tags/salary/ - got a few folks in the UK who’ve done it off the back of mine which is nice ☺

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              You were earning more or less minimum wage when you started at Intel?

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                Yep, as an intern, salaries aren’t great. At least we get paid in the UK, but it ain’t much 😅 ended up being the same amount (minus cost of living) as my student loan

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                  Ah, OK, just skimmed over it and I didn’t see you were an intern then :)

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                    Is that pro-rated? That looks to be in the right ballpark for what we pay for a three-month internship. The equivalent annual salary is four times that. Interns in the US are generally paid more but when I was at the university of Cambridge it was pretty common that PhD students who went on internships would earn more than their supervisors for the three months of the internship.

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                      Sorry by intern I mean a year long placement student. So yep, that was the salary across the year, not based on just a summer 🙃

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                My sources tell me that the The Trimodal Nature of Software Engineering Salaries in the Netherlands and Europe is an accurate representation of tech salary breakdown in Northern Europe. Techpays trying to solve this problem.

                IMO there are two main problems:

                • In many EU cultures from North (UK) to South (Greece), discussing salaries can be considered rude on both sides (bragging vs prying). Of course, context matters.
                • The ones that are on the high brackets won’t publicly discuss salaries for many reasons. Most times, this is explicitly requested by companies although there’s no legal binding as far as I know. In the UK there’s an act prohibiting employers to have a say on employees discussing salaries.

                Another point that has to be made is that comparing salaries is a bit hard, in Europe. Countries have different and rather complex tax schemes, so making for example X amount as a contractor might be better than 2X as a hired employee or vice-versa depending on personal situation (tax residence, etc.).

                Making 4k after taxes in a remote Greek location might better than making 12k after taxes in London given the fact that the food is infinitely better, top-notch sea is close-by and real estate is considerably cheaper. You won’t have amazing musicals, dear friends, buzzing tech communities, fancy shops, high quality schools, etc.

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                  The problem I have with this is that I know that I am making a lot more than quite a few people I know personally and I don’t want to make this awkward. If all your friends are in similar pay bands, this may be an option, but if you are well off, but don’t want to talk about it all the time or create situations where you feel you have to “pick up the tab” then this is not a good idea.

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                    Why do you think you’ll have to talk about it all the time or buy your friends things? Are you sure the people you’re talking about are your friends?

                    My friends’ incomes exist on a pretty broad spectrum, ranging from part-time minimum wage to metacryptofintech bubble money. None of them makes a big deal of it or expects the higher earners to pay for more things.

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                      Yes, I am very sure I am talking about friends. Thanks for asking.

                      Money is a weird topic in my society and with an energy crisis and high inflation it is an even more “hot” topic these days. We have friends that may end up not being able to properly heat their appartement over the winter. That is pretty heavy if you ask me. If everyone gets by on what they have, fine. Things are not that simple as of late though.

                      I see it this way: There are 3 parties that need to know how much I make: me, my employer and the tax office. That’s it.

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                        When I was in morocco I was told a story about the berber people (apparently they are the natives of the region, they live in the mountains mostly) and their take on this situation is somewhat similar to yours; people must be allowed to maintain their pride. However where it differs is if one household is struggling.. then they may wake up to find anonymous contributions outside their house (some livestock or food or whatever). The value of savings is considered less when compared to the social fabric, people would rather give up economic advantage than see their neighbours suffer poverty and hard choices. Currently I don’t see many who think things through to the end like this, most will not have any faith in their peers and therefore wouldn’t “waste” (from their pov) money (on preserving the commons) for fear of being taken advantage of or the contribution being allocated differently than they’d like. For me this is further evidence that our culture is not sustainable.

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                          I agree, to an extent. I wouldn’t go talking about my salary to friends unless they asked. I think making the information public on my website, which is more targeted towards others in my field as opposed to my friends/family, would be more for people in a similar point in their career to be able to take as a reference. I’d just as soon anonymously contribute my salary/job info to an aggregate/search engine, but IME those tend to be walled gardens and gate information unless you provide your own. I don’t want to support that

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                      I bet management at a lot of companies would love this, in that it gives them an enormous negotiating advantage when they’re deciding how much to offer you. A common piece of advice in salary (or really, any) negotiation is to get the other guy to put a number on the table first, and publishing your salary means you’ve anchored the discussion before it even begins.

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                        Not sure what people do elsewhere but here in the UK most of my peers interview & line up new jobs before they quit their old one. So if the offer is too low, we don’t take the job.

                        I think that is fairly common, so I don’t see the tactic you outline being very effective. I also think most employers understand that they have to pay more than you’re currently on to make it worth your while to switch.

                        For what it’s worth I also tend to politely decline when recruiters reach out about positions without a salary range attached.

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                          To add to that, from the other side:

                          We hire people that we want to join us and (usually) stay at the company for a long time. The offer that we make assumes:

                          • If you’re as good as we think you are, you will have other jobs.
                          • Once you’re working for us, recruiters will take that into account in making offers to you.

                          If your current salary is low and we give you a low offer as a result, then we risk losing you now to another company that gives you a better offer. If everyone does the same, then once you’re working for us then you’re going to be in a good position to leave with a better offer if we’re paying you below what someone at your level should be earning.

                          A lot of the data is available in aggregate on levels.fyi. If we offer you a position with a prefix ‘Senior’ then a recruiter knows the salary range that this includes and, if they want to hire you away from us, then they will offer somewhere near the top of that. If we give you an offer at the low end, then that means that you’re very likely to get a much better offer in a year or two. That means either:

                          • We’re offering job satisfaction that is so much higher than you think that you can get elsewhere, or
                          • You’re going to leave after one or two years.

                          We hope that the first is true, but realistically we need to assume that other companies can also provide rewarding offers.

                          In summary, I’d consider that an employer that is willing to make a lowball salary offer based on the fact that you’re currently paid badly to be a red flag. Another big one to watch out for is signing stock bonuses with vesting that’s weighted to the end of the period (one of the major tech companies gives you 5% of your signing stock at the end of the first year, 15% at the end of the second. This saves them a lot of money because a large proportion of their new hires don’t stay even the full two years).

                          I and two of the folks on my team came directly from university jobs. The University pay scale is public and so everyone can see the pay range for the job titles that we had. This didn’t stop us from getting job offers where the total compensation was several times what we were being paid before.

                          That also somewhat highlights the point from @geoff above: I took the job at the university because the pitch was basically that they wanted to pay me for doing the things that I was doing in my spare time for fun and give me much better equipment to work with.

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                        I wish this were the standard in our industry, even from a regulatory POV. If all IC salaries were public, we’d have much better information to negotiate salaries.

                        One thing that concerns me is that if it’s not the majority or almost all people doing it, there will be biased data as there might be a correlation between values/experience and whether people decide to share values.

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                          I don’t think I would put much stock into it as a hiring manager simply because everyone editorializes their job history and duties. I also don’t care what you made at various places.. why should I? We have a range set and will offer what we think you should be paid (50th percentile of national average for that position, generally). If you agree to it, awesome! Your past pay doesn’t come into the equation.

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                            Honestly I’ve only seen Cadey’s and I think it’s mostly to show others you don’t have to sell yourself cheap, and not a bragging thing. (props to Cadey) If you’re displaying this managers should be the last thing on your mind.

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                              levels.fyi and google sheets of FAANG salaries are a thing.

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                                I put out my salary history on my site. My logic is that if companies want something good there then they should put more number in my raises and job offers. If this makes some company think they have a negotiating advantage, just because I got that salary in the past doesn’t mean I’m expecting it in the future.