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The Almighty Buck Programming Stats

Tech's Highest-Paid Engineers Are At Juniper 105

Phoghat writes "The guys at Glassdoor have compiled a list of the 25 tech companies with the best salaries for software engineers. Google and Facebook made the list, of course. So did Apple and Twitter. But the company at the very top is a bit of a surprise: networking gear maker Juniper Networks."
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Tech's Highest-Paid Engineers Are At Juniper

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Come back, come back!

  • I barely make half of the average of the 25th place company...
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Serves you right for living in British Columbia.

      • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

        Serves you right for living in British Columbia.

        Hey, I live in BC, though I only earn about $6000 less (ok, let's say about $10,000 if we include currency conversion) below #25.

        I did turn down a job that would've put my pay right in the middle of pack, too.

        But I will say I only work 40 hours a week, so there's that aspect. I don't put in crazy hours at all.

    • Well, Mark, maybe it's time to move up from Dairy Queen to Jack In The Box...

    • by CAIMLAS ( 41445 )

      Don't feel bad. At least you don't work for Juniper. That's a reputation an engineer can do without!

      Think of it this way: Juniper has to hire the best and brightest, because if they don't, they're fucked. Their products are horrible; they need drastic improvement, and they don't have the market share like Cisco does to muscle competitors or victims.

  • Bad data (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 18, 2013 @07:13PM (#45170747)

    Base salary is only a fraction of the compensation. I work for one of the top 5 and the base plus stock per year for a fresh COLLEGE GRADUATE engineer is higher than the "average" salary listed for the company. All this really says is that your company is in Silicon Valley where you need 100k a year to rent a decent apartment.

    • If you're a fresh grad or a young person making good salary, you can always rent a single family house and share it with a few teammates. I've been doing this for 2 years now and rent expenditure has been pretty low for me.

      The real problem though.. is even if you make $200k+ per year here, it's still difficult to buy a house in a decent school district.
      • I thought one of the perks making a good salary is NOT having roommates anymore.

        • Well, I'd rather save $2k - $3k every month and have housemates. That's $36k per year of extra cash for Christ's sake. You roll that into Tesla in the beginning of this year and now it's $150k (okay you'd need to be quite lucky to do this); or you roll that into BitCoins whenever there's a panic; or you just save it up and wait for the next market crash. But as you can see.. if you save and invest that, it becomes Porsche or even Ferrari money pretty quickly.

          ... and... that's still not enough for a good h
          • Re:Bad data (Score:4, Insightful)

            by lgw ( 121541 ) on Saturday October 19, 2013 @01:46AM (#45172805) Journal

            Save $2k/month? That's off. When I lived in Silly Valley this year my rent was less than $2k, and I had a nice modern 2-bedroom (and no roommate). Of course, that was with a bit of a commute - close in it would have been 2200 or so.

            It's amazing what people can find to spend their money on. Live cheap until you're independently wealthy - your freedom is by far the best gift to yourself.

          • by Kjella ( 173770 )

            Different strokes for different folks, I guess. I liked having my own room as a kid, now I have my own apartment and I guess eventually I will have my own house. I've had housemates in the past and with no offense to those I was living with I always wanted my own living space, even if it's a lot of arguably unnecessary cost. If you don't think it's a big deal, good for you. Heck some just like that lifestyle and only move out to live with someone as a couple, never having nor wanting a place all to themselv

      • Anyone have any idea how the schools can stay so bad, even with all the upper middle class engineers in the area? It stands to reason that they would not be AS good as the places where all the high dollar investors and execs would live, but 150k average for a few given neighborhoods should provide plenty of taxable income to maintain a decent, safe school district.
    • All this really says is that your company is in Silicon Valley where you need 100k a year to rent a decent apartment.

      Most of these companies have offices that aren't in Silicon Valley, or other really expensive areas.

    • I see you bought in to the "stock" thing. Why do you think start-ups offer such a thing? Because for the most part it is WORTHLESS in the long run. You will never benifit from those "stock" options. And yet you go on working for "real world" wages that are shitty because you're in love with the company. In a few years, you will walk away shaking your head at how you could have stayed there so long without real actual good compensation in the form you real actual money paid into your bank account.

      • by artor3 ( 1344997 )

        It's not just start-ups offering stock options, you know. My company's been around for several decades, and I receive about 20% of my compensation in the form of stock -- which I sell as soon as it vests, because only an idiot would keep so much money in a single company. I'm sure the AC is in the same boat, since he claims to work for one of the top 5 (Juniper, LinkedIn, Yahoo, Google, or Twitter).

    • This. I was making about $50k a year out of college in a medium sized midwestern city. Two years later I got an offer in DC for closer to $80k. Didn't take me long to realize I should have stayed at the old place as my rent for a nice two bedroom apartment was $850 a month vs $2500 a month for about the same thing in the DC area.

      • Re:Bad data (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Sir_Sri ( 199544 ) on Friday October 18, 2013 @10:47PM (#45171987)

        Don't rent buy.

        That's same with any big city/small town setup - you buy a house in the city (or suburbs of the city anyway), when it comes time to retire you sell your house and move to a small town half an hour a way, buy a comparable house for half the price, and the other half becomes most of your retirement nestegg.

