Google L4 lowballs? Microsoft and Facebook better with levels?

Tanium / Eng
sANx51

Tanium Eng

PRE
Amazon
sANx51more
Oct 27 41 Comments

Hi all!

I have no plans on moving on from my current company (Engaging work, good WLB, remote, excellent comp) but Google reaches out at least once a year to me. I usually tell them I’m not looking, but humor a conversation every now and then.

Despite trying to butter me up in the emails about “very experienced engineers” and “unique team opportunities” they always try to rope me into to a company wide generic L4 loop.

I know what the pay bands are (thanks levels.fyi!) and know it wouldn’t be worth the time and effort unless it was an L6 interview. They claim that level is based on performance, but I am very skeptical they ever place anyone two levels above the initial slotting. They say can match my comp, but that would be the top of the L5 band, and not really worth the downsides (big company politica, no remote, I already have a FANG on my resume, top of band means little room for promos)

It also seems L6 is not generally offered unless you have 10 plus YOE, and I am only at 7.

Given all that context I have a few questions: Would they really consider me for L6 if I did well in the loop? Should I basically ignore Google recruiting emails for now until I get to 10 YOE? Is there a way to say I am only interested in L6 without coming across as a jerk?

I also got denied in a M$ loop for a principal positon due to lack of YOE (still confused why they interviewed me if that is the case... they said I nailed the technical questions)

Curious if FB/Netflix are any better about beating current level/comp.

Again, love where I am, but I don’t want to needlessly stick my head in the ground, but also want to spend less time hearing lowballs. It’s also just good to know your options, even if you might not use them! I feel very fortunate to have this issue! The only issue with my current company is how flat we are makes it tough to gain more comp. While I am pleased now, it would be unideal to not make any gains for several years.

TC: 400k

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TOP 41 Comments
  • Google turbocuck
    Just flat out say you’re not willing to consider a non L6 loop. That doesn’t make you out to be a jerk.
    Oct 27 1
    • Tanium / Eng
      sANx51

      Tanium Eng

      PRE
      Amazon
      sANx51more
      OP
      Simple enough. Glad to hear that won’t be interrupted the wrong way!
      Oct 27
  • Google nxtintview
    In a startup even with 10 yoe you can only interview for 5. Never 6
    Oct 27 13
    • Google / Eng manoi3
      Going though the motions at Google is way different than average company lol
      Oct 28
    • Google nxtintview
      Hey promosux what’s your current level at G?
      Oct 28
    • Google / Eng L3@8yoe
      L3. Just been here for 1.5 years. Promosux man. Im frickin 30 years old with wife and kids and im competing against horny college grads
      Oct 28
    • Google nxtintview
      Do you are L3 with 8yoe?
      Oct 28
    • Google nxtintview
      What’s your tc?
      Oct 28
  • Google / Eng Cuekhkws
    You can do Google interview and show them that you are L6 candidate. I don’t think there is a separate L6 loop. You will be calibrated based on interview performance.
    Oct 27 4
    • Google turbocuck
      You need to be placed into a loop with interviewers of the right level and questions calibrated though.
      Oct 27
    • Dell LUHV04
      So if your initial calibrated level is 5, they call you for L5 loop, and you do exceedingly well, there is no way to get L6 ?
      Oct 28
    • Google turbocuck
      Almost impossible for L6, it’s a different loop with behavioral rounds.
      Oct 28
    • Dell LUHV04
      Got it
      So now that my interviews are complete
      If feedback is good , and I ask for l6 , I will be called again for re-interview

      Now if this re-interview doesn’t go well , I loose the original L5 offer too ?
      Oct 28
  • Qualcomm / Eng sashimi30
    I had rejected a Google offer because they lowballed the shit out of it... so much so that Amazon offered me the same money in a much cheaper locale. Seems like Google only makes sense to join if you're a new grad.
    Oct 27 2
    • Qualcomm m0N051
      Can you please share the offer details and yoe? I am dealing with same situation.
      Oct 28
    • Qualcomm / Eng sashimi30
      At the time I was about 4.5 YOE and M.S. IIRC it was L4 and in the 240k-250k range, which felt low.
      Oct 28
  • Google nxtintview
    This guy looks like a L4 candidate
    Oct 27 0
  • Google aiuy
    Almost impossible for L6. Does your 400k TC include paper money? If it does, don’t expect a match.
    Oct 27 5
    • Tanium / Eng
      sANx51

