9 Top-Paying Tech Firms: Glassdoor - InformationWeek

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4/28/2015
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9 Top-Paying Tech Firms: Glassdoor

The tech sector dominates Glassdoor's list of the top 15 highest-paying companies in the US.
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(Image: glassdoor.com)

(Image: glassdoor.com)

Tech companies make up nine of the 15 highest-paying companies, based on median salaries ranked by career website Glassdoor.com in a recent study. Dr. Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor chief economist, doesn't see that changing anytime soon.

That's great news for IT pros working in the tech sector. Dr. Chamberlain sees great salaries in your future, and now you know exactly where to go for the best pay in the business.

Glassdoor examined more than 3 million pay reports from its more than 30 million members across all types of job functions, age, experience, gender, and education levels, to build a comprehensive view of the top-paying companies. Information from those companies that have at least 30 pay reports submitted with Glassdoor was used to create the list of the best-paying firms.

The study looks at more than base salaries, including extras such as bonuses, stock options, and commissions. Tech companies and consulting firms dominated the list (but if Glassdoor used mean salaries, instead of median salaries, the list would include almost nothing but financial firms, which are known for high salaries earned by a small number of workers).

Why so many tech companies? Two reasons. First, there's the lack of workers with good tech chops. "You see tech on the lists for a totally different reason than these other companies," Dr. Chamberlain said in a phone interview, "The salaries are growing so fast because of the scarcity of the skills these people need. There is a bidding war going on because all of these tech companies need developers and data analysts. These people are very scarce. All the assets in these firms (technology companies) are intellectual. They are in the heads of their people."

Dr. Chamberlain doesn't expect that to change. This is the first year of the study, so he can't make statements on trends. Yet, he expects tech companies will continue to dominate the list for years because of economic conditions. "Labor markets take a long time to adjust," Dr. Chamberlain said. "Everyone wants a mobile app. Everyone wants to do something online. Rapid changes in consumer demand have created this need."

"There are only two ways to alleviate this," Chamerberlain added. "You can train more workers in the US, but that takes time for colleges to adapt, and people to go to the programs, and for people to mature and take those roles. Or you can change H-1B visa rules." Neither is likely to happen anytime soon.

The other reason tech companies dominate the list is their structure. Tech companies tend to have fewer layers of support staff and therefore fewer low-paying jobs. Dr. Chamberlain pointed out that a more traditional company, like GE, might have more truck drivers, administrative workers, HR workers, warehouse workers, and assembly line workers, and other jobs that tend to pay less than tech jobs. "You don't see truck drivers at Netflix, for sure."

You will also see that some of the biggest tech giants (with one exception) don't make the list. Dr. Chamberlain explained that startups are almost all engineers and founders. As companies grow, they add layers of support. "That flattens the salary distribution," Dr. Chamberlain said. There are also other ways for large, reputable companies to attract workers. "Prestige and possibly more job security," are other ways to attract people besides salary, according to Dr. Chamberlain. "There's potentially less risk taking a job at Microsoft, for example."

If your company isn't on the list, that doesn't automatically mean you're getting a raw deal. This list counts all jobs of any kind, and you may find your salary as an IT pro is competitive with your peers at organizations with higher median salaries. And, you might have a better quality of job or work/life balance or a more interesting position.

Still, this serves as a good benchmark for some of the higher-paying companies out there. And it helps you identify the type of company to look for if you want a higher paying job. Look for mature startups with low support costs and a business model that relies on top engineering talent.

On the following pages, you'll find out what the median pay is at the nine tech companies that made it onto Glassdoor's list of Top 15 best-paying companies. After you've polished up your resume, tell us what you think in the comment section below.

David has been writing on business and technology for over 10 years and was most recently Managing Editor at Enterpriseefficiency.com. Before that he was an Assistant Editor at MIT Sloan Management Review, where he covered a wide range of business topics including IT, ... View Full Bio

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Ashu001
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Ashu001,
User Rank: Ninja
5/3/2015 | 12:34:14 PM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
Dave,

You raise excellent points here(regarding the Changing nature of IT Business Globally).

I really liked what you had to say here especially-

If you hire a consultant (or a contractor from a firm) they have to pay top dollar to the talent and then they have to charge you OVER top talent so they make a profit. This worked fine when top talent was available for cheap from all over the world. As salaries rise in many developing countries, it isn't working. So now, you hire the top talent directly and save the premium.

Just thought I would share with you something about the industry that I read recently.

The First was a story about TCS[The World's Largest IT Outsourcer today-They employ over 300,000 people Globally].

For the first time in Decades,they dissapointed for Profits as well as Revenue.

When the CEO was questioned aggressively about why this happened he said something very,very interesting-"The Days of High-Double Digit Growth for the IT Outsourcing Industry are over Globally."

Consumers have become more demanding especially with respect to Cost as well as Product offerings today.If you can't deliver something which is'nt available easily in-house they are just not interested in talking to You.

The other was from Wipro[India's 4th Largest IT Outsourcer];they have been dissapointing on results for a while now and they have said its time to implement a "Factory Model of Automation".

The Days of Simply adding more Headcount which translates to Rising Revenue are over.

In fact they plan to cut Workforce employed by close to 30% in-house over the next three years.

