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    How to Effectively Negotiate Your Salary in a Tough Market (5 Tactics)

    Salary negotiation is not easy, and that may be especially true in an uncertain economy. While a down market presents its challenges, this doesn’t mean you have to settle for less than you deserve. Let’s talk about how to approach salary negotiation as a jobseeker navigating a tough market. 

    Tip: Before you enter any negotiation, it’s essential to research your industry’s average salaries and determine your worth. Try Hired’s Salary Calculator to do just that. It’s powered by real salary offers on the Hired talent marketplace.

    Is now a good time to negotiate your salary? 

    In our virtual event, Ahead of the Curve: Adapting and Advancing in a New Era of Tech Careers, Rora’s General Manager Jordan Sale shared some of her negotiating expertise. Jordan prefers to avoid promising whether it’s a good or bad time to negotiate. She views salary negotiation as personal and dependent on individual circumstances. 

    Related: 2023 Tech Hiring: 7 Ways to Stay Competitive in Tough Job Markets 

    “If you have a job, three job offers, savings in the bank, and you are maybe going to take some time away from work, then it’s a great time to negotiate. If you have been unemployed for months, are running out of runway, and were barely able to get a job offer after interviewing over and over, it may not be quite as good of a time to negotiate.”

    Jordan encourages jobseekers to not get swept up in the urgency and scarcity of the market. Instead, really think about where you are. Evaluating your current situation is what will truly shed light on whether it’s a “good time” to negotiate. 

    Jordan also explained how “companies are certainly trying to use the current market to dissuade candidates from negotiation.” Jordan adds, “I would be shocked if anyone tries to negotiate right now and doesn’t get a stock line from the company such as: 

    ‘Because of the market, this is the top of our range’ 

    ‘This is as high as we’ll be able to go’

    ‘We have a lot of other candidates in the pipeline’

    Expect to hear this and don’t pay too much attention to them.” 

    Ultimately, Jordan emphasizes jobseekers must distinguish the company’s stock language around the offer and what they’re hearing from the hiring manager. The hiring manager is the person who owns the role. Jordan says, “If they are reaching out to you every two days to see how you’re feeling about it and saying they are really excited for you to join, you are in a great position to negotiate.” 

    The hiring manager is responsible for extending an offer (or taking it away if circumstances change). So, if jobseekers receive “consistent messaging from the hiring manager and recruiter saying it’s competitive and they can’t move on the offer because they have other people in the pipeline, it’s probably not as good of a time to negotiate.”

    Approaching the salary negotiation during a tough market: 5 tactics 

    1. Practice your pitch 

    Ginny Cheng, Global Head of Talent at Oura and another panelist at the Ahead of the Curve event reminds jobseekers to “think of negotiation as a conversation.”

    She adds, “Regardless of the market, you should get comfortable with asking and negotiating because practice will make it less awkward. You’ll continue to need to influence and negotiate once you start working in the company. We’re always negotiating at work.” 

    While you want to be assertive and communicate your needs clearly in the conversation, you should also be empathetic and open to listening, i.e. read the room. Understand that businesses too face challenges during economic downturns. That doesn’t mean you should undervalue yourself but achieving a balance portrays confidence and understanding.

    2. Find new avenues for salary research

    Ginny says, “Pay transparency on job descriptions offers a foundational understanding and helps jobseekers know if they are at the higher end of the salary range or vice versa.” 

    Salary transparency is a key aspect of Hired’s matchmaking service and a core part of our mission to make hiring more equitable, efficient, and transparent for all. Jobseekers list a preferred salary on their Hired profile as part of the transparency of the marketplace process. This provides better matches with employers and eliminates one of the biggest potential obstacles to efficient hiring.

    Related: Empower Your Career: Understanding Salary Inequality in Tech (2023 Research) 

    So what can talent do as part of their research? Ginny recommends they “look at competitors’ job descriptions that have the job pay range. This gives an idea of the company you’re applying for. Is it similar in size or scope? This provides better knowledge to do that research.”

