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Ask HN: Have you ever been “poached” internally? Is this even a thing?
37 points by dvtrn 5 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 59 comments
A few jobs ago a coworker of mine, a fellow Senior Site Reliability Engineer who-like I-was frustrated with how our company manifested 'Devops', and also-like I-had zero interest in trying to play the 'hearts and minds' game of undergoing a devops transformation did something stunning (to me):

Because we were embedded with different development teams, we attended their stand ups and got intimate knowledge of what they were working on.

This friend of mine decided one day he'd pick a random ticket from this team's backlog, and assigned it to himself. He worked it, he wrote the code, followed all the same testing and QA steps the dev team did, merged it in, it got deployed.

Some would argue "this is what SRE's ought to be doing in the first place" and I agree, but lived experience has shown me the philosophy of Google's SRE way either gets perverted and bastardized entirely, or just completely abandoned for reasons that are taken entirely out of the hands of the SRE practitioners by engineering managers and org leaders (Warning, cynicism ahead: In my opinion for reasons due to poor capacity and resource planning by those very same managers and leaders)

Anyway, my friend started doing this more and more. To the point that he messaged me one day saying he was leaving the team. I asked him where his new offer was. He said "no I'm not leaving the company, I'm leaving the team".

The dev team manager noticed his work contribs, and when one of their developers left, grabbed our guy and pulled him onto their team proper.

My questions: - Is the a thing that anyone else has seen happen? - Have you done this/had this kind of internal "poach" happen to you (or someone you care about?) - ....would you do it?

Your post reads like you think this is scandalous. I’d say it is totally normal in many places even encouraged for people to move between teams and roles in large organizations. What your coworker did was clever in that he demonstrated his skill to the hiring team making it way more likely that they would be open to taking him whether it was he or them that initiated the conversation about moving when the time came. Not dissimilar to how the best way to get a job once you have work experience is through references from past co-workers.

> I’d say it is totally normal in many places even encouraged for people to move between teams and roles in large organizations.

My first job out of graduate school, forty years ago, was an office job at a large public university in the U.S. That university announced all nonfaculty job openings through a central office, and current employees were welcome to apply for internal transfers. I was not unhappy in the job I had, but I did interview a couple of times for jobs in other departments that paid a bit better and seemed more interesting. I didn’t get either job, but I came way feeling positive about the process, as I felt that I had been evaluated fairly and that other opportunities would come along eventually. If I hadn’t moved overseas a couple of years later, I might very well have continued working at that university until retirement.

My story is a bit different. I started at a company where the engineers hated the customer support team and refused to do any work for them, because they would ask for quite a lot of help. At some point, I finished all of my work early and they kept asking our team for help. I noticed the other teammates wouldn't give them the time day.

But, all of their requests ultimately helped our customers which was good for the company. And, more importantly, it helped some of our best customers that were keeping the lights on. I decided to go ahead and help them complete several of the surprisingly difficult tasks for quite a variety of customers. Several of those customers had threatened to drop us and scratching those itches were all they really needed to feel comfortable with our products.

I half regretted it later on when I was laid off and I asked for recommendations from my fellow team members and manager. They declined. I turned to ask for recommendations from the support team I had helped. They said, "You didn't accomplish anything. Why would we recommend you?"

I said, "Wait, what are you talking about? I helped you with so many customer issues that were show stoppers, when no one else would." I was a bit offended and depressed by this, because I didn't expect it.

And, then they responded that if you can list us a few of the things you think you did for us we'll think about it. I listed a dozen in fairly extensive detail. They did apologize and agreed to recommended me but it was done so grudgingly. It was a very strong lesson to me that the other engineers there already understood well. But, I was hard working, naïve and socially awkward. And, in the end I almost walked away with nothing to show for it.

Wow, that's sad. Sometimes I just don't understand, why people (those teams) can not show the respect, that would be due.

I've seen it, and I've been it, on both sides of the table. But this isn't "poaching", a term loaded with unnecessary negative connotations. Your friend advertised their skills effectively in an internal market, subsequently transferring to a location where those abilities might create more value.

Not sure why this might be considered a stunning, surprising, or intrinsically undesirable outcome.

Your friend made a conscious choice to get transferred internally; poaching sounds like the desire came from another team, but it sounds like your friend initiated the process.

I’ve transferred to another position by applying for a position (as a stunt); a talk with my boss’s boss and a week of vacation, and I was on another team.

