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Some engineers are being paid between $250k and $1m, says salary survey

San Francisco is highest salaried city for tech pros (if you can afford to live there)

If a new year means a new job, it might be worth taking a peek at the 2022 salary survey, which reveals that principal engineers are getting up to $1 million, and even entry-level engineers can expect more than $250,000 in the highest paying tech firms.

Based on more than 150,000 salary submissions, the research shows entry-level engineers with up to two years of experience can expect a salary of around $274,000 from New York's Two Sigma, which specializes in applying data science to the financial services industry. Second place went to Stripe, the online payment specialist, which offered around $266,000, and in third was $238,000 from Cruise, the self-driving car company.

On the standard engineering grade, Databricks offers the highest salary of around $443,000, while Cruise and online gaming platform Roblox came in second and third, respectively with $361,000 and $354,000. At the other end of the scale, a principal engineer might expect $1,044,000 at the highest payer, social media giant Facebook. In this tier of engineers, Stripe came in second with $900,000, while Airbnb was third with $796,000.

Some companies did not get enough reports to be statistically valid so were not included in the salary survey, said by way of a disclaimer. It also noted the changing pattern in demand for skills through the year and aligned variation in salary.

"As quickly as the market heated up at the beginning of [2022], it has come to a stark cooldown by the end," said in its commentary. "Layoffs and hiring freezes punctuate the fourth quarter closing out the year with growing uncertainty for 2023. Despite this, compensation has still generally increased relative to last year at the topmost companies and levels."

The salary research firm also noted geographic variations in pay for 2022. In the US, the top three paying cities were the San Francisco Bay Area ($234,000), Greater Seattle Area ($213,000) and New York City ($187,000). In Europe, the highest paying city was Zurich ($178,000), followed by London ($116,000) and Dublin ($112,000).

Despite Big Tech lay-offs and overall economic headwinds throughout the globe, Gartner has predicted that global IT spending will hit $4.6 trillion in 2023, up 5.1 percent from 2022. ®

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