Choosing between Amazon and Microsoft.

Sep 27, 2019 48 Comments

YOE - 5 (1.5 in the US)
Master's + Bachelor's in CS
Amazon - 270k SDE2 Seattle
Microsoft - 255k L62 Redmond

Edit: Updating breakdown
Amazon: Base 155k, Bonus 105k + 85k, 100 RSUs (this was after negotiating my MS offer)
Microsoft: Base 150, Bonus 90k, Stocks 240k (stocks is what they mainly increased to match my ask)
Both companies they increased approx $40k after negotiations.

Based on several threads that I read here, I think MS has a higher effective TC (based on other benefits - 401k, Pro Club, ESPP, shuttle and cheaper food) but I'm not sure how your impact is assessed for yearly bonus.

My target was quarter of a mil and experimentation oriented heavy work.

Money is no more a factor because I got what I needed.

I just want to know where I can have a higher impact. Because both places have amazing engineers, but I want to standout.

Is it ok to go for MS? Can I switch to a different team easily there if I feel it's not running at the pace I need? (I've never worked at a large company. Current team size is 4. :p) I don't want to get complacent but I also want to spend time with my boyfriend, hangout with my friends afterwork for some random occasion and definitely on the weekends.(side eyes to on calls)

comments

Want to comment? LOG IN or SIGN UP
TOP 48 Comments
  • Amazon 638ha2
    Which team is MS / Amazon
    Sep 27, 2019 6
    • Amazon / Eng
      alphaqu

      Amazon Eng

      PRE
      Zenefits, Qualcomm, Nvidia
      alphaqumore
      Retail isn’t very interesting, good wlb though, Azure is in good place right now ( just bagged 10bn pentagon deal). I would place my bet on Microsoft. Also I would say you have good approach for looking into offers, I would rather say take your own pick!
      Oct 25, 2019
    • OP
      Thanks. I decided to go with Microsoft.. :)
      Oct 25, 2019
  • Microsoft Hollla
    Microsoft.. Better WLB, Annual Bonus, Work is depend on the team.
    And they treat you like humans.
    Sep 27, 2019 2
    • OP
      Appreciate your input. Yes. I've worked in company where I worked 85 hours a week for 2 years. I learned a lot, but started getting grey hair at age 23 (until I finally left). As long as they respect you as a person, which I think MS does, I'll consider that as a benefit. :)
      Sep 28, 2019
    • Microsoft Hollla
      About switching team, it is easy. Just approach the hiring manager. There is no interview (or less interview in some case) policy if you switch within the same org. You can switch anytime you want. Also, there is an internal career fair kind of thing once a year which makes internal mobility easy.
      Sep 28, 2019
  • Microsoft WadeWatts
    Being able to do mega backdoor Roth at MS is a huge plus.
    Sep 27, 2019 4
    • OP
      Oh wow. Never heard that. I thought maximum limit set by IRS was $19k.
      Sep 27, 2019
    • Microsoft iamletired
      Maximum pretax contribution from employee is $19k. There's an overall combined limit of $55k for all contribution sources. You have to contribute $19k to get the full $9.5k match. After that, you can contribute after tax dollars and do Roth conversion up to the $55k limit. It's a very nice benefit, though not exactly rare any more.
      Sep 28, 2019
  • Amazon tissuesplz
    Microsoft
    Sep 27, 2019 1
    • OP
      Thanks. WLB is definitely better in MS based on what I read.
      Sep 27, 2019
  • Qualtrics wudu
    Go to Amazon. I worked at both the places. Amazon has a high turnover and it is easy to create a position in team within a year that will help you create impact. In Microsoft, the managers have "Followers" that are following that manager for multiple years and creating a similar impact will take significantly more years. In Amazon, it is banned for managers to poach and they usually can't take followers when they move team.
    Sep 28, 2019 0
  • Google / Eng
    .:

    Google Eng

    PRE
    Samsung Electronics
    .:more
    Microsoft. You're also getting a lot more stocks. However, stocks are taxed at a higher rate.
    Sep 28, 2019 3
    • Google / Eng
      .:

      Google Eng

      PRE
      Samsung Electronics
      .:more
      You pay tax when they're vested. Then off course there is this bullshit thing called capital gain tax. But I'm not talking about cap gain tax.
      Sep 28, 2019
    • Salesforce / Eng Honolulu🌞
      Aren't stocks taxed at your marginal rate? Is there a special rate for vested RSU (not counting capital gains)
      Oct 17, 2019
  • Microsoft iamletired
    $240k stock is REALLY high for L62. Good job negotiating. Caveat is there's basically no way you don't face a massive cliff in 4 years. You could avoid it by getting top rewards every year and hitting L64, but that's basically it. And you have maybe a 1% chance of doing that. WLB is VERY dependent on team and org. it is not universally good just as it isn't universally bad at Amazon. Also, is that $90k a sign on bonus? Just want to make sure you know your target bonus will be 10% with minimal annual stock.
    Sep 28, 2019 4
    • OP
      True.. But luckily not in the team I'm going to
      Sep 28, 2019
    • Microsoft iamletired
      target bonus is 10% but can go up to 20% (forget getting top rewards every year, won't happen). stock is around $11k annually vesting over 5 years.
      Sep 28, 2019
  • Microsoft
    shenierb d

    Microsoft

    PRE
    Google, Amazon, Facebook
    shenierb dmore
    I’ve worked at both. At Microsoft, your team could be working on something exactly same as some other. Years later some higher up will come in to clean up. And that means you could be reorg’d a million times. Better benefits for sure. At Amazon Almost 100% of the time you will be working on something that directly adds value to a customer (who is paying for it). And changing between teams at Amazon is trivial. At Microsoft you have go through almost a full loop again.

    And this is why I choose Amazon
    Sep 28, 2019 4
    • Microsoft
      shenierb d

      Microsoft

      PRE
      Google, Amazon, Facebook
      shenierb dmore
      I chose Amazon because I know my team is definitely making money or is on a path to make money. At Microsoft, even if I’m working on a brand new product, there’s more chances that it hasn’t been vetted out with real customers. And that means nobody would know what that product is outside of Microsoft.
      Sep 28, 2019
    • OP
      That's true.
      Sep 28, 2019
  • Google engg1
    Those numbers are quite high for L5 and 62. How are you calculating them?
    Sep 27, 2019 2
    • OP
      Updated on the post. I think my interview went pretty well. I do feel it's an outlier. But they might have liked my previous projects.
      Sep 27, 2019
    • Google / Eng
      .:

      Google Eng

      PRE
      Samsung Electronics
      .:more
      MS and Amazon started to pay really well compared to G nowadays.
      Sep 28, 2019
  • EMC
    listArray

    EMC

    PRE
    500 Startups
    listArraymore
    Can you share the compensation breakdown and location.
    Sep 27, 2019 1

Salary
Comparison

    Real time salary information from verified employees