PDA

View Full Version : A programmer's salary



MedivhX
January 8th, 2007, 02:22 PM
So how much bucksa a month/year is it in the country where you live??? I was searching on the net a bit and found it that is is $50000 in US??? This seems so non-logical especially when I saw that a cardiologist has a $150000 salary!!!](*,)

johnnymac
January 8th, 2007, 02:37 PM
It depends on your skill set. $50,000 is about what I made coming out of school....several years ago - so it truly depends on what kind of work you do and how current you keep your skill-set.

meng
January 8th, 2007, 02:47 PM
So how much bucksa a month/year is it in the country where you live??? I was searching on the net a bit and found it that is is $50000 in US??? This seems so non-logical especially when I saw that a cardiologist has a $150000 salary!!!](*,)
Are you saying that the programmer does not earn enough compared to the cardiologist? I'm not suggesting that the cardiologist is more deserving, but you do have to recognize that he/she will have been training for at least 15 years to qualify as a cardiologist, and by that time has accumulated massive student loans and still has to pay obscene premiums for malpractice insurance. The average programmer is nowhere near as encumbered as the average medico.

null0
January 8th, 2007, 02:56 PM
It depends on your skill set. $50,000 is about what I made coming out of school....several years ago - so it truly depends on what kind of work you do and how current you keep your skill-set.
by $50,000 you mean Fifty Thousand Dolars??????? omfg :shock: i hope thats a year, not a month lol. that'd make +/- 5000 a month.
In my country you're lucky if you get 1500 month (yea as in Fifteen HUNDRED)

MedivhX
January 8th, 2007, 02:59 PM
LOL! Of course I mean a year... In my country you're lucky if you have €400 a month...

Dygear
January 8th, 2007, 03:12 PM
I'm a PHP Programmer here, no degree but, lots of knowledge. I make around 300 a week, or 1200 a month. So about 14400 a year. I'm in NY, USA. I also do installer's in NSIS, and C/C#/C++ work, plus web design work.

MedivhX
January 8th, 2007, 03:38 PM
WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT??! Only 1200 a month in USA??!

Dygear
January 8th, 2007, 03:48 PM
Yeah, no degree, and I'm fresh from high school. So it makes some sense. I should go for that Zend Cert and make him give me more money :).

johnnymac
January 8th, 2007, 04:05 PM
Good...grief! When I was consulting I was making about 125 p/hr......In the US - no degree...companies aren't very nice to you...

null0
January 8th, 2007, 04:05 PM
LOL! Of course I mean a year... In my country you're lucky if you have 400 a month...heh we must be compatriots

MedivhX
January 8th, 2007, 04:23 PM
LOL! Yeah... But programmers have 400-800 euros... For now it is one of the most well payed jobs in Serbia. But almost all other jobs are maximum €500 per month.

skeeterbug
January 8th, 2007, 08:51 PM
I'm a PHP Programmer here, no degree but, lots of knowledge. I make around 300 a week, or 1200 a month. So about 14400 a year. I'm in NY, USA. I also do installer's in NSIS, and C/C#/C++ work, plus web design work.

You are getting ripped off. I started out around 34,000 a year coming out of highschool. Although I did a tech school for 2 years in programming. Either way, look for a different job man.

Isoss
January 8th, 2007, 09:39 PM
I searched a lot online for programmers salaries, I found that it varies considerably between countries! in my country applied for a small company as a PHP programmer (No degree) and they offered me $200 dollars a month and I was like what the!

Now I own my own single business, my capital is my laptop and I make websites for people I know .. I get templates from the web for free or buy them ... now I have just finished programming a website for a PC hardware company for $800 .. although I ordered $1200 but it was too much for the customer but I accepted anyway cuz I need to work and here you can't simply find a good job in programming.

Oneday I ment an australian programmer who works at a university in his country and he went online and logged in to his university's account and showed me the salaries for PHP programmers and I was shocked when I read that they earn between $30,000 and $80,000 depending on the programmer's skills and degree! but for me even if I get the least that would make me live as a king in my country!!! God have mercy on my country's programmers!

MedivhX
January 8th, 2007, 10:03 PM
Yeah, I heard that in Australia programmers' earnings are $100 PER HOUR!!! But that seems impossible... I mean if you work 8 hours every day, u will automatically have $800 that day??? I don't believe it... But $80000 per year is still logical for some (but that's not very logical for me, in whose country the GDP is only $4000 (compare that with USA whose GDP is $43555))

Tomosaur
January 8th, 2007, 10:20 PM
It really just depends what you do. If you're designing missile guidance systems or life support systems for rockets, then it's not hard to imagine such salaries. It really is just a case of what you do.

jblebrun
January 8th, 2007, 10:22 PM
Yeah, I heard that in Australia programmers' earnings are $100 PER HOUR!!! But that seems impossible... I mean if you work 8 hours every day, u will automatically have $800 that day??? I don't believe it... But $80000 per year is still logical for some (but that's not very logical for me, in whose country the GDP is only $4000 (compare that with USA whose GDP is $43555))

$100/hr is a reasonable rate for a consultant. A consultant will have lots of additional overhead, like accounting, health care, retirement investments, and consulting firm fees. 100/hr comes out to 200k a year... of about 150k US dollars. Still on the high side, but not unreasonably so.