    Another idea for doing research: Ask about compensation philosophy. Jon Dobrowolski, Hired’s VP of Product (and the virtual event’s moderator) adds, “This is something so many people miss out on. Ask folks doing similar work to you. It gives you an idea of pay ranges at their companies without directly asking how much they make. That could put you in a position to have a good conversation with a recruiter or a hiring manager.” 

    Quick Tip: Feel awkward asking or don’t feel you know them well enough to ask? Try this method. Ask if it’s “more than X.” Yes? Ask again, increasing “X” by 5-10K. Try to understand the salary number or the compensation package, as respectfully as possible, in order to compare apples to apples, as best you can. 

    3. Consider non-monetary perks

    While the base salary is essential, don’t forget about other benefits. Perhaps the company can’t budge on the base salary but is open to offering more vacation days, flexible work hours, professional development opportunities, or even stock options. These perks may even outweigh a higher salary in the long run.

    Tip: Discover what you can negotiate (besides salary) in our Ultimate Guide to Salary Negotiation 

    Jon reflects on his own experience as a hiring manager: “I saw this recently with someone that we had to, unfortunately, turn away: They had a very high salary ask. We were dying to get them into the company. But they didn’t help us understand what they valued as much as the money. Help us help you by explaining where we can offer additional learning development opportunities, a sign-on bonus, or something else that gets you where you want to be.

    Without understanding what is valuable to you as a jobseeker, it’s difficult for us to construct an offer that makes sense for everyone. The more information brought into those conversations, the more successful everyone will be.”

    4. Have a Plan B

    Always be prepared for the possibility that negotiations might not go your way. This could mean having another job offer in hand or being ready to decline and continue your job search. It’s essential to know your bottom line and be willing to walk away if it isn’t met.

    5. Consult a salary negotiation mentor or coach

    If you’re uncertain about how to navigate the negotiation process, consider seeking guidance from a mentor or a professional coach experienced in salary negotiations. Our recommendation? Rora – a group of experienced job offer negotiation professionals (like Jordan Sale) dedicated to helping top researchers and engineers land the right job. 

    Related: Hired partners prepared to equip jobseekers for every phase of their job search.

    Stay optimistic while negotiating your salary in an uncertain economy

    Negotiating your salary in a down market may not be ideal. However, with preparation, empathy, and a clear understanding of your value, you can navigate the salary negotiation process successfully. Remember: tough times don’t last but tough negotiators do! More

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    Dear Developers: Coding Languages That Will Set You Apart in 2023

    Any software engineer will tell you: There are a plethora of coding languages out there and varying attitudes toward each at both the company and individual levels. To dive deeper, Hired’s 2023 State of Software Engineers report examines coding languages that set candidates apart from their peers and the preferences of developers.

    Which programming skills were highest in demand by employers? 

    In 2022, engineers skilled in Ruby on Rails received 1.64X more interview requests compared to Hired’s marketplace average. This year, Ruby on Rails moved up one position to take the top slot as the most in-demand engineer skill. Ruby and Scala came in second and third.

    Hired CTO Dave Walters said, “Ruby on Rails is a very mature and easy-to-use framework, which leads to its popularity among engineers and engineering leaders. It allows for faster coding (or increased productivity) which helps engineers deliver minimum viable products and features at a higher pace.”

    In 2021, the leading programming skill was Go. Larger companies such as Slack and Twitch rapidly adopted it last year. Its simplicity and power made it popular among engineers. Dave added, “While a favorite among engineers, Go may be less in demand by employers now due to a temporary shift in hiring needs.”

    Related: Inside the Coding Challenge: A Hiring Manager’s Perspective 

    How the engineers feel about coding skills

    Employer demands aside, developers themselves have their own opinions of the different coding languages. This is often due to how many resources there are for learning and development related to a particular language or how “fun” they are to use.

    In our survey of over 1,300 software engineers, we found engineers ranked Python as their favorite programming language. JavaScript and Java followed as the second and third choices.

    Beyond coding languages

    Knowing which languages will set you apart from the rest can help you make your profile more attractive to prospective employers. However, it’s just one piece of the engineering talent puzzle. 