The director of engineering even encouraged internal transfers, since it probably solved a problem in his mind.

It helped me that I’d voluntarily reviewed code for all other teams, so less onboarding.

This is incredibly common at most BigCos, I would drop the term "poach", as others have mentioned.

For talented people this is can easily be a win-win all around.

Obviously for the team hiring the hiring process is tremendously derisked. They've already seen the candidate in action, and like what they see.

This is also great for the candidate because a huge part of the risk when accepting an offer is issues that might come up with the larger organization out side of the people you work/interviewed with.

Not that I'm ever one to cheer for the company, but it's also a win for the BigCo as it keeps talent inside and engaged with the company, without them leaving from getting bored or having someone outside offer better total comp.

The only people that "lose" out in this are the initial hiring managers, but if they're remotely competent they'll understand and continue a positive working relationship... and if they're not competent it's good they're losing staff.

The "would you do it" is no different than any other job offer: do you like the team, the comp, the projects? The biggest difference being the interview process is radically de-risked, and the transition is much smoother.

I got tired of working as an engineer in the marketing org at Mozilla and told my boss I wanted to move to another team, so we shopped around a bit and found that the team working on web tools used by Firefox devs (e.g. crash analysis, experiment system) had a headcount to trade, and a few weeks later I was on a different team and the marketing team was interviewing to hire someone new. It was pretty normal and happened a lot.

Who-like I-was frustrated with how our company manifested 'Devops', and also-like I-had zero interest in trying to play the 'hearts and minds' game of undergoing a devops transformation

This sounds juicy. More details, please.


I'm a Senior SRE, started off my tech career (21 years ago) on a help desk at a law firm, worked up to where I am now through various startups, roles, promotions.

It's been my own personal observation in other tech communities when a Devops practitioner or Site Reliability Engineer is bemoaning some of the more common antipatterns[1] that manifest when companies decide "We're Devops now", the popular responses are some variation of "be the change you want to see".

The person doing the venting is often encouraged to seek out ways of slowly winning 'hearts and minds' to adopting better practices, implementing better processes that more closely align with the ideal state of Devops and Site Reliability Engineering, take on the additional work of being the guiding hand for your organization to help them become the kind of Devops that actually practices Devops versus merely pretending.

Sorry but...


At least for me. I've been down that road, done that work, it's exhausting, it's painful, it's gotten me fired, and its made me want to quit the industry entirely. I've taken less pay to join teams that were more self-aware about who they are, the challenges they had and what works for them and that's far more ideal than trying to slowly convert a business from (for a lack of a better phrase) pretend Devops to practiced devops.

Hope that clarifies what I mean, then, when I say 'I have zero interest in doing the hearts and minds thing'.


[1] https://www.devopsgroup.com/blog/twelve-devops-anti-patterns...

So would you say DevOps is ... more a "brand" than useful proscription for anything? Or what are its useful / redeeming features, in your view?

Don't mean to be dismissive, I'm still trying to figure out what it is, actually. In reality, as opposed to the stuff people like to hear themselves say about it.

Good question. Had to sit here and think about how I wanted to answer that one.

Proscriptively? Probably. Inherently, not as much, but maybe.

What I mean is, in some cases it probably is just a ‘brand’ in that I’ve just had too many experiences with companies that hired “DevOps Engineers” due to a lack of hiring discipline to actually bring in a SME for a critical component.

This is how I think some Devops practitioners end up getting shit “thrown over the wall” and probably lies at the root of what they’re complaining about.

So yeah I would say Devops is probably more of a brand than a transformational way of delivering software for SOME companies. These are the “pretenders” IMO.

To your other question, what are redeeming features? Also a good question. One in fact. . . that forces me to really sit down and think about. I haven’t ever thought about the question of “what’s redeeming about Devops” as a Devops practitioner.

Thanks - that echoes a lot of what I'd been quietly suspecting.

I just didn't have heart to raise the issue with the resident 'DevOps Evangelist' a certain place I worked at recently.

Uh, yeah. Especially in large companies, this is common practice, even without that transition you describe.

It is often much easier to hire internally than externally. And that's good. It keeps people happy within the company vs forcing folks to move on. Onboarding new employees is expensive. If you can shift 1 and keep them happy vs having them leave and having to externally hire 2 it's a win.