Note360
January 8th, 2007, 11:06 PM
Wow, awsome. I am looking into going into Programming or IT out of college. However I am only 14 now. For a 14 year old I think I am doing good. I am mostly doing web design now, but I haven't let it hold me back. So far, I have knowledge in PHP, Perl (I forgot most of it though), Ruby, Python, C, C#, Nemerle, C++ and Java. Though I am only effective in PHP, Ruby, Python and maybe Java or C# (I don't like C++). The reason I concentrate on Web Development is because I have a friend who likes graphic design and web development so we kinda help each other out. We are opening up a nice little freelance web dev company called Broken Code. (zephyrwood.org/brokencode).

Actually, I wouldn't mind moving to Australia or England/Ireland, if I can find better pay (I am in the US though) though it really depends on how I feel. Oh, by the way how does the California Colledge thing work, I heard you can get cheaper if you are a California resident. (mom has friend in California so we coudl works omethign out). Most likely I will try to go some where in Upstate NY, NYU, Hofstra, or something more local.

lloyd mcclendon
January 8th, 2007, 11:48 PM
$1500 every 2 weeks right out of college. not that bad, not that great, but i actually like going to work and using my brain the way i have to. you could pay me 1/2 of that and i'd probably still be happy as long as i get to do what i do best.

pmasiar
January 9th, 2007, 04:47 AM
About the top of the payscale: When the dot-com boom wave has the highest around 1998-1999 I worked for a headhunter - IT recruiting agaency in Silicon Valley. Recruiter gets 3-4 months of the salary of the worker you found (that was the rule then, not sure now), but it was hard to find decent people. The best position we were trying to fill was one real expert in SAP. He got two offers for 600K/year each(300/hour), he picked the one which also gave him free hotel accomadation and free account in hotel bar. Sadly, it was the other company, not ours.

$300/hour is still not that much - top lawyers on investor bankers make much more.

Not sure if such excess takes place anymore - I do hope not, it is abomination - but it was possible in golden days just before dot-com bust.

But to get top money you need to have good education, communication skills and business sense. If you are head-down coder who cares about the raw speed of some library call - good for you, but you are not on top of pay scale until you feel in your bones that most important speed of any computer product is speed to market. It is exactly because hour of programmer's time is so expensive you need to focus on producing the solution for least amount of your time - computers are cheap.

kinson
January 9th, 2007, 06:06 AM
Living and working in Malaysia now. Fresh grad, earning about 600USD/month, which is considered high for a fresh grad. Me friend's are earning about USD420~470/month.

We should work overseas :p

Dygear
January 9th, 2007, 06:18 AM
Well, I think I'm going to be sending my employer this thread. I fell a renegotiating coming on.

kinson
January 9th, 2007, 06:26 AM
Well, I think I'm going to be sending my employer this thread. I fell a renegotiating coming on.

Lol, do tell us the outcome of that :p careful not to step on the wrong toes though :p

Grey
January 9th, 2007, 10:40 AM
I have a B.Sc. in Computer Science. I make less now than I did when I flipped burgers at A&W. I've made an astounding $1200 (gross) in 3 months (with $900 of it still outstanding). That comes to about $400 per month. I've written somewhere in the vicinity of 5000 lines of code in C++. (I haven't actually counted). I've worked on it night and day for weeks and weeks, with little break.

But I am honestly not complaining, other than to say that I get hungry sometimes. I would be starving to death if not for the absolute kindness of my uneducated girlfriend supporting me. My cell phone has been disconnected, and credit card debts are looming over my head like a plague.

The reason I am not complaining? I work as a video game developer. I would do this job for free. The project I am working on is my first job in the industry, and my first REAL job out of University, and the second in my field. This project has gone way behind schedule, and I was supposed to be done it two months ago. (basically, there's been some problems, where nobody is really at fault). It was a chance for me to prove I could do the work, with a token payment. I have no doubt that if I am hired on for a bigger project, I will be making closer to what the others in this thread are making. But right now, I am content with table scraps.


My previous job in my field was as a student web programmer for a large corporation. Basically, an internship. I worked there for a year, and I made about $25,000. If I had agreed to come back after I graduated, I believe that I would have gotten a signing bonus of $50,000, plus a paycheque around 3 or 4 times as much as I made when I was a student. I have no wish to return though. I would rather be a hungry game programmer than a rich web programmer. =)

amo-ej1
January 9th, 2007, 01:13 PM
In Belgium, with a (Masters) degree you'll get between 2000 and 2500 euro (gross) a month which results in 1300-1700 net. Fresh out of university that is. And all sorts of benefits, like health insurance, pension plan, ... some even get a company car but that depends on the company.