    Related: Code Your Career: Staying Competitive in the Developer Job Market (VIDEO) 

    In addition to more granularity about coding languages and their competitiveness, the 2023 State of Software Engineers report dives into top roles, market trends, and salaries. The research gives you a better overview of:

    The state of the market

    Where the market is going

    How to best tailor your experiences and skills

    Originally written by Napala Pratini in March 2019. Updated by Hired Content Team in October 2023. More

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    Adapting and Advancing in a New Era of Tech Careers (VIDEO)

    We’ve seen a lot of changes in the hiring market in the past year, including the massive onset of AI and instability in the economy. The job search might feel a bit more grueling than you remember. Every role seems to have more applicants, interview processes are increasingly difficult, and employers appear more resistant to job offer negotiations.

    Looking for a refreshing reboot on the job search? Watch this on-demand webinar to hear experts discuss key findings from Hired’s 2023 State of Tech Salaries report, share how AI and skill demands are reshaping technical job opportunities and compensation, and how to stand out as a tech candidate.

    You’ll hear from:

    VP of Prodct, Hired, Jon Dobrowolski

    General Manager, Rora, Jordan Sale

    Global Head of Talent, Oura, Ginny Cheng

    Founder & CEO, AI Makerspace, Greg Loughnane 

    Co-Founder & CEO, Educative, Fahim ul Haq

    Read an excerpt of the conversation here and scroll down to access the full webinar. 

    How will automation put technical roles at risk? With AI, where do we see the most dramatic changes and opportunities?


    I think automation is this double-edged sword where it’s a job killer but also a job creator. I was talking to somebody who was into object-oriented programming in the early 2000s. It’s no different now than it was then. It’s just a different paradigm. 

    Make sure you’re focusing on how your job, domain of practice, and things you do every day can be augmented with AI tools to improve your own personal workflows are your tasks as an individual. 

    At the company level, it’s about how to adapt to this shifting competitive landscape. That company leader problem is a bit more complicated because there will be plenty of AI laggards within the company. That’s a whole rabbit hole. Many consultants and folks are always focused on helping large corporations move through this AI transformation. 

    But as an individual, it’s easier. If you’re watching this panel, you’re doing the right thing.Are you using ChatGPT, DALL-E, Bing, or Claude? Next month, this is going to be a year old. It’s really time to get with the program and start trying to improve your personal workflows. 

    If you take, as an example, data scientists, they are still going to be useful moving forward.However, it’s not clear to most people today exactly what the data scientists of tomorrow will be working on. When we start building large language model applications, we start putting them into production. There are a lot of things on the data science side that will need to be done. 

    However, most data scientists still don’t know how to do those today. The closer you are to the cutting edge, the faster you’ll have to learn. Those looking to get into engineering, data science, and tech in general, have a level playing field if they’re willing to learn those new skills now. 

    Get in on that 2024 Goldrush and celebrate this one-year ChatGPT anniversary. You’ve got as much opportunity as anybody else. Nobody’s that far ahead today. Start embracing that opportunity space today.

    Watch the full collaborative panel discussion to learn: 

    Whether it is worthwhile for jobseekers to follow skill demand trends

    How to effectively communicate willingness to upskill to potential employers

    Nuances to be aware of during a job search in this new, dynamic market

    How to negotiate in a tough hiring market More

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    Interviewing for an Engineering Manager Role? 15 Questions You Should be Prepared to Answer

    We break engineering manager interview questions down to work history, the open role, and behavioral situations.

    Congratulations! You have an interview to become an engineering manager. That’s great news. There’s just one problem – interviewing to become an engineering manager is probably going to be quite a bit different from your previous interviews.

    Here are 15 common engineering manager interview questions every candidate should prepare for. If you thoughtfully consider them and have good answers for each, you’ll be well on your way to nailing the interview.

    Related: Interviewing with the CTO? 3 Strategies to Help Prepare

    Basic work history questions

    These questions are among the most basic, but can still be very hard to answer if you’re not prepared for them. Be sure to know your resume and cover letter inside and out. I find it helps to think of your career as a series of short “stories.”

    In addition, this is a golden opportunity to really put your best foot forward. Take control of the interview, delving into what you think is most relevant to the job. Take this opportunity to connect them to your strengths.

