Microsoft wants salary expectation. First time at a Big N. Help!

Skytap Randomic
Sep 16, 2019 13 Comments

"What is your total annual compensation expectation including: base salary, bonuses and stock?"

I've only ever worked with base salary before, so I'm not sure what to do here to get the best I can. They want to make an offer for a Senior Software Engineer position on a team requiring more specialized skills (IoT, embedded, security, OS, compilers, etc).

I'm currently on $160k (base only), and I don't want my base to go down, which, looking at L63 salaries, seems like a possibility if I get this wrong. Ideally, I'd like it to go up.

How do I figure out what base, stock and bonus to ask for? If I just specify TC, I might lose out on the base. They didn't mention signing bonus, but I see that they give it sometimes. I don't have other offers right now. On-site this week for a non-Big N, and a Google phone screen coming up. Do I say anything? Do I wait? If I don't answer that question, will they make an offer first?


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TOP 13 Comments
  • Apple rainyDayz
    Bin N are FNG. Microsoft is not big N
    Sep 16, 2019 5
    • Facebook irqL16
      Yes, but no equity. And outside comp, the company itself just isn’t in the same league as the rest of FAANG. They are a one trick pony. Apple for instance redefined personal computers, online music, phones, introduced tablets. Netflix did 1 thing well.
      Sep 16, 2019
    • Facebook irqL16
      I guess my point was Microsoft > Netflix
      Sep 16, 2019
  • This comment was deleted by original commenter.

    • Pandora x0kjF
      It's a play on the Big 4 accounting firms of yesteryear. Was Big 4 tech firms (FANG) but people kept adding and removing and arguing which were the most presidgious so it became Big N. Dumb term imo.
      Sep 16, 2019
    • LinkedIn / Eng Ay45ct
      That's r/cscareerquestions notation. Big 4 used to be amazon, fb, Google, Microsoft I think, then they started using big N to describe any big tech with good engineering (think dropbox, lyft, uber,etc, anything respectable )
      Sep 16, 2019
  • Broadcom Ltd. / Eng

    Broadcom Ltd. Eng

    Intel, Broadcom Ltd.
    Sep 16, 2019 0
  • New / Product chickpea
    Don’t have experience with Microsoft, however, I think you’re ok to ask for exactly what you want with something along the lines of “I’m looking for $XXX in base, but will consider the entire package”. It’s what I did. Worked out for me.
    Sep 16, 2019 0
  • Microsoft billbill
    L63 makes 160k+ base easily. But you'll get low balled in RSUs without competing offer.
    Sep 16, 2019 0
  • Pandora x0kjF
    "Its still to early to discuss comp right now because I'm looking for a team where I can fit in and really excell. Comp comes second to that. I'll know more about comp once we move forward and I meet your team"
    Sep 16, 2019 0
  • Intel / Finance LC_ups_TC
    Why don't u just ask them what is the range for this position, ideally you want to know their range first
    Sep 16, 2019 0


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