For my team (I have no hiring decision, just input), I frequently look for smart people dissatisfied with their work somewhere else. Things I look for: people wanting to work on something more interesting, work with a higher performing team, having greater "impact" with their work, wanting a new skillset, stuck without upward mobility, wanting opportunities for more visibility, etc.

It also avoids the gamble of a resume and behavioral interview. You know the person and can take a reasonable guess on their "fit" with the team. You know their actual skillset ("hard" and "soft" skills) vs claimed.

We've lost a few to job hopping, but for the most part, it's a much better predictor of someone who will stick around, be happy, and be a valuable contributor.

You do have to followup with being an advocate for those high performing people. That can just be recognizing their work publicly or pay/promotion opportunities.

Also, if someone is frustrated with the job on my team, I try to use my internal connections to find a place that they will be happy. I really do care about them as humans and see happiness and job satisfaction as more important than hoarding them.

From the other side, every job I've taken (internally or externally) based on people I know has worked out great. Every one I took by just applying to a posting, notsomuch. No it doesn't sound fair or like a meritocracy, but it's human. Walking in with trust and understanding is a real advantage.

I got pulled into a meeting telling me I'd been made redundant at short notice (UK based). A few mins later I was asked if I would consider moving teams. I moved to another team for a few months and did some training, and did a load of projects for them, it worked out well for both of us. They then moved me back to my original team. This kind of stuff happens all the time. If I was a manager and even as a tech lead, I'm constantly looking to pull in the best people, and it's much easier to do that internally rather than recruiting.

Back at the start of my career I worked for a mid-sized software company that was growing by buying small companies in our general field. I was assigned to work on integrating one of those company's products with my team's product. Mostly because I was young and not tied down and could happily spend a couple weeks at a time in another state.

Once I finished that, the CTO decided I was going to be the guy he sent around to all the acquired companies to work out the technical integration plans. Obviously integration was a priority, but no one understood all the technical details of the various pieces that needed to fit together.

I wasn't really poached to another team, exactly, but I also had no direct work on my officially assigned project. I spent months and months bouncing around the country figuring out how to make everything work together. I kept my same manager, but all my work product went to the CTO.

It was kind of a weird situation on paper, but on the ground it made sense to have someone "outside the system" to be the one digging around in all the newly acquired projects. Obviously great for my career, and indirectly great for my manager's career. Heck, he has his own consulting business even now that's based on supporting and customizing that suite of software. He knows all the pieces from my work bouncing around.

I've done it twice at the same place. Can't share many details, but it worked out great. My direct supervisors would get frustrated with me for not focusing on exactly what they wanted, but I stayed motivated as long as their boss higher up the chain was impressed. Never been promoted before, but each transition brought me to a place of higher authority and pay. I generally recommend getting cozy with other teams, especially powerful ones, as part of a career progression strategy.

To answer your question, yes, this happens. The cybersec team tried to "poach" me a while back, and more recently I was asked by the VP of Cloud Operations to leave my technical lead role within engineering and become Sr. Manager of SRE (I accepted).

Speaking of which, what caught my eye in your post is the problem you identity with how SRE is usually practiced vs. what it was supposed to mean. My mandate in this new role is to update our practices and technology to make our software more reliable, and I'm shooting to accomplish that specifically by tackling that problem. In my opinion, there's a reason why the term "SRE" was coined, and it all centers around shaping the organization, _not_ the technology. In an organization with properly aligned incentives, the technology should follow. (Of course it's not entirely one or the other—tech can feed into incentives and help shape the org as well.)

I'm doing my best to carefully guard the term "SRE" here and educate people about its meaning because the ideas and philosophies it brings to the table are precisely what will allow me to deliver what I was asked. If this resonates with you or anyone reading this, send me a message. We're hiring.

Well, not directly me but indirectly yes. I do a bit of headhunting for friends and family and one of my close relatives is the sales lead in their company's local site. This relative has been trying to land a deal with a customer and needed to hire a person or two to work as subcontractors for this customer.

After a few months of finding no suitable applicants, they asked me for help. I managed to find a few candidates with the very specific skills required for the project and moved forward with one of them.

This company's recruitment is done by another site, not the local one my relative works at and they were so impressed with the prospective hire that they coaxed them to relocate to the city where the other site is located. Basically, the hire got poached as this is work that can't be done remotely and HQ wanted the hire for themselves.