MedivhX
January 9th, 2007, 01:20 PM
In Belgium, with a (Masters) degree you'll get between 2000 and 2500 euro (gross) a month which results in 1300-1700 net. Fresh out of university that is. And all sorts of benefits, like health insurance, pension plan, ... some even get a company car but that depends on the company.

What, what, what???!!! You can get Master diploma for 3 or 4 years (not exacty sure, at least it's like that in Bologne declaration)!!!

amo-ej1
January 9th, 2007, 02:23 PM
Hmmz, i don't get your point ....

Master's takes 4-5 years belgium

MedivhX
January 9th, 2007, 02:45 PM
Well, my point was, that you don't really need to studyfor a very long time for a salary like that. I'm not sure how long it takes here but I think that it is 4 years.

Houman
January 9th, 2007, 03:10 PM
Hi there;

I think one thing you have to keep in mind is that a company that pays more is not necessarily the job that you should go for. I used to work for a big company during the summer (a huge company that I'm sure y'all know about) and I was offered a huge salary. I took the job and I worked there for 4 months, It was the most awful experience of my life. I would be forced to work on weekends, at night. Once my boss didn't even let me go to lunch until I finished something. When my contract finished, instead of applying for a permanent position I got the hell out of there and went back to grad school.

Looking back, I think I will take a job with a 1200 bucks a month salary over my previous job (which paid alot more) anytime, as long as the job is interesting and you learn something everyday and management is respectful and takes employee relations seriously. At the end, the most important thing is that you enjoy your work, because all the money in the world wont make up for a bad employee who treats you like crap.

I know some hardware people at my old company who get paid around 100K a year. They are the saddest bunch you'll see, they are all around 30, but look way older. I wouldn't want that, hek I wouldn't even know what to do with so much money, I rather have time to spend with my family than a 100K a year.

(but to answer your question :P in Canada a new programmer out of college gets from 45-55K a year, depending on how good he is and which university he came from)

regards

Houman

Wight_Rhino
January 9th, 2007, 03:17 PM
$1500 every 2 weeks right out of college. not that bad, not that great, but i actually like going to work and using my brain the way i have to. you could pay me 1/2 of that and i'd probably still be happy as long as i get to do what i do best.


Dude, you've found the secret of life! Loving what you do for a Living. That's a definite rarity.

Congratulations!:D

supirman
January 9th, 2007, 03:50 PM
Well, the university I received my Master's degree from marks the average starting salary for a bachelor's degree as $53,000 US/year and the average for a Master's as $62,000/year. The school where I received my bachelor's ... most kids have a hard time finding a job. It's not the education, but the economy of the surrounding area that is horrible. I know some top tier students that took jobs for $35-$40,000/year, which I thought was absurd.

I'm expecting to be upwards of the $90,000/year mark in the next year or two. If you have skills, don't work for peanuts.

pauwl
January 9th, 2007, 11:13 PM
Before everyone gets too exited: compare the cost of a loaf of bread and a litre of petrol (1 Gallon is 4.2 litres I think for those not on metric yet).

1 litre op petrol in France costs you about 1.2 Euros = $1.5 per litre. So that's over $6 per gallon.
a French baguette (long thin loaf) costs about $1.10 at the baker's place.

Taking a taxi anywhere (5km?) will cost upwards of $25.

So whilst you might get paid less in Malaysia, consider the price of a taxi ride, litre of petrol, or even just the cold European weather, and enjoy where you live a bit more.

:-k

MedivhX
January 9th, 2007, 11:21 PM
Well, as for fuel, it's price is almost same everywhere. In Serbia it is €1 per litre. Bread is €0.25, but 0.33 l of Coca-Cola is €0.75 and up (depending on the store where you're buying, it may soun weird to you, but in Serbia, prices vary from store to store).

pmasiar
January 10th, 2007, 01:58 AM
Cheapest gas is in Iraq (it is subsidized, but you don't wanna go to buy it :evil: ) and in USA (lowest tax), gallon = 3.8L for about $2.5. But you need to consider not only food and gas: health insurance, car insurenace, rent - living in USA is not cheap.

kinson
January 10th, 2007, 02:07 AM
So whilst you might get paid less in Malaysia, consider the price of a taxi ride, litre of petrol, or even just the cold European weather, and enjoy where you live a bit more.

