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Ask HN: What companies pay starting salaries similar to FAANG but aren't FAANG?
27 points by tomazio on Sept 25, 2018 | hide | past | web | favorite | 10 comments
I've read a good amount of threads in the last couple months saying getting hired by one of the FAANG companies will get you the best compensation package for an entry level position, while simultaneously seeing many people saying working at one of the FAANG companies isn't all it's made out to be and some people even saying it made them worse off. So my question is are there even companies that pay compensation levels similar to that of FAANG companies for entry level positions? And if so what companies are they?



Well if you look at how you get compensated at a FAANG company you get

- salary

- bonus

- equity(in the form of restricted shares)

Note that the last one is often the kicker that can make you money. if your company does well this last component can dwarf all the others.

So maybe start by looking at who compensates in the same manner:

- Hedge Funds

- Bulge Bracket firms on Wall Street

- Lower status tech companies (your Twitter, Dropbox, etc), note, not intending to insult these companies, just pointing out that they aren't as desirable places to work as FAANG's.

- ICO funded companies. They have sooooo much money and they'll spend it all.

If you want to h ave a comfortable retirement then diversify your portfolio.

If you want to be wealthy then you usually have to concentrate. Look at all the wealthy people you know, almost all will have earned their wealth from a single source. They tend to diversify later on in life.


> Look at all the wealthy people you know, almost all will have earned their wealth from a single source. They tend to diversify later on in life.

I think this might be reflective of "the bubble". I live in a pretty rural area, and all of the wealthy people I know got there by either being successful in a family business - usually livestock - or by diversifying once they got to ~$150k / year in 2018 money. Most of them have several rental properties and either a small business of their own or have invested in multiple small businesses in the area.


Farms, small businesses and real estate examples are examples of concentration to make wealth and not diversification.

So it sounds like you agree with me.

What am I missing?


I think you'd be hard-pressed to find those jobs as they would be exceedingly rare. FAANG companies can typically offer those salaries because they have the pipeline / structure to make new developers valuable and have the bankroll to support those salaries while you learn. Smaller companies without as much cash can't make that sort of investment.

If those sort of jobs exist for new hires, and I'm not sure they do for new grads, they'd most likely be small, extremely well-funded startups and they would be looking for a very specific skillset to drive value quickly (and typically a new grad wouldn't have those kinds of skills).

My two cents. I'm a decade past the new grad hustle and I haven't really kept my ear close to the ground, but I haven't heard of anything like what you are seeking.


Oath attempts to be competitive in pay. The problem you're hearing is that no job is going to be perfect. Working at Google isn't all it's made out to be because of course it's not. They'd have you believe that the moment you step foot as a new hire at Google, your life will be filled with purpose, you'll become more fit, and you're given a free ticket to heaven. Of course that's ridiculous because no job does that for you. You make your own life and find happiness by creating your own purpose. A company can never provide that for you.


Blockchain startups, consulting companies, law tech, hedge funds, plenty more around the Bay Area. Don't just focus on compensation though, focus on which one will help you gain the most future proof experience while being able to comfortably afford the area. Personally I've never considered FAANG as a realistic option due to insane competition and strong lack of desire to do competitive programming, and am doing perfectly fine along the career track.


I got some pretty high offers from hedge funds (slightly higher than FAANG) on the east coast for a software engineer position working in infrastructure. Granted, half of the compensation was rolled in the annual "performance bonus", but that's how that industry works, they typically don't give equity away.


(For anyone else clueless about this acronym:) FAANG = Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, & Google.


One of these things is not like the others... and where's Microsoft?


I'm sure Twitter and GitHub are close, plus any other funded, growing tech company with HQ in the bay area.

Established companies like IBM, Cisco, etc. probably won't be close. You're looking for companies that are relatively recently founded and funded.




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