My relative got their recruitment bonus which is approx 1/5th of their monthly salary. The reason I'm a bit miffed is because my relative would've gotten around 2-3 X their monthly salary as bonuses and comission from the deal that they still can't finalize.

Yes it's happened to me and I have initiated such an internal move to bring people into my team also. It's completely fine to do and in the right circumstances can be beneficial for everyone (old and new teams and the person concerned). In spite of what anyone may think, it's not in your manager's interests to keep you hostage in your current team if you want to leave.

A couple of things I would like to stress for the less experienced folks on here as internal mobility can put people's noses out of joint if not handled well:

1) If you're trying to leave your current team, don't be a problem to your current manager. They will probably need to approve the move and lots of places have a rule where they won't transfer someone who is an underperformer etc because that just shifts a problem around the org. So be a good team member if you want to leave. Do your job and your boss will say "yeah it sucks to lose them, but ....". That's what you're shooting for.

2) If you leave a team, don't be a dick about it. Just like you shouldn't badmouth an ex-partner or ex-company, don't badmouth your ex-team or ex-boss. It's unnecessary, unhelpful, reflects badly on you and doesn't do anything good. Just don't. It wasn't the right place for you? Fine. Your colleagues are still in that team so be nice. If nothing else, you will need to work with these people crossfunctionally in the future.

3) Remember that your boss and the boss of your new prospective team may not have as many options as you think. There are all sorts of BS considerations that go into whether someone can grow or shrink an existing team. Be patient and try to put yourself in their shoes and the process will go smoother.

Haven't done this myself, but in large orgs politically savvy engineers do this all the time. A similar play if you're more senior is to pick a problem to solve that requires coordination with a team you want to be on, lead the effort, and use the success to convince the manager of that team to bring you on board.

Nothing wrong with it, would do it in a heart beat if I wanted out from my current team and couldn't just ask.

When I was just out of school 20ish years ago, I wanted to take my CS degree to an application development position. I got hired, but it was more of a technical Product/BA/QA role, not writing code. I did the job as asked, learned the systems, contributed value, etc - but I was also young and stupid. I complained about my role to anyone who would listen. I wanted to be a developer. Most team members encouraged me to stick it out, my time would come, or rolled their eyes. Or both.

At a team outing a few months in, I had too much to drink and approached the Tech Lead to complain about it. He looked at me square in the eyes and (basically) shouted - "There are hundreds of low and medium severity bugs in the bug database, go fix one then come talk to me! Better yet, fix a bunch and I'll come talk to you!"

(It worked, I was an app dev 3 months later.)

At a company where I once worked, there was a development team that started working on an orchestration system for a cloud platform called OpSource[1]. It was sort of a CloudFormation-like system but driven by XML (they were Java developers). The team consulted with some of us who worked on infrastructure. Most of my fellow team mates rejected the project, but I enjoyed attending the meetings and ended up embedded in the development team and delivered most of the code that did the orchestration. The project was successful and I went back to my own team for a while, but they pulled me back in to work on another project. I ended up working with them most of the remaining time I was an employee at that company, even though I wasn't connected to them on the org chart.

1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpSource

I've had two positions where most of my work was doing nothing but working in other teams. In one I was part of a computer simulation group where other teams in the company would come to us with simulation problems and one of us would go join their meetings, learn the problem, and work on it with them. Usually short term for weeks to months, though there were often repeat embeddings. In the other position I worked as a programmer supporting research and usually worked on multiple grant funded projects at the same time and the grants often ran out and new grants came in. So my work and the people I worked with was always changing and professors would often "borrow" or "loan" me to other professors. Professors and students would come and go adding more churn to the nature of the work. Sometimes I had a say in which projects I wanted to work on, sometimes I didn't. Technically I could have moved to any grant funded job in the university, moving from the CS to the Physics dept for example. In practice there wasn't a lot of grant funding that included funding for a staff programmer so I tended to work with a fairly small group of professors who brought in other professors on their projects.

In some of my other jobs shifting departments or teams would have been very difficult, the teams were territorial and kept boundaries and moving across those boundaries would be taken as a betrayal, so even if it was possible it would have created ill will between the teams, making working together more difficult. I recommend avoiding places like that.

