Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Should Younger Developers Be Paid More?

Helpful Dilbert: Asok's Sweeney Todd LessonImage by Eexlebots via Flickr
Should Younger Developers Be Paid More?: "jammag writes "A project manager describes facing an upset senior developer who learned that a new hire — a fresh college grad — would be making 30 percent more than him. The reason: the new grad knew a hot emerging technology that a client wanted. Yes, the senior coder was majorly pissed off. But with the constant upheaval in new technology, this situation is almost unavoidable — or is it? And at any rate, is it fair?"
Sorry buddy, this is why you never want to know what others are making within your company. What you do want to know is how your salary places within the median for your locality for your field. If you are at the median or above, STFU and keep a low profile.

If you are under the median, then you are underpaid. You will need to decide what to do about it, be it ask for a raise, make a move for a promotion or get a job elsewhere. What the other guy makes plays nothing into this.

Recruiting is affected by supply and demand. There is a reason why the n00b was hired, and one of these is that the upset senior developer (USD) can't do whatever the new warm body (NWB) can do. I can tell you right now that nobody in his right mind in a for profit is going to hire even one more NWB than needed because it simply hurts the bottom line. Either NWBs are brought in as needed, or USDs are pushed out in favor of the NWBs.

The USD is also showing a painful disconnect with the monetary realities of writing code for profit. Notice that the NWB was brought in because he is bringing a new tech that a client wanted. That is code for more revenue. The NWB, even at a 30% premium over the USD, is going to bring revenue into the company that would not be possible with just the USD since he doesn't know the new tech.

It is not about fair, it is not about entitlement, it is just business. Now, if the NWB gets paid 30% more and he is a fucktard, then by all means raise hell.