FAANG (London) -> Self Employed (Not-London)

Aug 20, 2019 6 Comments

Worked at FAANG in London. Started interviewing elsewhere but most TC packages are around the 100k mark (+/-10k). After tax that is 65k. Assuming I continue living off 2.5k-3k a month (rent, food, travel etc) that leaves 30k ish a year in savings (non ISA). Tbh the quality of my life isnt great so I am re-evaluating. My comp packages have always been <80k post graduation.


(1) Take up freelance work and build my client base for myself (NOT office based contract work). I can do the accounting myself. I can earn the same net monthly pay I did from FAANG through 20 hours of work a week. (I have secured contracts like this and its fairly stable). This also means I can leave London as I can WFH. If I worked 40 hours/week therefore, assuming my pay doesnt decrease (realistically it is going up if anything), I would be putting away 65-70k a year in savings which is repectable. In 2-3 years I could buy a non-London flat and basically live life freely. (I could also move to Barcelona where rent is cheaper and the taxes for self employed are less for 2 years).

(2) Join another FAANG and try to relocate to the US. I’ve not completed my Masters (but have a BSc and 5 years experience) but didnt see a way of relocating to the US in my current company (most roles in the field either didnt sponsor a VISA or required many more years experience/higher level). I have seen better salaries (150-250k USD) for engineers there but these numbers are not possible in the UK unless...

(3) I focus on getting into finance (bank, hedge funds, asset management etc) who are dishing out 150k base comp and bonuses. This means staying in the UK and I can always do plan (1) while preparing for plan (3).

I am unlikely to want to be a traditional Software Engineer (no disrepect) making VISA sponsorship harder. I have a data background so Data Engineering or Analytics seems like my best shot. Data Science may be possible but FAANG often ask for PHDs.

I basically dont understand how remaining at FAANG or moving to another company with a TC of 100k makes sense in London. I dont want to do anything else though as I enjoy deta stuff but the FAANG/office job path seems to leave me kinda stuck.

Any advice?


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TOP 6 Comments
  • Booking.com / Eng Qaer42
    Another UK SDE (2 YOE, TC 60k) here hoping to get into FAANG then move to the US later. Will FAANGs not transfer you to the US once you have 2/3 years exp with them if you request it?
    Aug 21, 2019 1
    • Amazon gYLH88
      For SDE I know they allow you to move after 1 year internally yes. I meant for other roles.
      Aug 21, 2019
  • Microsoft softFag
    Get masters in CS (AI /ML) in US.
    Aug 20, 2019 3
    • New / Eng

      New Eng

      TC or GTFO
      If it’s not Oxbridge, sorry mate
      Aug 20, 2019
    • Amazon gYLH88
      It is Oxbridge :)
      Aug 21, 2019


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