        • you buy a house in the city (or suburbs of the city anyway), when it comes time to retire you sell your house and move to a small town half an hour a way, buy a comparable house for half the price, and the other half becomes most of your retirement nestegg.

          Houses depreciate over time, they don't get more valuable (unless you're putting lots of work and money into them. What *usually* becomes more valuable is the LAND your house is on.

          Where I looked, bare land was $200,000, with a house on the same sized lo

          • American houses are often built using wood frames with limited lifespan when compared to brick or stone - the stone built the farm house next door to me dates back to the 1650's (john Bunyan preached there back in the day)
            • Stone and brick performs terribly in earthquake country, still need ample routine maintenance (mortar deteriorates), and the framing is only a small part of the depreciation... Bringing old homes up to modern codes can be far more expensive than bulldozing and building new.

              The longevity of that building is just a fluke, not evidence of superiority. There will always be outliers, and I'm sure you can find wooden homes from the same era still around as well.

              • Well all low rise buildings don't perform that well in earthquakes
                • Well all low rise buildings don't perform that well in earthquakes

                  Non-masonry structures absolutely perform MUCH better with the twisting stresses caused by earthquakes. That goes triple for old, unreinforced masonry...

                  Wood-frame buildings can be significantly improved at trivial cost by just switching to HurriQuake nails.

    • by cyn1c77 ( 928549 )

      Base salary is only a fraction of the compensation. I work for one of the top 5 and the base plus stock per year for a fresh COLLEGE GRADUATE engineer is higher than the "average" salary listed for the company.

      Yeah, it's not "bad data." That's what the article said:

      "But it’s important to remember that base salaries don’t tell the whole story, says Scott Dobroski, Glassdoor’s community expert. “For example, while Facebook ranks ninth for average annual base salary on this report, Facebook employees receive larger bonuses and more stock options than some other tech companies on this list,” he said via email."

      "Something else to consider: Because Glassdoor only includes companies where

  • LinkedIn at 2? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    LinkedIn is obviously overpaying. No way is any of the code coming out of there as good as pretty much anybody below them on the list.

    • Re:LinkedIn at 2? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Joining Yet Again ( 2992179 ) on Friday October 18, 2013 @07:43PM (#45170951)

      Capitalism is about supply&demand, not effort&quality. The aim is to invest capital efficiently in response to demand instead of labouring.

      It's depressing that people understand so much about recent complex scientific developments, but don't have the simplest grasp of an economic system that's centuries old.

      • by sjames ( 1099 )

        If everyone did that nothing would actually get done and we'd all starve. The investors like to forget that.

        • by lgw ( 121541 )

          How so? We're much closer to everything basic to survival being done by robots than to most people figuring out how to invest! Sad commentary on human nature, really.

          • by sjames ( 1099 )

            But we're not there yet. If everyone TODAY put down their tools and became a full time investor, our lights would go out in short order. Food deliveries would stop and crops would die in the field.

            Sure, we may have robots able to do all of the necessary things one day, but that is not today.

            • by lgw ( 121541 )

              Sure, but the total dividends paid by all stocks are tiny by comparison. The entire value of all stocks is roughly equal to 1 year's GDP. Total wages are vastly higher than total dividends (or even total capital gains).

              I know some people believe "the rich" are hoarding sources of passive income so vast that it would give everyone a minimum survival income if only it were "fairly" distributed, but that's very far from true: for example, the total of all dividends is less than 3% of the total of all wages.

              • by sjames ( 1099 )

                A lot of it is more 'semi passive' That is, they have a 'job' but get paid fantastic amounts of money even though no human being could possibly actually be that productive.

                • by lgw ( 121541 )

                  Well, people mostly confuse "wealthy" and "high income", which is a good way to never become wealthy. It's easy to same the same of top-tier CEOs, pro sports stars, or actors "these guys can't possibly be worth millions a year", but you can't actually hire them for less.

                  • by sjames ( 1099 )

                    But they could easily be not hired at all. In the case of the CEOs, it's not hard to figure out how they get their demands met, they sit on each other's boards and make each other's salary decisions. Between the two, I'd have to say the sports stars put in a lot more work for their pay including being away from home for much or their season hopping from hotel to hotel.

                    To be truly wealthy, the two ways to get there are to inherit it (actually the most common) or have a high income so you can accumulate it.

        • I don't think they like to forget it - they just make sure that not too many people are in a position to invest much.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      That's because the real code is in the backend. The programs that do do talent detection and deliver investment advice based on employee migration patterns...

  • I don't know for everyone else, but I'm more surprised by another one: the fact that Walmart is really high up there. I know there's probably a gigantic system for handling all of their stores, shipments, etc. but I did not expect to see them so high up the list. Walmart would strike me as the sort of company to pay as little as possible.
    • by lw54 ( 73409 )

      Walmart is big data personified. Here are some old stats []

    • Walmart does pay as little as possible. They've probably just found that to get what they need, they have to offer that level of compensation. Walmart is reasonably good at that sort of thing, though I have observed key areas where they definitely need to increase salaries.
    • It's the difference between "average" and "median".

