Stripe pay: Not so shiny now we have OpenAI
Stripe has historically been a place where top engineers can make eye watering salaries. A levels.fyi report at the end of 2022 found that staff engineers at the payments fintech were the highest paid in the world.
Not anymore. In 2023, it's dropped a few places. The most recent report from levels.fyi has OpenAI as the top payer for staff engineers. Stripe now ranks...fourth. The average staff engineer at Stripe earns $704k but at OpenAI they earn a staggering...$925k.
The problem seems to be that pay for junior and senior engineers at Stripe is widening. Total compensation for principal and staff engineers at Stripe is rising; but for entry level engineers it's falling.
Stripes' failure to maintain compensation at junior levels means that it now ranks seventh overall for entry level engineers, fifth for senior engineers, fourth for staff engineers and second for principal engineers. Engineers with between two and five years experience can now earn $345k working for financial infrastructure fintech Plaid, and if you're early in your career, Plaid is the highest paying option in fintech.
This matters, because Plaid may be a much more enjoyable place to work. Glassdoor reviews give Stripe an average rating of 3.5 stars whereas Plaid boasts an impressive 4.2. Reviews at both companies have much praise for the quality of employees and interesting projects, but while Stripe's Collison brothers have just a 62% approval rate, Plaid CEO Zach Perret has one of 82%.
The only other fintech to make an appearance is corporate financial management platform Brex, which ranks one below Stripe for senior engineers with an average compensation of $450k. Coinbase, which ranked second overall for staff engineer pay in the 2022 report, is nowhere to be seen in 2023.
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