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California Wage Transparency Reveals Big Tech Salaries

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Gizmodo took a look at salaries for some open positions at Apple, Meta and Tesla in California.

Gizmodo took a look at salaries for some open positions at Apple, Meta and Tesla in California.
Image: Apple Campus in Cupertino, Justin Sullivan (Getty Images), Facebook Headquarters in Menlo Park, Justin Sullivan (Getty Images), Tesla Factory in Fremont, Justin Sullivan (Getty Images)

California salary transparency law officially took effect from January 1, obliging companies to disclose the wages they pay their workers. As such, the curtain is being pulled back on the mystery behind cash flow through some of Silicon Valley’s biggest companies.

Last September, California Governor Gavin Newsom officially signed Senate Bill 1162 into law, which requires California companies with more than 15 employees to post a position’s salary in their job posting. Likewise, current employees can ask the company for the salary scale for their position.

New York City enacted a similar pay transparency law earlier this year, with just little hiccupsand the state of New York also signed a state wage transparency law. Senate Bill 1162 was designed specifically to address the gender pay gap, according to quotes from Governor Newsom, but an unintended side effect of the state’s transparency law is that it now sheds light on how much some of the biggest technology companies in the world pay their workers.

Gizmodo took a look at three random job openings each from goal, Litterand tesla to find out how much these companies are paying for different positions. While job posting sites like Indeed offer salary estimates, these salary ranges are likely to be more accurate as they come straight from the horse’s mouth.

California Jobs at Meta pay:

  • Software Engineer (Leadership) – Product na Meta requires more than 12 years of experience in programming and more than 8 years of experience with web or mobile technologies: $205,000 to $281,000 per year;
  • Data Scientist, Machine Learning on Facebook requires at least one Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics, Statistics, related technical field or equivalent practical experience and a minimum of 8 years of experience (minimum of 6 years with a PhD): $197,000 to $269,000 per year;
  • Research Scientist Intern, Computer Vision and Machine Learning for Messenger requires the candidate to have or be in the process of obtaining a Ph.D. and Meta says that internships last from 12 to 24 weeks: $7,313 to $10,250 per month.

California jobs at Apple pay:

  • Sending, receiving and sending mail requires 5+ years of experience in a fast-paced send, receive, mail team or similar environment: $29.04 to $43.59 per hour ($60,403.20 to $90,667.20 per year assuming a 40-hour work week for 52 weeks);
  • Exhibition Technologist “generally requires” a Ph.D. or a master’s degree with more than 5 years of experience in the relevant field: $113,500 and $207,000 per year;
  • WiFi Quality Engineer is an entry-level position that requires at least two years of experience with 802.11 and/or Bluetooth protocols and software quality assurance methodologies and practices, and only requires a bachelor’s degree: $113,500 and $171,000 per year.

California jobs at Tesla pay:

  • Solar maintenance, lead roofer requires general hardware and wiring experience along with customer service skills and a valid driver’s license: $14.63 to $52.62 per hour ($30,430.40 to $109,449.60 per year assuming a 40-hour work week for 52 weeks);
  • automotive painter requires at least 5 years of car refinishing experience and you must be 18 or older: $18.24 to $82.08 per hour (US$37,939.20 to US$170,726.40 assuming a 40-hour work week for 52 weeks);
  • Associate quality engineer requires a bachelor’s degree in engineering or a related technical field and willingness to travel: $57,600 to $309,600 per annum.

The salary ranges in some of the positions are comically huge, which is probably not a good thing for the potential employee if they are being offered a job on the lower end. But it gives both the company and the job seekers wiggle room to negotiate. Each of these corporations had hundreds of job openings in California alone, and Gizmodo looked at a few more from each company. On the surface, it looked like Meta offered fewer entry-level jobs than Apple and Tesla. Tesla, meanwhile, appears to be leaning more towards positions that pay by the hour rather than annually. And although Tesla has positioned as a technology company, there have been recent answer among investors, labeling it an automaker, not a technology company.