      Tanium Eng

      PRE
      Amazon
      sANx51more
      OP
      Over half is.
      Oct 27
    • Google aiuy
      Then, your TC is like a L4.
      Oct 27
    • Tanium / Eng
      sANx51

      Tanium Eng

      PRE
      Amazon
      sANx51more
      OP
      Isn’t the average cash comp for L4 around 180k, with 80k stock? Mine is 260k paper 140k RSU, which seems more like L5.

      L5 would be my personal assessment of what would be a fair and equivalent match, but that’s not exciting enough to make a move, for me at least.
      Oct 27
    • Google aiuy
      Value of paper is hard to say. If you’re happy with current situation, no need to consider other opportunities at all. Be realistic, no way for L6 and just borderline of L5 for your case.
      Oct 27
    • Tanium / Eng
      sANx51

      Tanium Eng

      PRE
      Amazon
      sANx51more
      OP
      That’s honestly what I figured. I’m happy with where I am, and it sounds like L6 is quite unlikely. I’m content with being maxed out for now. Thank you for the candid feedback though!
      Oct 27
  • New Tappa12
    L6 involves lots of design rounds. I would consider L5 loop and after you get feedback from the recruiter ask if you can do more L6 design rounds to get more signal and have that submitted to HC. Although during the behavioral round you should have L6 qualities since that is also in L5 loop.
    Oct 27 4
    • Tanium / Eng
      sANx51

      Tanium Eng

      PRE
      Amazon
      sANx51more
      OP
      Does Google keep track of your progress between interviews? I also thought they were isolated incidents.
      Oct 27
    • New Tappa12
      The recruiter aggregates this for HC so they have an idea of what level you can pass
      Oct 27
    • Dell LUHV04
      If you fail extended L6 rounds , you loose L5 offer ?
      Oct 28
    • New Tappa12
      If you perform other design as L4 they will probably down level you.
      Oct 28
  • Tanium / Eng
    sANx51

    Tanium Eng

    PRE
    Amazon
    sANx51more
    OP
    Thanks for the info everyone! I’ll mention I’m only interested in L6, but not going to hold my breath on that one 🤣
    Oct 27 0
  • New / Mktg
    SrZeroCool

    New Mktg

    PRE
    IBM
    SrZeroCoolmore
    Tell them you’re not interested in anything less than L6 but they need to see what you’re made of. Hard to negotiate when they don’t know you
    Oct 27 0
  • Tanium / Eng
    sANx51

    Tanium Eng

    PRE
    Amazon
    sANx51more
    OP
    Don’t get me wrong; it’s not a matter of thinking I deserve nor do I think I’m entitled to 6. (Again, personally I’d slot myself as 5) it’s just a matter of what would make me feel interested in a move.

    A house someone grew up in could be worth 300k, but they still might not sell it for 320k if they really enjoy their house. However, that doesn’t mean they don’t have their price (most people do) and would sell it for 600k.

    I doubted from the beginning I was L6 capable, but I’m not interested in 5 fair or not. This thread helped me determine that, and gave me a rough idea of when I could start seriously discussing an L6 role in the distant future, should development here stagnant.

    Just doing my hw!
    Oct 28 0
  • Google nxtintview
    Not sure why you deserve 6 if u just have a few yoe
    Oct 28 0
  • Tanium / Eng
    sANx51

    Tanium Eng

    PRE
    Amazon
    sANx51more
    OP
    The recruiter did mention they have full stack generalist L6 positions (wasn’t offered to interview for them though 😂)
    Oct 28 0

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