:-k

Yup yup. I love living in Malaysia, what with the piracy, government corruption, bribery, but it makes for a fun and interesting life :D I'm happy here, I wouldn't want to go anywhere else to live permanantly at the moment. For a holiday or a stint, yeah, but i still wanna stay here :) (Honest, I'm not being sarcastic :mrgreen: )


Cheers,
Kinson

gbutler69
January 10th, 2007, 03:33 AM
I feel a little guilty. I have no college degree, am entirely self-taught, and I make $92,500.00 per year in the U.S. (in Ohio of all places -- not the highest Cost-of-Living for U.S.) How do I do it? I've never asked for a raise. Never begged for a job. I learn constantly and work hard. I'm 35 and I feel like 50. Is it worth it? NO, absolutely not. I'm trying to slooooow down and start taking things easier.

I come from a long line of dirt-poor coal-miners from the Appalachians (aka Hillbillies). I left home at 18 with nothing but the clothes on my back and have never looked back. Fortunately, in the U.S., one can still pull themselves up by the bootstraps if one so desires.

It's why highly motivated immigrants do so well here. If you're a failure in the U.S., then you are simply a failure. Of course, I think that mostly applies anywhere.

EDIT:

Does anyone know the secret of happiness? I can guarantee you, money isn't it. I'd give just about anything to be happy. Instead, I'm constantly looking for the next thing to do. I'd like, just once, to do something great! But, I guess, some of us just don't have it in 'em. :(

Wybiral
January 10th, 2007, 03:43 AM
Hey, I live in Ohio too... Except I don't have a $92,500 job. I'm currently looking for a job actually, you should put in a good word, lol.

supirman
January 10th, 2007, 04:08 AM
Wow, I'm in Ohio too...

I'm likely to relocate to Pittsburgh in the next year or two since there seem to be many more embedded system jobs over there. Not to mention, that's closer to home (Youngstown) than where we're currently (Columbus).

supirman
January 10th, 2007, 04:14 AM
Also, I figure I should mention:
I work 8-9 hours per day, usually 7-4ish. This is my first job, and I've been working for about a year. I finished my Master's degree in electrical/computer engineering in December '05. I absolutely love the flexible work hours, the type of work (everything from bootloaders for custom hardware platforms, linux kernel modifications, device drivers for custom hardware, c++ applications, some python, build system mods, etc, etc), the people I work with are great, and the pay is good. I figure I'll stay here a few years to gain experience and learn, learn, learn.

My advice: choose your jobs wisely. I love embedded systems, low level code like device drivers and bootloaders, etc. I had an opportunity when I was job hunting to start at 10% higher initial salary, but it was doing graphics work. That really didn't sound like I'd enjoy it one bit. I chose the smaller of the salaries, but I love my work. Since I love what I do, I put 100% effort into it and was promoted after 6 months, so now I'm making just as much anyway.

Wybiral
January 10th, 2007, 04:29 AM
How does someone without a college degree get started? I love programming... I love solving problems, learning new things... I love low level machine code and assembly, and I love higher level stuff like c++ and python.

Only one catch... I don't have the money to go to college and pay for my apartment and food... etc...

So if it's possible without a degree, I'd love to know how. Especially since that would give me the money to get a degree and actually start doing more of the stuff I want to do.

I'm not worried about time/money, even a crappy programming job would look better than nothing on my resume for later job hunts.

Also, all of my programming has been by myself (or with a maximum of 3 other people) and none of it has been for profit. If anyone can let me in on what professional programming is like and how things are handled, please do.

Thanks.

pmasiar
January 10th, 2007, 05:45 AM
How does someone without a college degree get started?

Only one catch... I don't have the money to go to college and pay for my apartment and food... etc...

I'm not worried about time/money, even a crappy programming job would look better than nothing on my resume for later job hunts.

Also, all of my programming has been by myself (or with a maximum of 3 other people) and none of it has been for profit. If anyone can let me in on what professional programming is like and how things are handled,

It was *much* easier to get started without a degree 10-15 years ago, in the middle of dot-com boom. If you had pulse and can spell HTML, you got hired :-)

I doubt that craze will ever repeat - current craze is outsourcing to India, China and Russia.

You have couple options now: Local Community College can give you intro classes pretty cheap. They usually have certification bundles. If you have decent grades, credits should be transferable to regional state university. Bad news, they have no clue and usually teach java. :-(

MIT posted some courses online, you can learn, but no credits. Yeah, you wish, MIT credits for free :-) There are many other online universities.

Another option is O'Reilly courses, also with certification. They look decent for beginner, especially if that is your only "formal" education, and they are online and cheap. I tried only one: Java programming. They have policy 7-day money back guarantee. I started, looked up through the lessons and realized they are too trivial for me, and cancelled with no problem. If you stay, with each course comes relevant O'Reilly book, and personal emails from your tutor. So you may go and try it, you have nothing to lose (only time).