    If you think of your interview as a movie, this is the trailer meant to get people excited about going to see the movie.

    Example questions for Engineering Manager Roles on work history:

    Tell us about yourself

    What was your role with your previous employer?

    Why did you leave your last role?

    How many direct reports have you managed in the past?

    What’s the largest budget you’ve ever managed?

    Questions about the open role

    These questions probe how interested you are in the role and how hard you worked to learn more about it. It’s also an indirect gauge of how your previous experience has helped you to understand what the role requires. If you’re able to glean interesting insights from the job posting that others can’t, interviewers will notice that.

    When I interview someone for a position, I want to know how invested they are in getting the job. I want someone who’s eager. A good way to parse that out is to determine whether they’ve done their homework or not, and it’s these kinds of questions that I use to determine just that.

    Example questions for Engineering Manager candidates on the open role:

    What can you tell us about the role you’re applying for?

    Which aspects of the role do you anticipate are the most challenging?

    What can you tell us about this company?

    How do you think your skills match our needs?

    Behavioral questions

    Behavioral questions are very common for engineering management interviews. These questions demand that you be quick on your feet. Again, it’s important to remember your stories and to be able to draw from them to apply them to the question at hand.

    If you know your stories, you likely don’t need to imagine what you would do in a given situation, you can discuss what you really did do and how you might do things differently in the future given what you’ve learned from your experience.

    One useful framework that I’ve learned for answering questions like these is called STAR:





    When answering behavioral questions, try hard to:

    Cover what exactly happened (Situation),

    What you had to do in that situation (Task),

    What you did as an individual (Action), and

    How things played out as a result (Result).

    Related: What is the Star Method and How to Incorporate it into Interviews

    With this approach, you clearly define what happened and how you personally contributed to its resolution.

    Example behavioral questions for Engineering Manager candidates:

    Tell us about a time you made a mistake. What happened and what did you learn from it?

    Share an example of when you faced a conflict.

    Tell us about a time when you faced an ethical dilemma.

    How did you handle it when a project was coming down to the wire – what did you do?

    Related: 30 Behavioral Interview Questions You Should Be Ready to Answer.

    Closing questions for Engineering Manager candidates

    When going into an interview, it’s important to consider what you want to learn from the employer and the things you want them to learn about you.

    In the past, I’ve gone as far as bringing lists of things to learn and communicate into an interview and crossing things off as they were discussed. This is important because in the end, you’ll get a critical opportunity to deal with any items you haven’t yet crossed off.

    Is there anything else you would like us to know about you?

    Do you have any questions for us?

    It’s likely that the engineering manager interview questions you face will be different from anything else you’ve experienced before. If you go into your interview prepared to answer these questions, you’ll be well on your way to taking the next big step in your career.

    Finally, before starting salary negotiations in an engineering manager interview, be sure to check out:

    Originally written by Patrick Sweet in April 2019. Update by the Hired Content team in October 2023. More

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    Ready to Start Programming with AI? A Quick Guide for Software Engineers

    Though we’re still a ways out from building machines that will take over the world with artificial superintelligence, AI is on the rise. To sum up the recent explosion of generative AI, Vijay Pande, a general partner at venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, tells the Washington Post:

    “There’s a lot of excitement about AI right now. The technology has… gone from being cute and interesting to where actually [people] can see it being deployed.”

    AI has found its way into a myriad of applications (think: innovative approaches to coding reviews, testing, debugging) and is quickly becoming an advantage for staying competitive. Talent will likely be expected to leverage AI tools in their workflows to be more effective and efficient. In fact, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that 37% of job descriptions listed AI work and skills in the emerging tech category. 

    This includes building programs to understand and help us humans in our day-to-day lives, like Siri, Alexa, and countless chatbots. It can make operations networks, like Amazon’s, hyper-efficient by predicting who will want what, when and where. It can also focus on research, with programmed learning able to evaluate results against hypotheses, and adjust and retest to advance our understanding of the world.

    Tip: Try some courses on AI and Machine Learning

    If nothing else, having some familiarity with AI could give you some Thanksgiving dinner fodder to blow your grandparents’ minds. But it also could lead to promising new career opportunities.

