Got an offer from Google, fear its a lowball?

Mar 14, 2019 53 Comments

I am leaving Microsoft after 3.5 years. Started out of college and am an L60. Didnt do so hot due to personal issues and never dug myself out of the hole (judge away), so no promo in sight realistically yet my managers keep holding the carrot on the stick. Bitterness/venting aside, here are the numbers Google offered me:

118K base, 35K signing, 150K stock over 4 years. This is approximately 170K TC with 15% target bonus, not counting a refresher, and assuming ‘Meets Expectation’ performance.

I also received offers from Amazon and Palantir that are sort of comparable.

Palantir: 165K base, 25K signing, 30,000 options (~400K value), with guaranteed 20% raise after 18 months (198K base after, have it in writing), 10% target bonus
Amazon (SDE1): 130K base, 45K Y1 signing, 37K Y2 signing, 61 RSUs (100K)

All of the above I have in writing.

The Google offer seems low when comparing to levels.fyi for others in my YoE band who also got L3 offers.

Can someone confirm? My current salary is 120K and so Google’s base is less than I currently make.

Also my recruiter is very “threatening”. Says a lot of things like “Do you know how many people I reject everyday?”. Wondering if this is normal and if not, how can I report it, because it seems disrespectful.

Assuming options are worthless, Palantir’s offer seems stronger, but Google didn’t budge.

Interested in others’ thoughts. Thank you!

UPDATE:

I told Google that I was taking another offer, though I didn’t give details. I asked them for 135K base, 35K signing, and 220K stock. This is a huge increase but thought I might throw a Hail Mary. They called back in 5 minutes and said no. The moral of the story to me at least is you must have a competing offer that Google internally considers better. My recruiter mentioned a tool he used where he plugged in other offers and it determined if the compete was better or not. Alternatively, make it very clear that you value something else highly that Google cannot offer.

The offer I ended up taking was Mixpanel: 165K base, 10% target bonus, 30K signing, 500K options (worthless on paper). It checked all the boxes (good manager, interesting work, nice people) except compensation, and when I asked them to match Palantir they went above and beyond. Maybe I’m still underpaid, but I’m much better than when I started and can build some momentum in a new role.

My recruiter’s last words were: “Going to Palantir over Google, I don’t understand it, but hey, I wish you the best”

Thank you for all your help!

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TOP 53 Comments
  • Amadeus Trick2g
    Cook up your amazon offer by 25% and bring the heat on the google hr. Ignore the condescending words and be firm on wanting more than your highest offer. Make them feel that you are willing to walk away if they don’t play ball. Stay strong and negotiate aggressively! You are in a great spot with multiple offers. The google recruiter has no leverage over you and is showing aggression as a last resort to make you sign a lowball offer. Don’t fall for it. Cook up your other offers and tell him to beat it or gtfo.
    Mar 14, 2019 4
    • Amadeus Trick2g
      Every company will negotiate if you know how to negotiate.
      Mar 15, 2019
    • Microsoft ahnx86
      OP
      I messed uo the negotiation a little but there is always next time :).
      Mar 15, 2019
  • Microsoft maxiam
    Very low, but I guess if you don't have much leverage you don't have any options
    Mar 14, 2019 8
    • Amadeus Trick2g
      The google recruiter doesn’t know that he wants to take the offer. He can threaten to walk away because he has multiple offers.
      Mar 15, 2019
    • Microsoft ahnx86
      OP
      Posted an update. It wasn’t my #1 choice actually, but I didn’t communicate that.
      Mar 15, 2019
  • Google rfg
    Could you give us the name of the recruiter. Bullying is NOT okay and not condoned by Google. This is something you should raise with the hiring manager you had a team fit call with (if you had one).
    Mar 14, 2019 5
    • The recruiter is right about one thing. The bar does keep getting higher. I think most people at Google wouldn’t be able to interview back into the company right now.

      But you are being lowballed a little.
      Mar 14, 2019
    • Pandora heCode
      That is no way to get a candidate to accept an offer. I’d definitely have them counter offer or walk. If there’s one thing recruiters like more than hiring; it’s hiring the one that got away. They have a whole recruiting team at google focused on relationship building with candidates who declined. This is not your only chance.
      Mar 14, 2019
  • Google Mmkaay
    How dare you write about me this way. I am going to withdraw your offer
    Mar 14, 2019 5
    • Google Mmkaay
      If they have @google.com email (they do) then they can
      Mar 14, 2019
    • T-Mobile WozniAK
      And counteroffer for catching the bully you are ☺️
      Mar 14, 2019
  • Yahoo / Eng
    [ralph]

    Yahoo Eng

    PRE
    Yahoo
    [ralph]more
    Lol. Bullying recruiter.
    Mar 14, 2019 0
  • Tableau Zero Cool
    If you have 3.5 yoe and you are still and SDE1, I don't think it would be a lowball.
    You might be a fine engineer, but honestly you don't have much to show. They see candidates that got to Senior in 3.5 years
    Mar 14, 2019 3
    • Tableau Zero Cool
      Starting over on a new environment is the right choice, if you manage to pick up stuff fast you will get promoted easily.
      At 3.5 yoe depending on your background system design interviews might be quite hard, because they expect some experience that not everyone has.
      Btw, your recruiter is an asshole, they shouldn't do that kind of thing
      Mar 14, 2019
    • Bloomberg / Eng
      Fork()

      Bloomberg Eng

      PRE
      Amazon
      Fork()more
      Yeah, that's the red flag here and hence the compensation. If they were L61±,
      Mar 14, 2019
  • Microsoft hellobyby
    Go palantir
    Mar 14, 2019 0
  • Facebook Probe
    Kinda sad Amazon's offering SDE1 when you have 3.5 yoe no?
    Mar 14, 2019 3
    • Cisco / Eng Intervie
      If you are average, how did you crack all these interviews? Imposter syndrome???
      Mar 14, 2019
    • Microsoft ahnx86
      OP
      Thank you for the kind words :0. Maybe I just think I'm average :o, but no I think it's more that I studied for 2-3 months and have above average people skills. I also think it is luck of the draw. I will tell you that I was rejected at the phone screen stage for the following companies (something I am going to try and rectify if I decide to leave again): Uber, Dropbox, Airbnb, Stripe. This tells me my actual programming didn't benefit much from my leetcoding.
      Mar 14, 2019
  • Google TcYaBahar?
    You should show the recruiter who is in a stronger position here. Let them know you are picking palantir over them (You really should). Tell them to have a nice day and watch them get back to you with higher offer.
    Mar 14, 2019 1
    • Microsoft Mindfuck
      I would do this, but also specify "I'm a little disappointed because I really envisioned myself excelling with google, but unfortunately , the compensation at palantir is much greater so I'm going to have to take that offer.". To which they will likely reply "how much more would you need to come here instead?" Make sure you have a number ready :) max signing bonus (so I was told, can't confirm" is 50, and salary is hard to push. But stock can be greatly increased.
      Mar 15, 2019
  • Google VROC85
    Take Palantir. Founded by Peter Thiel they do some pretty state of the art tech. At Google at L3 you can end up doing inconsequential things.
    Mar 14, 2019 1
    • Amadeus Trick2g
      Yeah but they will never ipo. So his tc will only be base pay. What’s the point.
      Mar 14, 2019

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