You can get work experience by volunteering in some local nonprofit. Everybody needs computer network. Or try asking in local LUG (Linux User group). You can start as volunteer and when they get funding, and they are sure you are useful you may get hired. If you have some state college around, you may try to go volunteer there. When you learn to do something they need, they may hire you part time, which might give you right to go to free classes.

Another way to gain work experience and merit points is: join some successful open source project. Something widely used and useful, like TRAC or moinmoin or TurboGears something. Once you became expert, you have credibility to get hired in a company which may want to use it. And sometimes jobs are posted right there - where experts are. Or start local open-source user group for your project. But don't start new project - chances are, it never will become important. You are better of hopping onto running train that try to start moving your own ;-)

I know all this is slow. Hope someone has better, faster ideas :-)

Wybiral
January 10th, 2007, 06:12 AM
Thanks pmasiar, you've been a pretty helpful guy (I think) around here. I'll probably check out some of the colleges around here and look for volunteer work.

I'll also look into the O'Reilly courses (I own a number of their books, good stuff)

I guess any job in that direction right now will do, I just want to get my foot in the door. No crappy programming job can beat some of my previous jobs (from systems monitoring at a retail store, to making pizzas at a fast food restaurant... To stocking shelfs)

I really don't want to face the inevitable fact that I might need to take out a student loan...
But until then I am trying to do everything I can to avoid that and just try to get enough small stuff to make a pretty resume out of.

If anyone else has some advice, I'd love to hear it... I have good HTML/Javascript experience... I'm prolific with C and C++, decent level knowledge of assembly, and pretty good experience with python/ruby... I've even programmed in pascal and lisp (although I prefer not to). I'm also experienced with 3d math and data encryption.

Just no REAL experience or degree's...

Grey
January 10th, 2007, 06:50 AM
Do something that gets you noticed.

http://grey.drunkencoders.com

That's my personal website, and a makeshift repository for my personal projects. It doesn't look like much. But it got me a job. I don't make a lot of money, but it's doing something that I love doing (read my post about it on page 3). It's MY foot in the door.

I got a bit of widespread recognition online when I wrote an internet radio client for my Nintendo DS. This was within 2 weeks of the first alpha version of the homebrew wifi library for NDS. It got the attention of a real game developer, and a month or so later, I had an offer for contract work sitting in my email inbox.

Since then, I've gotten a real devkit (it's sitting right beside me right now), and I am happily coding away on something that might see the light of day on retail shelves. I also wish to note that this was about 2 months before I actually received my degree in the mail.

That's really my advice. Do something that a prospective employer can say "WOW!" about. There are many branches of computer science. I always wanted to be a game programmer. So I strove to beef up my game development skills as much as I could. If you are interested in web development, then write some very cool web stuff. Write something that nobody has ever thought of before.

Faolan84
January 10th, 2007, 06:56 AM
My bad job story:
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=214642&cid=17440808

'Nuff said... I've had some bad time and still going through bad times. Learning, even self-education, is the only way i'm going to get out of this. That's why I have dedicated myself to learning as much as I can and soon (within a few days and a couple weeks at most) I will be releasing my first software work. It is written in C and uses GTK+. It's not complicated but it contains the couple months of research, practice, patience, perseverance, and hard work.

You should never give up on what you want to do. I want to one day run my own business that handle system admin for small to medium sized businesses and open source solutions to individual customers too. Maybe do some web design and coding too. In the meantime I'm just going to try to get a job at Target or McDonald's and hope I don't has another misfortune of getting stuck having to work around the "Bubba System."

pmasiar
January 10th, 2007, 02:46 PM
Faolan, I read your story. Advice when applying for another job: explain them that you went through hard period of your life (death in family) and got fired on bad terms, so previous job is not good reference. But you are all right now. If you are adventurous and have friendly lawyer, you may arrange someone to call prievious job and ask for reference - there are limits in the US laws how much dirt then can dump about you, if they exceed law limits you may sue them. :evil: Some lawyers may work for you for free - and part (50%?) of the penalty you may get awarded. Ask them. Might help if more abused people like you joined your suit. Ask them.

And for sure get some volunteer position with some nice people, like local church or something. Nonprofit people have to be very nice - especially bosses :-) You cannot play a55hole boss with volunteers for long, see? Do something for them, and have good reference too. Break the chain of bad luck. And keep that girlfriend - be there for her as she was for you. :-)

Grey: game industry is known to underpay, overwork and abuse coders. It does not hurt bosses to abuse people untill they quit, because so many new coders are coming in, willing to work for peanuts or free like you. I wish you good luck!

megamania
January 10th, 2007, 03:26 PM
EDIT:

Does anyone know the secret of happiness? I can guarantee you, money isn't it. I'd give just about anything to be happy. Instead, I'm constantly looking for the next thing to do. I'd like, just once, to do something great! But, I guess, some of us just don't have it in 'em. :(

I think this thread I just started could be related to your thoughts in a way, because I believe happiness heavily depends on the relationships you manage to create...

http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=335335

Sasa_Ivanovic
January 10th, 2007, 06:16 PM
LOL! Of course I mean a year... In my country you're lucky if you have 400 a month...
Very lucky.