    Why AI?

    If you’re looking to add to your repertoire to boost your marketability as a software engineer, artificial intelligence is a safe bet. According to Hired’s 2023 State of Software Engineers report, demand for machine learning and data engineers ranks among the hottest software engineering roles.

    Here are a few lucrative roles for which AI programming may get you noticed:

    The other reason for picking this up is pretty simple: it’s cool as hell!

    The field of artificial intelligence is an exercise in replicating the very thing that (most of us would consider) makes us human. The emergent property of our trillions of synapses firing in a symphony gives me the sense that I am “me,” and each of you the sense that you are “you.”

    Though most applications facilitate learning-focused, singular tasks or making predictions based on massive data sets, there is still something special about working to bring machines to recreate biological capabilities. And even in weak AI, the possibilities are endless to help the world become a better place with creative, elegant software. And isn’t that what we all want?

    How to start programming with AI

    When it comes to picking the right language to get your career on an AI track, you need to decide what type of work you want to be doing and evaluate that against the support and pre-built libraries that can assist you along the way.

    Start with a general language that works well with data processing and analysis. The most prominent and in-demand at tech companies are Python, Java (or Scala), or R (if you exclusively want to be a data scientist). Choose just one.

    Learn a language for interacting with a database management system (DBMS) that will help you access and organize the data you’ll use in your algorithms. Knowing SQL and understanding basic NoSQL is highly recommended. If entering a larger company, Hadoop, Spark, or similar will also be helpful.

    Understand the key frameworks and libraries for building AI solutions. Some that are important for common AI problems are:

    TensorFlow (a must!): used for high-volume, complex numerical computations used for things like classification, regression, and clustering

    Caffe: used for image recognition

    Scikit-learn: used for common AI problems and data mining

    NLTK: used for natural language processing

    Try online courses for programming with AI

    It’s also helpful to experiment with the growing AI packages provided by online course providers like Coursera.

    Getting started with AI

    Getting deeper into machine learning:

    And some additional resources:

    Like any new skill, it will take discipline to master programming with AI. But from the practical to the theoretical, from the present to the future: programming with AI is a worthy practice to add to your tool belt.

    Originally written by Mike Parker in May 2019. Updated by Hired Content Team and Coursera in October 2023. More

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    Why Your Career Narrative Is Just as Important as Your Work History

    To maximize your chances of making a meaningful impression and landing a phone screen with the recruiter, offer a clear career narrative upfront. Recruiters and hiring managers are busy reviewing dozens or even hundreds of applications for a single role. They only have a few minutes (if that) to look at your resume, LinkedIn, portfolio, or Hired profile.

    In today’s competitive job market, simply having a list of past roles and accomplishments isn’t enough. The most successful jobseekers tell a compelling story — a career narrative — that positions them as the ideal fit for the roles they pursue.

    Here’s how to do it.

    Connect the dots

    First things first, a career narrative isn’t just a retelling of your job history. It’s a strategic story that connects the dots between where you’ve been, where you are, and where you want to go. Its purpose is to help potential employers see not just what you’ve done, but who you are as a professional and how you’ll add value to their organization.

    Begin by making a list of the roles you’ve held, projects you’ve undertaken, challenges you’ve faced, and accomplishments you’ve achieved. Go beyond the resume bullet points and think deeply about what each experience taught you, how you grew, and how each step led you to the next.

    As you reflect, you’ll likely notice recurring themes or patterns. Maybe it’s a passion for leading teams, an ability to optimize processes, or a knack for solving complex problems. This common thread will be a cornerstone of your career narrative.

    Don’t be afraid to mention challenges head-on in your career narrative too. Highlight what you learned from them, how you overcame them, and how those experiences equipped you for future roles.

    Finally, while it’s important to know your entire history, you don’t have to share every detail in your narrative. Instead, pick out 3-4 defining moments that exemplify your professional growth, showcase your skills, or highlight key transitions. These will serve as the main “chapters” of your story.

    Have a catchy headline

    You know that sentence at the top of your resume or below your name on your Hired or LinkedIn profile? That’s your headline. It provides a snapshot of who you are, what you do, and how much value you might add to an organization in just a sentence. It should be impactful, catchy, and clearly state what job you currently have and/or are pursuing.