Yet another workplace sought government grants and would encourage everyone to shop themselves to the various teams currently seeking grants. If the team won a grant you could stay with them and work on the grant. Or you could move to another grant seeking team and work with them. All you had to to was find someone who would give you a paycode to put on your weekly report, which was where your salary came from. I had a boss, but if I found my own paycode sources he was happy. It was described to me as forming small companies inside the main company.

Not software dev, but when I was a land surveyor for a civil engineering firm I got poached internally because I was doing loads of field surveying but I was also the only person at the company who knew anything about GPS and GIS, so they pulled me off the crew I was on and put me on the one doing all the geospatial work.

I lead a team of 7 developers at a ~200 person company. I’ve had several people on other teams ask if they could work on items from our backlog and one eventually transferred to our team full time.

I’ve also had my own directs tell me when they’d rather be working on another team. I’ve always honored these requests and I do everything I can to help them transition.

Early in my career I worked at Microsoft on a product I really wasn’t excited about. I was honest about this with my manager and he introduced me to friends in other orgs which eventually lead to me transferring to one of their teams. To this day I’m grateful for the generosity and want to have the same impact wherever I can.

It’s better for everyone if our primary goal is to make each other happy rather than extract as much “value” as possible from someone for our own benefit.

Yes, I have been poached. The new team’s tech lead started planting the seed. I was just wrapping up my previous project, was unhappy with my management chain, and decided to take him up on it. I was friendly with the new team’s management, so the tech lead didn’t really need to pull any strings.

> Have you done this/had this kind of internal "poach" happen to you

First job, was the QE and release build person for the team of embedded devs.

QE turned into QE automation (think AT commands in a loop & basic JTAG), release build work turned into being CVS admin & a sort of manual Jenkins job (come by my desk, drop a patch, get a debug build out faster than the dev laptops when the build server was idle).

And the result was that when a dev left, I was lifted into dev and someone else was hired into QE to run my scripts every week.

In under 2 years from start to finish, I was out of the door because it went from a work-item project to a time-driven project (so the faster you were, the worse the billable hours looked). I wasn't going to stick around office and fake overtime.

What you described doesn't really sound like poaching, but I think this is normal and it is pretty much how I built my career into the direction I wanted.

When I was a build engineer and wanted to do more tools work, I picked up tool tasks and got put onto the next project as a tools engineer. Later when I grew interested in doing more engine work, I picked up tasks that were related to our central engine tech, worked to minimize divergence, and fixed issues in a way that would get integrated back to the engine. Eventually I officially transferred to the engine team. In my experience "just doing it" is a very effective way to shift into the kinds of roles you're most interested in.

I work for an edtech organisation in the UK and I was poached internally by the cloud team. I was in an internal facing role running the team that looked after M365 and the Power Platform stuff, and the customer facing cloud team poached me to be on their team as a solutions consultant. I made leaving my old team as amicable as possible and I'm glad that I did, because now after a reshuffle my old team have all been relocated across to where I am anyway. It's still too early to say if it was a good move on my part or not, but I did end up with a pay rise that my colleagues in my old team aren't getting and I would probably have moved across anyway for the same salary that I was getting before.

It's the only way to grow in my org, and why I'm leaving. As a feature team my best engineers are poached for the platform team and I have to rehire for them.

I live in silo hell. I've had to backfill hire 3 of my 4 engineers this year. Two of which went to platform teams.

We’ve got internal mobility portal and process, other teams regullary publish open positions and you’re free to move unless there are couple impeding issues like PIP. There are couple interviews, one is about tech stuff, just to ensure that you will be able to carry on (I switched from Java to Node stack recently) and “culture”, to ensure that you’re ok with the way team works and don’t seem like a toxic addition. It is a normal situation to hop teams and no one thinks anything special about it.

I recently switched from between tech stacks and quite different ways of working and different products.

I was recently "poached" as an engineer myself. I really like working for the company I'm at, but was ready for a change and new challenges. A colleague I'd previously worked with was building a new team reached out to see if I'd join his team. It sounded like a great opportunity, so I said yes. It's been a good decision.

Internal poaching is hardly uncommon and in fact you'll often see engineers follow each other large companies in small flocks- on engineer is frustrated, gets an internal transfer, and tries to get the best engineers from thier old team to join thier new team is. This is networking (the interpersonal kind) at work.

Happens all the time. Big companies love this because instead of giving folks a raise they get a lateral interval move and come in way more productive

This is normal, companies want to organize their staff into the best roles they fit in to the projects which are most important. This is important for a healthy company. The manager would have obviously worked with higher management and there was some tradeoff to be made here, so it would have been let through, keeping in mind the persons interests(hopefully).

