Amazon -> HBO?

May 17, 2019 21 Comments

I'm an SDE2 at Amazon. 6 months in role. TC 180K.

On a whim, I interviewed at HBO and got an offer for Staff Engineer (equivalent title). 200K in cash and bonuses, and they're probably willing to go higher. Also, 35-hour work week.

I'm looking at 3 options:
1. Go to HBO. I'm leaning away from this because I'm afraid my career wouldn't grow as fast, although the TC bump and work-life balance are attractive.
2. Stay in current role, keep studying for interviews, interview at F/G/M + others in a few months. I'm leaning toward this.
3. Tell my manager about the job offer and ask for a raise. I don't know if people actually do this, and I'm also afraid of hurting my excellent relationship with my manager.

Thoughts?

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TOP 21 Comments
  • Google z5RtU7F
    I also vote for #2. Although, 6 months is quite short to already switch companies... I would honestly stay until I have at least a couple of impactful projects before considering a move.
    May 17, 2019 2
    • Amazon / Eng bazquux
      OP
      That's a good point - to clarify, I was promoted from SDE1, so I've been at Amazon a while.
      May 17, 2019
    • Google z5RtU7F
      Ah okay, in that case ignore what I said. I think you are actually in the perfect time to move then! (if that's what you want) Definitely prepare hard and shoot for FB/G level though imo.
      May 17, 2019
  • Amazon / Eng bazquux
    OP
    Update: After some soul-searching, I decided not to accept the offer. I felt like I hadn't experienced enough interviews to accept the first offer that came along. I'm planning to do a full round of interviews in the fall. Thanks everyone for your comments, they were super helpful!
    Jul 4, 2019 0
  • Amazon ed3Gyy
    What does HBO have besides GoT? And even that is only licensed. I don't see them having much of a chance against the many others now entering the streaming media space. They don't have enough content.
    May 17, 2019 3
    • OpenText TSLAstock🤣
      GoT prequels?
      May 17, 2019
    • Ericsson / Eng rawr🙈🙉
      I find they always have something. Entourage, the wire, got, etc
      May 17, 2019
    • I mean they’ve had consistently good exclusives for over 2 decades. Pretty sure they’ll be okay
      Aug 16, 2019
  • Microsoft BezosBalla
    1 or 2, not 3. 2 is best.
    May 17, 2019 0
  • What level at HBO? L4 or L5?

    Traditionally HBO hasn’t provided much career opportunity and really has just been a place to chill, make a decent salary, and watch your kids grow up. Great place to be in your mid 30s, maybe not your 20s though.

    Those times are a changing though thanks to our AT&T overlords. Lots of really interesting challenges are coming down the pipeline. If your primary concern coming to HBO is career growth, I wouldn’t be as worried about that.
    May 17, 2019 3
    • Amazon / Eng bazquux
      OP
      I am actually in my mid-30s and planning to have a kid this year (this is a second career), so this perspective is really valuable. Thanks!

      I'm not sure what level. Staff Engineer, not Senior Staff Engineer. I'm currently an L5 at Amazon, but I'm not sure how that translates.
      May 17, 2019
    • You are probably coming on as a L4. It’s hard to know for sure based on that TC number.

      HBO might be perfect for you if you are planning on having a kid. The WLB here is amazing. I’ve thought about looking elsewhere but with little kids I don’t think I could get what I have here anywhere else.

      And now is a particularly interesting time to start. We have lots of really interesting problems coming down the pipeline. The next couple years here will provide a lot of opportunity to have impact.

      I will echo the advice of others in the thread though. Only come on if you plan to stick it out for at least a couple years. You can then look at FAANG later. But if you want FAANG before then, stay at Amazon.
      May 17, 2019
    • Amazon on-call
      How does the bonus pay out work at HBO?
      Aug 16, 2019
  • Sprint oxpy53
    Why not 1 AND 2 ? Take the new role and continue studying for F/G/M
    May 17, 2019 0
  • New AsYK38
    Not 3
    May 17, 2019 0
  • Soothe hahawtf
    #3 is just business. Your manager has done that conversation before. That being said I had trouble negotiating at AMZN before so I’d choose #1
    May 17, 2019 1
    • New AsYK38
      If business goes down, he would be the first one to go since his manager will remember.
      May 17, 2019
  • Amazon on-call
    How does the bonus award work? Is it X % of base? And how often is it paid out?
    Aug 16, 2019 0
  • Facebook / Eng Iru
    6 mo is too short to stay at a company. Stay 1+ year at least. Go with option #2, keep practicing
    May 17, 2019 0

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