News Updates

Small tech, big pay

August 7, 2023
Welcome to Monday, Insiders. If you’re commuting today, you’re not alone. The remote-work revolution seems to be dead: Zoom just told employees to return to the office.


Another thing that’s on its way out is the eye-popping paychecks from Big Tech companies. That’s today’s big story.


What’s on deck: 

  • Markets: A top-1% fund manager highlights a “once in a generation” opportunity.
  • Tech: Salesforce’s chief people officer, Brent Hyder, is leaving.
  • Business: New Zealand has figured out a simple way to bring down home prices.
But first, size matters.
If this was forwarded to you, sign up here.

Small tech, big pay

Sesame / Getty Images


If you’re a young tech worker looking for a big payday, it’s best to think small.

Tech giants like Meta, Google, and Apple — traditionally considered a safe bet for young engineers looking for high-paying jobs — have tightened their purse strings. Instead, smaller companies are now more willing to shell out big bucks for junior engineers, Insider’s Kali Hays writes.

Netflix was the only member of FAANG to be among the best-paying tech companies for engineers with less than 15 years of experience, according to a report from on pay in tech for the first half of the year.

The median compensation for an engineer with two or more years of experience at the streaming giant was $312,500, while the median pay for someone with five or more years of experience was $550,000.

Meta’s only appearance on the list was for principal engineers (those with more than 15 years of experience) with a median comp of nearly $1 million.

Other tech giants like Google, Apple, and Microsoft didn’t appear anywhere on the report, despite notching spots the previous two years.

Belt tightening among tech giants is somewhat to be expected. The knock-on effects of a brutal 2022 for the industry haven’t just been layoffs. Tech workers have begun to wonder whether the days of the $500,000-plus salaries are over.

Amazon already signaled a change in how it approaches compensation earlier this year when a leaked memo indicated plans to reduce employee stock awards. And Meta dropped bonus pay for lower-performing employees in a nod to Mark Zuckerberg’s “year of efficiency” mantra.

So who is willing to shell out for young tech workers? In short: smaller, younger companies.

Databricks, a 10-year-old company with about 5,000 employees that analyzes and manages data, ranked top for median pay for entry-level engineers ($274,200), engineers ($385,850), and senior engineers ($584,250).

Stripe also ranked high in all three categories, while its fellow fintech Plaid got the nod for its pay for engineers and senior engineers.


3 things in markets

Before the opening bell: US stock futures are up early Monday following Friday’s jobs report
REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
  1. A fund manager is highlighting a “once in a generation” opportunity. Matthew Fine, a top-1% fund manager, put a spotlight on small-cap funds, pointing to their startling valuation gap with large-cap companies. He shared 10 stocks to buy now — and why.
  2. Some Wall Street analysts are bracing for a stock sell-off. Though stocks have outperformed expectations this year, analysts from JPMorgan, Wells Fargo, and more are bracing for a sell-off as the market approaches new highs.
  3. S&P 500 could triple to 14,000 by 2034. An RBC technical strategist said the stock market’s surge could be part of a larger secular bull-market cycle.
3 things in tech
Salesforce Chief People Officer Brent Hyder. Salesforce
  1. Leaked Slack messages: Salesforce’s chief people officer is leaving. Brent Hyder said in his message that it was a difficult decision for him. In June, his remarks during a Pride event offended some employees.
  2. Elon Musk said he would cover the legal fees of anyone who lost their job in relation to content they posted or liked on X. Writing in a post on the site, Musk said there was “no limit.”
  3. Tesla hack unlocked. Tesla offers many in-car purchases for improved features and upgrades. But researchers said they’d found a way to circumvent the payments, effectively hotwiring the vehicle.
3 things in business
Tyler Le/Insider
  1. New Zealand’s genius housing solution. The island country had a problem: booming population growth, skyrocketing rents, and simply not enough homes. Sound familiar? So it undertook major housing reform — allowing duplexes, triplexes, and townhomes on formerly single-home lots. The changes helped boost housing supply and slow soaring housing costs — America should take some notes.
  2. New side hustle: renting out Starlink satellite dishes. Some people have started renting out SpaceX’s satellite internet kits on Facebook Marketplace for $25 to $35 a day. One startup CEO claims he saw someone making $5,000 a month renting these devices.
  3. The luckiest Gen Zers. Class-of-2019 Gen Zers won the pandemic economic recovery. They never had to do remote school. Many got jobs before the pandemic hit. And their newly graduated status qualified many of them for unprecedented government assistance.

Walmart, McDonald’s, & more

  • Fisker’s new electric pickup. It’s one of the coolest Tesla Cybertruck and Ford F-150 Lightning rivals yet.
  • Mountains are collapsing. Scientists warn that climate change could make more mountains crumble.
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus at McDonald’s in Japan. Our reviewer evaluated items like the Teriyaki-Chicken Filet-O and the Samurai Mac — and found all three meals beat what’s offered in the US.
  • The perks of dome-shaped houses. Homeowners said they’re built to withstand extreme weather and are pretty energy-efficient.
  • Walmart employees reveal seven slang terms they use at work. Action alley, for example, is what employees call the wide store aisles that separate departments.
  • The 10 fastest-shrinking US cities and towns. Jackson, St. Louis, and New Orleans are among the country’s leaders for declining populations.

Baseball, television, & more

  • Houston Astros in the White House. President Joe Biden and the first lady, Jill Biden, are hosting the Texas baseball team to celebrate its 2022 World Series victory.
  • The Television Critics Association Awards will be announced. Nominees include “Abbott Elementary,” “The Bear,” “The Last of Us,” and “The White Lotus.”
  • Sentencing of the former Minneapolis police officer Tou Thao over the murder of George Floyd. He was convicted of aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.

Pink temple

Photos show hidden details of the famous pink Buddhist temple in Thailand. The cylindrical, 17-story temple has a dragon sculpture wrapped around its exterior.
The Insider Today team: Dan DeFrancesco, senior editor and anchor, in New York City. Diamond Naga Siu, senior reporter, in San Diego. Hallam Bullock, editor, in London. Lisa Ryan, executive editor, in New York City.
Get in touch:

Categories: News Updates

Leave a Reply