PS : Republika Srpska

MedivhX
January 11th, 2007, 07:41 PM
LOL! Yeah....

Srbija

Flubs4u
January 13th, 2007, 05:01 AM
My first job out of undergrad pays US $27,000 a year. I graduated with a degree in Information Systems which, just incase anyone doesn't know, is like programming with leadership skills thrown in. There are guys I graduated with making as much as $60,000 a year. That being said I think I am probably a lot happier at my job than those guys. There's not a lot of pressure where I work and most of my days are really layed back. My only frustration is that my employer works with some really old technologies (We run our main database on a VMS server) and that really limits the usefullness of what I do in terms of getting me my next job.

supirman
January 13th, 2007, 01:03 PM
My first job out of undergrad pays US $27,000 a year. ... There are guys I graduated with making as much as $60,000 a year. That being said I think I am probably a lot happier at my job than those guys. ...

My first job pays me over $60,000 per year, and I couldn't see anybody else being happier than I am with my position. The pay being higher really doesn't have any direct correlation to being less happy. Not only are the people I work with great (funny, smartasses, and smart), but the problems I get to work on are relevant to today's technology and is setting me up for a great future career path. My hours are mostly like this: work 40-45 hours/week, come in when you want, leave when you want, and just get your work done. If I only made 27,000/year, I wouldn't be able to afford my house, my decent vehicle, my wife's vehicle, and anything else that we enjoy in life. And we still have enough to put away money into my 401k each check and upwards of 1,000/month into a savings account for now. My wife works too, she makes 25,000 with no degree. She works at a bank. Seriously, 27,000 seems to me that the degree was pointless since you can make that without a degree. My .02.

Flubs4u
January 13th, 2007, 04:34 PM
My first job pays me over $60,000 per year, and I couldn't see anybody else being happier than I am with my position. The pay being higher really doesn't have any direct correlation to being less happy. Not only are the people I work with great (funny, smartasses, and smart), but the problems I get to work on are relevant to today's technology and is setting me up for a great future career path. My hours are mostly like this: work 40-45 hours/week, come in when you want, leave when you want, and just get your work done. If I only made 27,000/year, I wouldn't be able to afford my house, my decent vehicle, my wife's vehicle, and anything else that we enjoy in life. And we still have enough to put away money into my 401k each check and upwards of 1,000/month into a savings account for now. My wife works too, she makes 25,000 with no degree. She works at a bank. Seriously, 27,000 seems to me that the degree was pointless since you can make that without a degree. My .02.

What part of the country are you working in? I'm in Nashville, TN and honestly when I graduated $27k was the best I could find. I'm not saying that higher pay necisarily means worse conditions. What I'm saying is that I'm still at this job (knowing the pay is so far below par) because the conditions are so relaxed. Something else to think about; $27k is a lot of money for someone who's previously highest paying job was working at a computer repair place part time for $7.50 an hour. It's all very relative.

supirman
January 13th, 2007, 05:12 PM
What part of the country are you working in? I'm in Nashville, TN and honestly when I graduated $27k was the best I could find. I'm not saying that higher pay necisarily means worse conditions. What I'm saying is that I'm still at this job (knowing the pay is so far below par) because the conditions are so relaxed. Something else to think about; $27k is a lot of money for someone who's previously highest paying job was working at a computer repair place part time for $7.50 an hour. It's all very relative.

I'm in central Ohio, where living is cheap. Of course, there are expensive suburbs around where you'll find lots of million dollar mansions and such, but where I'm at, a bit out in the country, you can get a nice house for $100/sq ft or so. According to CNN cost of living calculator, you'd need to make 29,000 here to have the same lifestyle. I don't know what types of jobs are available for IS grads, but I'd certainly hope there was more than a 27,000 offer somewhere!

Flubs4u
January 13th, 2007, 08:06 PM
I'm in central Ohio, where living is cheap. Of course, there are expensive suburbs around where you'll find lots of million dollar mansions and such, but where I'm at, a bit out in the country, you can get a nice house for $100/sq ft or so. According to CNN cost of living calculator, you'd need to make 29,000 here to have the same lifestyle. I don't know what types of jobs are available for IS grads, but I'd certainly hope there was more than a 27,000 offer somewhere!

