Google RS vs. Hedgefund PM

Microsoft / R&D unifie
Dec 24, 2018 20 Comments

I'm looking at two different career moves (coming from MSR):

1. PM at a top-10 Hedgefund TC 600K guaranteed year 1, and variable afterwards (350-2M+ depending on my portfolio performance)

2. L6 RS at Google with 470K TC guaranteed annually

Leaning towards the hedge fund because I feel like I could hop to FAANG in a year if I hate finance and gives me a shot at earnings 1M+ while I'm in my early thirties

More details: did my PhD in optimization, took some courses in econometrics and financial modeling, and have research experience in tech but coming into finance for the first time professionally

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TOP 20 Comments
  • Amazon / Eng jNeo42
    A Microsoft SDE (? you chose “Eng”) to hedge fund Portfolio Manager @ 600K? I’m not buying it. I worked as a software engineer in hedge funds for a dozen years, and looking to return. You do not sail into a first-time Portfolio Manager position. Even if you got a PhD while at Microsoft and you’re starting as a quantitative analyst — a “top ten” fund is not going to do this. Talk about some hunger games.
    Dec 24, 2018 4
    • Facebook / Eng .m.
      +1. Please share how you made the move lol
      Dec 24, 2018
    • Roku / Eng UXdesign
      OP is probably a PhD and currently a researcher at MSR, not SDE.
      Dec 24, 2018
    • Facebook / Eng .m.
      Makes sense, I get a PhD
      Dec 24, 2018
    • Microsoft / R&D unifie
      OP
      I'm a researcher in MSR with a PhD as the previous commenter suggested. I joined blind before the R&D job category existed and just fixed it now (before there were many less job categories).
      Dec 24, 2018
  • Roku / Eng UXdesign
    OP, no one can tell you what to do without a lot more details. I was in a similar situation a few months ago, and I know it’s a difficult decision knowing all the facts.
    On Blind, people are ignorant about Finance, and will definitely give you unhelpful advice. Having first hand experience in both hedge funds and tech, even I cannot give you good advice until I know what kind of work you like, what are the roles like, what the culture at Hedge fund is like, etc. There is a big spectrum of Hedge funds. Some of them are not worth going. Given that someone has given you a PM role at a Hedge fund with no experience in Finance makes me think that they would fire you as easily, and you would be under a lot of pressure to perform well.
    Dec 24, 2018 2
    • Microsoft / R&D unifie
      OP
      I do see a lot of pressure to perform. My PhD was in optimization and I think they expect me to contribute within 3 months. What was your ultimate decision?
      Dec 24, 2018
    • Roku / Eng UXdesign
      I ultimately joined Roku. But the reasons are specific to me. Don’t think they apply to you. As I said, there are a lot of factors that vary according to the circumstance.
      Dec 24, 2018
  • Microsoft FEBx80
    Which hedge fund: Two Sigma ?
    Dec 24, 2018 0
  • Facebook / Eng Dbje64hhx
    Hedge fund. You can always come to goog
    Dec 24, 2018 0
  • Google L7@AWS
    I don't know about hedge funds, but if it's really pressure to perform within 3 months and G offer is good for a year, you don't have much to lose by taking the PM position
    Dec 24, 2018 1
    • Microsoft / R&D unifie
      OP
      I forgot that Google's offer is good for a year thanks for the reminder.
      Dec 24, 2018
  • Roku / Eng UXdesign
    Btw OP, if the Hedge fund is WorldQuant, I would never go there. You are thrown to the wolves and they fire you in an year if you lose their money. They offered me a PM interview when I had Masters+1 YoE in tech. LOL.
    Dec 24, 2018 0
  • Citadel 350
    Which hedge fund? Depending on that your experience can be vastly different.
    If it was Citadel, if you don’t perform really well within the first 3 months, you are fired. The bar is high.
    If it was D.E.Shaw, you could take some time ramping up and only get fired if you were too bad.

    Google’s offer is valid for an year. So u can take a calculated risk with the Hedge fund and go to Google if you don’t like it. But be prepared for a 8-7 job atleast till you can prove yourself.
    Dec 24, 2018 1
    • Microsoft / R&D unifie
      OP
      Thanks so much for the info super helpful
      Dec 24, 2018
  • This comment was deleted by original commenter.

    • Microsoft / R&D unifie
      OP
      Thanks that does make sense, at this point I'm weighing high risk high profit vs a pretty stable option at RMI/AI.
      Dec 24, 2018
  • Amazon hedgeornot
    OP, What did you finally decide?
    Feb 20 0
  • Capital One EXwk33
    Agreed. It totally depends on the situation. In general I think the most important thing is where you think you will like the team the most. I personally didnt like working at a hedge fund, but it was mostly because I didnt like the boss.
    Dec 24, 2018 0
  • Drive.ai slerp
    What were you doing at MSR and why did you decide to leave?
    Dec 24, 2018 1
    • Microsoft / R&D unifie
      OP
      Prefer not to answer this question for privacy
      Dec 24, 2018