    A few things to keep in mind:

    If you’re a new grad, your headline should clearly communicate the role you are looking to be in.

    If you have multiple years of experience, your headline should highlight key skills and what you’re looking for in your next opportunity.

    Here are a few examples to start:

    A headline for a mid-level software engineer with an interest in artificial intelligence and machine learning could be: “Java engineer with 5+ years of experience, seeking roles in AI and ML.”

    Let’s break it down. The headline states:

    The language they’ve worked with the most often and recently (Java)

    How long they’ve been doing this (at least 5 years)

    What they’d like to focus on (artificial intelligence and machine learning)

    A recent grad who just earned a visual design degree should have a headline reflecting this experience: “Junior visual designer with strong interest in typography seeking role in edtech.” It might be tempting to include personal interests. However, you only have one chance to make an impression on the recruiter.

    Be strategic about your summary

    Think of your summary as an extension of your headline. This section allows you to build out the details of your headline. Do so by including context around your past experience (if you have it) or talk about your motivations for the role you’re looking for. This is your opportunity to provide a glimpse into your three-minute elevator pitch before diving into your work history.

    In your summary, write up to three paragraphs touching on the following points:

    What job you want

    What you’ve done

    What skills you have

    Why you are the perfect candidate for the role

    Remove the guesswork

    If you have a diverse skill set spanning several disciplines, tell them which you’re most interested in and try to zero in on one or two roles at most. For example, if you’ve worked as both a backend engineer and a data engineer, make it clear you’d like to continue pursuing a career in data engineering.

    If you have a background in graphic design and just completed a user experience design bootcamp, tell them you’re looking for user experience design roles. Employers can only guess what interests you. Make the job easy for them by explicitly stating the roles you want.

    After discussing the job you’re looking for, explain how your previous experience explicitly relates to the role you’re pursuing. Provide a few lines about what you’ve worked on, what languages, skills, programs, or tools you’ve used, and any achievements.

    Next, state how your experiences make you the perfect candidate for the job. Don’t hesitate to mention professional attributes. That could be adaptability and strong communication skills that make you stand out and contributed to your previous successes. Your objective is to keep the message focused so it retains the hiring manager’s attention.

    Inject personality into your profile

    After establishing your career narrative in your headline and summary, give your resume and online profiles a breath of life by adding your personality. Bringing your application to life will make you stand out among dozens of other applicants. Plus, it will also make you more memorable to hiring managers.

    Your application will be judged in part by how well you convey the qualities that would make you successful in the role. As an engineer, you’re supposed to use logic, rationality, and consistency. If your work is primarily client-focused, attributes such as being personable and relatable will be prioritized. If you’re applying for a role in design, you should represent yourself in interesting, unique ways.

    Show employers what you do best

    But how do you insert your personality? If you’re a good writer, show off your skills. Being able to write well is not an inherent skill. For example, if you’re a product manager, it’s important to communicate effectively since time is often not a luxury. While you can probably write a lot about your experience, whittle each role down to five points. They should touch on each aspect of your job in the work experience sections.

    If you’re a designer, prove it. Don’t just use a generic resume template. Instead, make your own résumé with the design programs you rely on every day. Designers need to know how to organize information clearly. So make sure to keep the design fundamentals of type, space, and color in mind. A visual designer will be judged on the quality of their visual layout. Your resume and portfolio should accurately reflect your skill level.

    As always, stay on topic. If it doesn’t make sense to talk about your love of coffee as it pertains to your desired role, exclude those details from your resume. Add anything that relates to the role in question and nothing more.

    Moving forward with your career narrative

    Be sure to practice telling your narrative. Whether it’s in a job interview, a networking event, or a casual conversation, being able to articulate your story confidently and coherently will leave a lasting impression. With these tips in mind, you’ll grab the attention of hiring managers and be that much closer to getting your dream job.

    As you progress in your career, gain more experience, and achieve new milestones, revisit and refresh your narrative. Your story is ever-evolving, just like you.