Somewhere yes, but my wife was still in school at the time, so I was tied to the area..

supirman
January 13th, 2007, 09:08 PM
I wasn't trying to mean or disrespectful, I just feel that you should only work for peanuts if you're an elephant ;)

Flubs4u
January 14th, 2007, 12:04 AM
No offense taken. I wasn't trying to be beligerant either, please forgive any offense on my part.

auroraborealis
January 15th, 2007, 01:26 AM
I'm at Carnegie Mellon doing my M.S. The statistics for last year's graduating class was an average $80k starting salary (range was $65k-90k, not including bonuses) with everyone finding a job except 1 person.

Too bad I'm going on for my PhD where I'll be getting 1/4 of that if I'm lucky.

Avenue
January 17th, 2007, 01:06 AM
How does someone without a college degree get started? I love programming... I love solving problems, learning new things... I love low level machine code and assembly, and I love higher level stuff like c++ and python.

Only one catch... I don't have the money to go to college and pay for my apartment and food... etc...

So if it's possible without a degree, I'd love to know how. Especially since that would give me the money to get a degree and actually start doing more of the stuff I want to do.

I'm not worried about time/money, even a crappy programming job would look better than nothing on my resume for later job hunts.

Also, all of my programming has been by myself (or with a maximum of 3 other people) and none of it has been for profit. If anyone can let me in on what professional programming is like and how things are handled, please do.

Thanks.


I'm new to programming within the last two years or so, mostly self-taught starting with BASIC and HTML/CSS. I enrolled in a C# Testing certification course at a community college and learned the basics, but had to read books to really "get it" after I finished. I had a tough time during interviews relating to SDET or jr. dev positions so I changed my direction.

My main background is in sales/marketing, so I started doing contract work that combined my marketing skills with my new-found programming knowledge...business analyst, tech marketing, etc. I have contracting firms all over me, and i've been contracting at Microsoft corporate for over a year now (Bill doesn't want to seem to hire me...).

My point with all of this is that i've come across a lot of people who get on-the-job experience through contracting agencies. I've discovered that a lot of entry-level contractors can make more money and I myself am paid in the area of $40/hour to do what I do. Keep in mind this is a new direction for me and i've only been doing it for a year. It seems to be all about knowledge and less about university education here in Seattle, show them how much you know and understand about what it is you are trying to do and you'll find someone who will hire you.

Check into contracting if you are trying to get started as it's a good way to go.

Wybiral
January 17th, 2007, 01:28 AM
Thanks, I appreciate the advice. But I have a decent deal of experience with programming... And 0 with contracting. I just can't see a company wanting to hire me considering I know squat about it.

How did you get your first contracting job with little certification?

I would be willing to do something like that as a means of generating the money to continue college.

pmasiar
January 17th, 2007, 03:36 AM
I'm new to programming (...)My main background is in sales/marketing, so I started doing contract work that combined my marketing skills with my new-found programming knowledge...business analyst, tech marketing,(...) lot of people who get on-the-job experience through contracting agencies. (...) It seems to be all about knowledge and less about university education.


I have a decent deal of experience with programming... And 0 with contracting. I just can't see a company wanting to hire me considering I know squat about it..

That's exactly the point. Avenue knows how to sell, how to talk to customers. How to evaluate what problems they have, make them comfortable he knows what they want and what he can solve for them.

Avenue, maybe you can advise Wybiral how to get into sales/marketing to gain people skills? You cannot be a successful contractor without people skills. They are at least as important as technical skills, and programmers are known to overestimate technical skills and underestimate people skills.

randomnumber
January 19th, 2007, 06:26 AM
I think other things need to be considered, example: cost of living. Some of the pay described is what you can make working at McDonalds here. Perhaps I am wrong and I am missing some foreign currency symbols. Min wage in this country is going to be over 7$ per hour. Min wage is not really considered enough to support one self in this country (USA).

Americans tend to work 40 hours/week with only a week of vacation a year.

I live in what is considered to be a low pay area(FL panhandle, Near AL). Many of the beginning salaries are +40,000 /year. That is with a degree. If you want more money you move to another area. The area is growing in tech fields but it still is small. I guess you would consider this area to be retirement area. All the old people come here and they are not to interested in Tech.

BTW, Even thought the pay is low here the weather can not be beat. It is 50 degrees F and that is considered cold. The summers are a little brutal but if you are working inside there is AC. I think the only thing you have to worry about in this area for weather is hurricanes. Ivan was pretty bad, we had 4ft of water in our house.

Null Reference Exception
January 27th, 2007, 03:10 PM
Yeah, I heard that in Australia programmers' earnings are $100 PER HOUR!!! But that seems impossible...

It is possible to earn that much on contract. Rates will also vary depending on state/city, with places like Sydney and Melbourne generally being slightly higher. Fresh graduates would never get that amount and from what I see are less likely to get these positions as they tend to require very specific skills, for example commercial Sharepoint and ASP.NET development experience. Fresh grads generally get 35k to 55k but there are always exceptions I guess.

Pay varies widely here, I know of fresh grads getting $17 p/h contract for .NET development to a former college with many years experience and a PhD getting $120K salary for VB6 development.