These two interviews clearly tell you that things are changing very quickly and rapidly in this space(especially in their desperation to stay relevant to clients key concerns/needs).

Innovate or Die is definitely the mantra here.

 

 
SachinEE
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SachinEE,
User Rank: Ninja
4/30/2015 | 10:10:54 AM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
I am surprised to see NetFlix paying more than Good Technology. I also never thought Good Technology and other companies would pay more than Google. However I think money is not everything. Amenities and workplace ethics put Google at the top of most desirable places to work.
SachinEE
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SachinEE,
User Rank: Ninja
4/30/2015 | 10:04:22 AM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
@impactnow: I think talent is overlooked because interviewers only take those who show what they can do. They don't take those people who don't perform well at an interview, although they might have more talent than the ones recruited. Interviewers should know how to bring out the best in freshers/employees.
SachinEE
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SachinEE,
User Rank: Ninja
4/30/2015 | 10:01:23 AM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
@kstaron: When you are fresh out of any technical school the hardest thing you have to go through is making the company recruiter believe you know your field. Now most freshers do not have that luxury of knowing what to do in their field because they lack training. Not classroom training but hands on work, however internships although extremely popular, still cannot assure you have enough training for that job.
kstaron
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kstaron,
User Rank: Ninja
4/29/2015 | 5:57:12 PM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
I agree that companies need to start taking some responsibility for training up some people if the skills are scarce.  But the fact is they haven't yet, so no matter if you are male or female or 20 or 50, you need to take the time to learn what you need to and find a way to show them that you can do the work they need you to do. It doesn't have to be  classroom education either. If you can knock their socks off with a program you learned how to code from a book it can show you are dedicated and have the potential to do what they need you to.
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
4/29/2015 | 1:26:12 PM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
@ashu001- Well, I'm sure it depends on your business. But I think the issue is that the work is the work. You have x dollars to get done y work. Even if you take the cynical view that the CIO is out to get the biggest bonus possible, he or she does that by doing the most with the least.

One of the common discussions going on here is what is the right mix of insourced and outsourced work. Several people say that a year or two ago they thought the right ratio was 30% in and 70% out. Now, they think the pendulum is swinging back toward in. Most mentioned to costs to outsourcing-- lack of innovation and the premium they were paying for talent.

If you hire a consultant (or a contractor from a firm) they have to pay top dollar to the talent and then they have to charge you OVER top talent so they make a profit. This worked fine when top talent was available for cheap from all over the world. As salaries rise in many developing countries, it isn't working. So now, you hire the top talent directly and save the premium.

Of course, certain things should just be shunted to the cloud or done via a service because they aren't core to your business or you don't have capabilities or whatever. 

But a lot of this is about global economics of IT changing.
Ashu001
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Ashu001,
User Rank: Ninja
4/29/2015 | 1:14:32 PM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
AskSqn,

Actually this works both ways.

Lot of companies really do struggle to find the right kind of Staff who can fit right in and deliver ASAP.

That's why they gravitate towards the H-1B model so easily.

But you also see another aspect to this whole debate,why are'nt companies spending more on Training/re-training existing staff in new skills.The reason for that is usually they are either massively pressed for Time or resources.

Both aspects need to be looked at more closely today.

As for the whole Telecommuting thing-Most Companies are moving away from the whole Telecommuting model because its either not possible to deliver adequate quality or assess employees effectively enough.

Working from home-One day a week is fine but anything more usually gets difficult to manage and monitor for Managers.

 
Ashu001
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Ashu001,
User Rank: Ninja
4/29/2015 | 1:07:30 PM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
David,

Thank you so much for sharing your observations with us here at the IW community!

I must say that none of your observations were very surprising to me personally.

Just had a query-By bringing more folks onto the Company Balance-Sheet won't this go against the Asset-Lite model of most Enterprises today?[You know how they are firing more and more folks and looking to be responsible for as few employees as possible on a Day to Day basis-Everyone's on Contract Basis-Hire and Fire Happily as you feel like].

Not able to generate High Profits to pay yourself a Gigantic Bonus?

Lets fire more folks then!

Even if its these guys who do the actual work.

Regards

Ashish.
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
4/29/2015 | 12:49:42 PM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift
@impactnow- It looks like people are trying a lot of different things. Some folks I've been talking to are looking to automate more. Others are looking at insourcing as a way of saving money. It seems counterintuitive, but several CIOs here at IWeek cCnference have been noting that they are paying a premium for consultants or contractors because those folks need to make a profit, too. Insourcing avoids the middleman and allows you to pay the employee directly (meansingyou can compete on salary). I have to say others have sort of given up. They see the problem. they just don't know what to do about it.

I think we're seeing a lot of flux in strategy and the movement of people (cloud is a major driver of this). Stay tuned. I think we'll be writing a lot about this in the coming year or two. I'll be attending a session on the talnet gap later today at Interop, too. So maybe I'll have a couple of answers for you.
impactnow
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impactnow,
User Rank: Author
4/29/2015 | 12:36:17 PM
Re: American tech needs a paradigm shift

 

Dave very interesting list it really provides a landscape of where the tech industry is and where it's going. I agree that there is a lack of talent but there is also overlooked talent. What strategies did you find companies looking at to get good talent? Are they looking at telecommuting/remote offices, opening offices in talent heavy regions outside of NY and SF?

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