    • by Anonymous Coward

      I am in one of these positions at Walmart. This does not include the very large bonuses and stock. Also keep in mind that this is in AR where the cost of living is much lower than Silicon Valley. It would take a LOT more to get me to move to CA.

    • by lgw ( 121541 )

      Every company (well, most) pays as little as possible, just as every employee (well, most) wants as much as possible - far the quality they'll settle for.

      Walmart has the best logistics of any company in the world. That's simply not possible without being in the lead on "big data". And that means paying enough to get top quality engineers to live in AR.

  • Those salaries are really low for their locations.
  • by zrelativity ( 963547 ) on Friday October 18, 2013 @07:51PM (#45170999)
    Many of those companies are based in the Silicon Valley (particularly Santa Clara, North San Jose, Sunnyvale and Mountain View) where your cost of living is very high.

    If you were in Washington State or Texas (Dallas), your cost of living maybe only half of what it is Silicon Valley. When I was living in Dallas, I was paying less than half of what I now pay for an apartment in San Jose. There is state tax too. Juniper is relatively small.

    What was surprising to me was to see Walmart, but I don't know their Software Engineering group size or location.

    • Wal-Mart does not skimp on IT/security infrastructure and equipment upgrades. I have been doing data, phone, CCTV and alarm service work in Wal-Mart/Sam's for years. They are not afraid to spend money on tech.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Physical IT infrastructure and software for Stores and Clubs are ran out of ISD in good 'old Bentonville. Old, stodgy, but stable. ~4000 associates + untold vendors. Arkansas payscales - of course you can find a very nice place to live in BV for ~1100 - 2k sq feet, 2 car garage, large yard, etc. Weather sucks. Out Loud. as an eCommerce retailer is ran out of San Bruno, CA and much more startup-y and silicon valley-y. Closer to ~1500 associates + not quite so many vendors. Close to San Francisco s

    • by lgw ( 121541 )

      My apartment in Washington State costs 10% more than my apartment in Silicon Valley did. It's all about your commute and what you're close to.

      The tax difference is quite significant though - CA is 7%, but that's 7% of gross, so more like 10% of what would have been your take home in WA or TX. Plus here in WA I can legally get plastic bags in the grocery store if I like - so there's that (I just didn't realize how intrusive CA laws were into my daily life until I left - it was like a weight lifted).


  • by sgt_doom ( 655561 ) on Friday October 18, 2013 @08:14PM (#45171121)
    has anyone ever read Goralski's book on networking (he's a top engineer there)? []
  • "engineers" (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    programing is not engineering.

  • How long is the work week 60-80+ and is face book building housing to push that to 100+ or do they want the H1b1 on site 24/7

  • by TheRealHocusLocus ( 2319802 ) on Friday October 18, 2013 @10:02PM (#45171721)

    Greetz to my buds at Juniper's Special NSA Piggyback Slurp Packet Sniffle Fiber Fruitcake Utah Datacenter Cluster Zap Lightning Products Division.

    Glad to see someone is living the American dream.

    Just joking. I know full well that routers do not listen to people, people listen to people.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Glassdoor reports that one Senior Software Engineer at Google made a $300,000 stock bonus and had total compensation of over $400,000. Juniper doesn't have anything like that. I think Google has more variance in pay possibly. From what I understand Facebook is the same. The top engineers are rewarded VERY well.

  • Some Caveats (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    As they note: "Because Glassdoor only includes companies where at least 50 engineers have submitted salaries, there are some high-paying companies that didn’t make the list. Netflix, for example, often pays engineers far more than other companies" which, working at Netflix, I can confirm -- software engineers get paid substantially more than at Juniper at Netflix and as for "some startups that are paying software developers close to the same salaries as management" -- Ha. I manage a software develop

  • by zenyu ( 248067 ) on Saturday October 19, 2013 @08:23AM (#45173729)

    I don't work in finance, but I'm surprized not a single hedge fund made the list. A big part of their compensation is in the bonus, but still you can't live on a base of $130k in Manhattan, kindergarten costs $38k per year per kid, not to mention a place to live, etc.

    Is it just that you need to have 10,000+ employees before 50 of them post their salary on glassdoor?

    Do hedge funds actively discourage their employees from posting?

  • If Juniper only allows those with a a Peng/Ceng to call them selves Engineers as opposed to other companies that take fresh grads and call the engineers that woudl explain it

    I have worked for major telcos where the term "engineer " was almost never used for professional job grades as that was what the Linemen where called :-)
  • Numbers are mostly meaningless without knowing locale. Most of the top companies are concentrated in northern California, where not only is the cost of living high but there's also lots of competition for talent. What does Google pay its engineers working in, say, Pittsburgh or Austin?
  • Because Glassdoor only includes companies where at least 50 engineers have submitted salaries

    It's my understanding that Juniper does pay pretty well overall. However, I doubt it's pay advantage is so huge - I'm guessing that there's a different sort of person submitting salaries at Juniper (maybe bored long timers ;)) vs somewhere like Facebook...

User hostile.