    Originally written by Brittany Curran in March 2018. Updated by Hired Content Team September 2023. More

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    Tech Candidate Spotlight – Gian Frangiamore, iOS Engineer in the UK

    Can you share a little bit about your educational background? 

    For the most part, I’m self-taught. I did join a bootcamp that taught me the basic fundamentals of software development. Shortly after, I found my first job as a software developer through an apprenticeship. 

    What has made the biggest impact on your tech career? 

    I’d say developing my own app was the most impactful. Not only did I learn a lot along the way, but it also gave me something to showcase when applying for jobs and to speak about when interviewing.

    What would you like to learn more about?

    At the moment I’m very focused on my iOS career. However, I am interested to see what kind of impact Apple’s Vision Pro will have on the industry. When the first iPhone launched, it didn’t even have an App Store. Now, look at where we are. Maybe this will open up a whole new career path – visionOS engineer. Who knows!

    What led you to pursue a career in tech?

    I’ve always been interested in anything to do with tech. Like many others, I was the go-to IT guy in the family (really all I did was turn it off and on again!). I didn’t know exactly what career path to go down when I finished college. However, once I started learning about software development, it really interested me and here I am today!

    Related: Code Your Career: Staying Competitive in the Developer Job Market (VIDEO)

    How has your skill set evolved over the course of your career?

    I started out as a software developer working with a bunch of different languages and frameworks. That included JavaScript, Java, C#, and SQL to name a few. I started learning more about app development soon after. That’s when I found my love for Swift. I then decided to create my own app, which led me down the career path as an iOS engineer.

    Related: Hired Releases 2023 State of Software Engineers Report

    For the past few years, I’ve mainly been focusing on iOS development. I’m really enjoying it. I think it’s amazing to have an app (or work on one) used by people all over the world!

    How is your new role different from previous ones? 

    The industry has shifted from housing to finance. But the roles are very similar. I’m still doing what I love, which is working on native apps for iOS.

    In my previous roles, I’ve worked in small teams. I’m looking forward to working in a larger team at JPMorgan where we can bounce ideas off each other and learn from one another. I’m also excited to work for such a large and well-known company.

    What was your job search experience like before you joined Hired?

    I used LinkedIn a lot to apply for jobs and even reached out directly to the hiring managers sometimes. I was also in touch with a few recruiters who put me forward for roles. I had the odd interview here and there, but never really had much luck.

    What’s your best advice for job seekers registered on the Hired platform? 

    Try to fill in as much of your profile with relevant information as you can. This will give you the best possible chance and make you stand out from others. Also, make sure you’re responsive. It will show recruiters you’re active on the platform.

    Related: Want More Interviews and Better Matches? 8 Key Tips!

    What would you tell someone who’s curious about Hired?

    Go for it! I was fortunate in that the first company that got in touch for an interview ended up being the one I joined. If you haven’t had much luck with your job search, give Hired a try. The same could happen to you so what do you have to lose?

    Any general advice you’d like to give other tech professionals?

    Try not to compare yourself to others. Focus on being the best you can be and always try to improve. At the same time, remember to take a break and enjoy life. 

    About JPMorgan

    JPMorgan is a leader in investment banking, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. Founded in 1858, JPMorgan has 5000+ employees and is headquartered in New York.


    401K plan/matching, stock options, health/dental/vision/life/disability insurance, paid time off, flexible working hours, tuition reimbursement, management training, mentorship opportunities, and more.

    Tech Stack

    JavaScript, Java, Python, MongoDB, Cassandra, Kafka, Hadoop, NoSQL, Access, Microsoft SQL Server, ASP.NET, Spark, C#, jQuery, Splunk, Cloud Foundry, MySQL, Ember.js, Spring, C++, Scala, React, Promtheus, Azure, DB2, Oracle, TensorFlow, SQL, Grafana, Kubernetes, MariaDB, AngularJS, Node.JS, .NET, Swift, Dynatrace, AWS, DevOps, Big Data, Mobile, Natural Language Processing (NLP) More

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    Where Do Engineer Salaries Pay the Best (Highest) Standard of Living?

