Advise needed for high growth rate career trajectory

LiveRamp / Eng matcha123
May 11 11 Comments

Hey there folks!

I’m a master’s grad from a top 10 US university and started my career as a software engineer (SDE2) early this year in SF. I’m looking for advise on probable timelines for a fast paced career growth. Eventually I can see myself diving into engineering management path more than an Individual contributor path.

1. How much bump in TC can I expect working at the same company year on year if I’m one of the top performers, and when is the right time to talk about this with my manager?

2. I would like to know after how many years should I target being a squad lead, and what sort of TC can I expect at that stage?

3. When you do jump from one SDE level to another, how much raise in comp and stocks can one expect?

4. When is the perfect time to switch companies?

My current TC including unvested stocks ~180k

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TOP 11 Comments
  • Google snatch
    Having gone through this I can tell you this - try and be a better engineer in the beginning stages of your career. Don't worry too much about TC. Go to places and work on things that will help you become better. Rest of the things like TC, management position will follow.
    May 11 2
    • Microsoft RicketyRix
      Bullocks.
      OP, always chase TC. Specially early in your career.
      May 11
    • LiveRamp / Eng matcha123
      OP
      @snatch Thanks! Can you define “beginning stages”? Can you also try and answer some of the points from my post above?
      May 12
  • Groupon OP19
    As a mgr lemme tell you this, the key to fast ramp up is to clearly set the expectation, each company has a set of guidelines for each level . In order to prepare a promo PKG for you, I need to make sure you check all the requirements for you current level and you demonstrated some ability at the next level. This is when I will confidently file a promo package for you and you will most likely be able to get to your next level . So if you want grow fast, always check with your mgr to make sure you are working on the right thing that helps your career move. Once you checked everything there is no reason for the mgr to not promo you.
    May 14 2
    • LiveRamp / Eng matcha123
      OP
      Thanks, this helps a lot!

      Can you elaborate on the %age bump in Salary and stocks when you are promoted from say sde2 to sde3?
      May 15
    • Groupon OP19
      Varies by company. But for a promo I'd expect ~13% base bump from SDE 2 to 3. Company has guidelines on this so it depends. If it is happening at year end it is usually combined with merit. You may get additional stock, but it's definitely not usually comparable to if you were hired as SDE3. Unless you are rockstar the easiest would be getting a market offer to ask your current company to match, otherwise it is really hard for your mgr to justify you comp for special consideration with HR. Just remember a good manager want you to earn competitive comp, but unfortunately manager doesn't have a lot of control over the company's guideline. So treat your manager as your ally, if you feel your comp is below market bring it up to your manager early, don't wait till review result is released to then discuss comp with your manager, that's too late :)
      May 15
  • Snapchat bFCN68
    If you want to grow fast then learn what gets you promo and what doesn't. Optimize for it, learn to make others do the work for you, and suck up to your manager. Your co-workers will hate you but you'll grow your levels and TC f*ing fast.
    May 12 0
  • Amazon
    seattle'd

    Amazon

    PRE
    Amazon, Salesforce, Google, Microsoft, Apple
    seattle'dmore
    @OP How is the engineering growth at live ramp?
    May 11 1
    • LiveRamp / Eng matcha123
      OP
      From what I’ve heard, growth is pretty quick given you are up for the challenge. Stock is trending as well, so that’s a good sign.
      I’m more inclined towards learning from other experienced devs about their career trajectory and any tips they might have with regards to it.
      May 11
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  • New / Eng Endlessly
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