Google SRE is overinterpreted. they are a big company with lots of resources and exceptional engineers. It's not reasonable to model smaller companies like that.

Did this as a team member (the poachee) a few times; did it as a manager (the poacher) a couple as well.

As a team member, it wasn't about disliking my current team or workload; it was a way to get an out-of-band salary increase without leaving the company or the benefit stack that I liked.

As a manager? There's a lot of value -- sometimes literally months of lost productivity regained -- in hiring someone who already knows the product, culture, tools and reporting structures.

Seen it multiple times. But more discussion was involved - I would start ask questions and talk with other team not solve their issues without asking. I don't know how exactly other people went about it.

Imo, company either allows internal "poaching" or will have larger turnover. People need change once in a while, both psychologically and to learn something a bit new. And it breaks the us vs them mentality because you have friends in other teams.

If the company is comfortable with hiring internally (some aren't) then it's common. If people have good managers, the managers will give their direct reports a heads up when they see a position that they think the employee will like more and suggest they apply internally. You probably don't hear about it often because a selfless manager is the unicorn of the business world.

This happens a lot. In large companies you don't even need to "prove" yourself by creating PRs, most of the time the other team would be more than happy to "poach" you as you are a more proven commodity than anyone they can hire externally (they have knowledge of your work from internal commits, opinions of other devs and so on).

Very normal in my company. I was poached from another part of the company to the devops organization to lead a technical team that needed someone with better HR skills. I believe this was solely due to the reputation of me being well liked as well as professional. It wasn't an open position, I was just asked.

I’m on my 3rd team at a bigco at the moment. Putting a lot of emphasis on enabling team transfers is the thing that has kept me there.

There’s some politics to it, ie one org is losing a lot of people to another, so we aren’t supposed to actively recruit, but if they ask and are going to leave otherwise /shrug

I was poached by another department in a non-technical organization when I was young.

I also had a friend who was poached by the software engineers, when he was currently doing help desk type work.

Seems pretty normal, yes.

It happened to me and they put me in a position I have no interest being in. Then they hired someone to replace me that is useless so I’m still doing my old job and my current job. Can’t wait to leave.

I’ve been in at least five roles in eleven years at my current company, and projects frequently poach me for weeks or months at a time, sometimes leading to role changes, sometimes not. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but I enjoy it.

A small team of us self poached - we worked on a project that got killed by politics, so made a pitch to transfer a different group that we respected a bit more. Won’t say it’s perfect, but it is better.

I've had this happen at my current place, my pm kept raving about me and giving me alot of kudos. Another pm grabbed me and have a good relationship with her. It's nice to feel appreciated.

I’ve had a couple of managers approach me and try to poach me to their teams… usually it can cause some pretty bad blood so they’re usually pretty quiet about it.

Almost happened to me once, I turned it down because I'd just started and I felt a duty to the person that hired me. That was a good decision, because it would've moved me out of an engineering oriented department into a maintenance/infrastructure oriented one, which I was already good at, if I had taken them up on it I wouldn't have learned and grown the way I did.

If I was already familiar with my current role enough that it became repetitive and there was more to learn in the other team, absolutely I would do it. I've always got to be learning new things or I begin to lose my mind.

Most recently 5 months ago, before that 24 months ago. I'd say in large corps it's one of the better, and faster way of moving up in org chart.

I'm currently in the process of doing exactly that. Although formally, by applying internally for the same job but in another team.

this is normal in my case before I became a founder, and I was the "poached" one. no hard feelings for me--but my former boss hated me since. she still hates me... in fact, I believe this is very popular, especially with companies with politics-heavy culture, like banks, hedge fund, high growth startups (>~200 employees)

Yes, this is common, and good. It helps optimize company, team, and developer hapiness...

Switch teams without a 30% pay bump? Why bother, just interview.

I really like my company, have continuously advanced within it, and I’m at point in life that while I still care about money, the difference in my happiness of an extra $30-60k/year isn’t particularly material but a bad work environment would be.

Plenty of internal hires come with a pay bump and level bump as well.

Work visas :D

"A few jobs ago" ???

How frequent do you change your job?

this is quite normal in large organizations, happened to me quite a few times.

Normal and fine

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