    Opportunity shifts from higher cost-of-living markets

    The rise in remote work prompted engineers and other tech workers to move, freeing many from higher cost-of-living (CoL) markets. Because an engineer’s salary goes farther in lower cost-of-living markets, tech workers are reconsidering where to live. 

    Hired data in the 2023 State of Tech Salaries showed positions based in higher CoL cities continued to decline from 78% in 2020 to 59% in the first half of 2023. Unsurprisingly, San Francisco (one of the priciest markets to live in) saw the biggest decline change. Positions based there were cut in half. They dropped from 38% in 2020 to 19% in the first half of 2023.

    Medium CoL markets gained the most, expanding from 20% of positions in 2020 to 32% in the first half of 2023. Lower CoL markets increased from 2% in 2020 to 9% in the first half of 2023. While mid-market’s growth of 12% is higher, it’s worth nothing lower CoL markets more than quadrupled their previous percentage.

    Average software engineer salary offers

    Here’s the list of average salary offers made to software engineers on the Hired platform in 2023 (compared to 2022):

    SF Bay Area: $186,629 (up 4%)

    San Diego: $174,643 (up 20%)

    Seattle: $171,314 (up 1%)

    Los Angeles: $162,471 (up 2.5%)

    New York: $159,847 (down 1%)

    Boston: $156,510 (up 1%)

    Washington DC: $153,412 (up 1%)

    Austin: $150,246 (down 5%)

    Denver: $149,883 (up 0%)

    Philadelphia: $144,911 (down 0%)

    Dallas/Ft Worth: $139,742 (down 4%)

    Chicago: $138,795 (down 2%)

    Atlanta: $135,240 (down 8.5%)

    Houston: $134,711 (down 8.5%)

    Tampa: $129,323 (down 10%)

    Columbus: $128,854 (down 2%)

    The draw of lower cost-of-living markets 

    While it’s useful to compare top offers in top cities, these average offer numbers are most compelling in the context of actual living expenses. For instance, what does a salary of $149,000 actually get you in Atlanta? And what would you need to earn in San Francisco dollars to maintain the same standard of living? This is where it gets really interesting.

    After the CoL adjustment, most major metros offer more than their counterparts in San Francisco and New York City.

    When you compare city-specific salary offer data with the actual cost of living in San Francisco, surprising winners emerge. Namely: Houston, Atlanta, Philadelphia, and Phoenix where tech professionals are offered an average of $40K more than those in San Francisco. Unfortunately, New York is the only place where adjusted tech salaries are less than in San Francisco. 

    These adjusted salaries tell us a few things about the cost of living in each city, and where salaries might help you afford more in one city than another. 

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    Average software engineer salary offers — in SF dollars

    Houston: $228,000

    Atlanta: $227,000

    Philadelphia: $223,000

    Phoenix: $218,000

    Denver: $217,000

    Austin: $210,000

    Dallas/Ft Worth: $209,000

    Chicago: $201,000

    Los Angeles: $199,000

    Seattle: $196,000

    San Diego: $195,000

    Tampa: $193,000

    Boston: $191,000

    Washington DC: $190,000

    New York: $156,000

    [Tweet “TL;DR: Let’s all move to Houston.”]

    In all seriousness, these adjusted salaries tell us a few things about the cost of living in each city, and where salaries might help you afford more in one city than in other cities. (Read how C2ER’s Cost of Living Index is calculated here). 

    Here’s a breakdown of average salary offers, average/median living expenses, and other metrics that might affect your quality of life, by some example cities:


    Average software engineer salary offer: $137,000

    Average monthly rent for a 1 bedroom apartment: $1,087

    Median home price: $370,650


    Average software engineer salary offer: $149,000

    Average monthly rent for a 1 bedroom apartment: $1,507

    Median home price: $485,182


    Average software engineer salary offer: $151,000

    Average monthly rent for a 1 bedroom apartment: $1,138

    Median home price: $450,913


    Average software engineer salary offer: $140,000

    Average monthly rent for a 1 bedroom apartment: $1,179

    Median home price: $559,132

    Sources: Apartment List, PayScale

    Originally published in September 2016 by Whitney Ricketts. Updated by Hired Content Team September 2023. More