$100 per hour is possible with specific experience, however they will be short term contracts, probably 3 to 6 months. Keep in mind though that in some cities the median house price is $450k, so you wont have much left over from that $100 p/h anyway ;)

Null Reference Exception
January 27th, 2007, 03:39 PM
Oneday I ment an australian programmer who works at a university in his country and he went online and logged in to his university's account and showed me the salaries for PHP programmers and I was shocked when I read that they earn between $30,000 and $80,000 depending on the programmer's skills and degree! but for me even if I get the least that would make me live as a king in my country!!! God have mercy on my country's programmers!

Like someone else mentioned its relative to the cost of living. 30k in Aus is not much, $1.20 p/l fuel, rent would be ~$200 p/w for a 1 bedroom apartment. After tax you would not have much money left at all. Forget about buying a house. Even at 80k (48% tax) the king will most likely be without his palace.

samjh
January 27th, 2007, 11:00 PM
So how much bucksa a month/year is it in the country where you live??? I was searching on the net a bit and found it that is is $50000 in US??? This seems so non-logical especially when I saw that a cardiologist has a $150000 salary!!!](*,)

In Australia, it's between AUD$35,000 to AUD$55,000 for "junior" (ie. less than 2 years experience) programming positions. For "senior" positions (ie. 5 years or more experience etc.), it's around AUD$60,000 to AUD$100,000.

It really depends heavily on skills. J2EE and .NET programmers command the biggest bucks, while web programmers have the lowest salaries. C/C++ programmers sit somewhere in the middle of the range.

As for the comparison with a cardiologist, I'd rate healthcare to be a job category with greater educational and monetary investment, occupational risk, and ethical responsibility than computer programming. Their large pay packets are not surprising at all.

CC2k
December 16th, 2009, 05:18 AM
I am currently in Las Vegas (usa) and have been programming since the early 80's. I switches to PHP/MySQL almost exclusively about 5 years ago.

As far as salary goes..
Full Time work 60k - $55 if the benefits are really good.
Freelance is $50 an hr. (got to save Uncle Sam's portion you know. LOL)

Personally I have run into way too many programmers who sell themselves short and even more who hurt the price because they claim to be programmers when they are really LEGO kiddies who can't program for crap without some framework or wysiwyg to help them along.

I'm self taught, but have yet to run into anything I can't teach a computer to do.
Early on, a degree would have been nice and I certainly encourage anyone thinking of becoming a programmer to get one, unless you are willing to spend the first 5 years or so just to build a reputation.
Personally I have enough awards on my wall to tip the scales when weighed against a diploma, but as I said I don't recommend the hard road to success. heheh

Lastly, for those of you out here who are REAL programmers, hold fast to your code unless they are willing to pay what it's worth and don't let desperation force you into being part of the reason Corporations are driving down the programmers salary.

When I run into clients that don't want to pay what it is worth I politely send them on down the road to the low priced, inexperienced, substandard guys knowing full well they will be back crying the blues when the project is over budget and failing to meet their expectations. Also, I never bother myself with low cost template sites that should be done by novice programmers and PHP students anyway.

OK, sorry I will get off the soapbox, but I couldn't resist a rally speech to help convince the programming community to stick together and help one another get the pay we deserve. Belive me when I say the commercial companies need our skills a lot more than we need them. People have always been able to control the corporations, it's just they are to afraid to try. :popcorn:

SunSpyda
December 16th, 2009, 07:58 PM
Wow. This has hardly encouraged me to take a career path in computing :/

The older I get, the more bad stories I hear.

travmanx
December 16th, 2009, 08:43 PM
Wow this is extremely old topic. Don't know why it was even brought back.

Wow. This has hardly encouraged me to take a career path in computing :/

The older I get, the more bad stories I hear.

It really depends on your location, and experience. You can't expect to make 80,000 first year after college. It's gonna get tougher and tougher each year with more and mroe people joining Computer Programming field.
I've noticed on the many places I've looked for jobs require already 2-5+ years of experience (non-freelance). Only 1 or 2 jobs near me only require a degree in the field... so if they aren't hiring, your screwed. Unless you know someone (higher up in the chain), how are you supposed to get a job.
Freelancing is a nice way to go; however most people hire you without any type of degree in hand or very little experience. They go for who does it the cheapest. As long it gets done.

It's just hard starting out. Do the best you can do on all your projects and don't half *** any just to get it done.
Good luck!
Travis

Barriehie
December 17th, 2009, 02:07 AM
$1500 every 2 weeks right out of college. not that bad, not that great, but i actually like going to work and using my brain the way i have to. you could pay me 1/2 of that and i'd probably still be happy as long as i get to do what i do best.

+1 for doing what you like to do! Long as the bills get paid and the dogs are healthy!

Barrie