U.S. startups may represent a sweet spot among my job choices. I think they are less selective than HFT or top tech shops. They attract fewer top geeks.
- Workload – presumably comparable to ibanks like MS/Baml/Barc. I guess some startups are higher, but I guess fewer than 50%. Mithun described 3 startups but he has no firsthand experience.
- Salary — Many startups pay on-par with ibanks, according to CYW
- Leaves – possibly fewer than ibanks
- Cowoker benchmark – possibly lower caliber
- Respect – could be slightly better than in an ibank if you earn the respect
Some of the big tech shops are actually less selective than HFT – Amazon, Apple
In terms of supply/demand, there are systemic forces that support the relatively high developer salary in investment banks.
- #1 pure tech shops — generate high profit, attract hot investment
- #2 buy-side shops including mutual funds
- #3 small startups — only in U.S. can they offer competitive salary
- #4 exchanges and fintech shops including bbg, Reuters, S&P. Some (Miami, NYSE..) seem to generate high profits
- #5 package software vendors
Few of these categories exist in Singapore.
Real deciding factor is coworker benchmark (not PIP/stigma). Are there managers tolerant of team members below the benchmark? Josh, Srini of Citi-muni..? Even in a less demanding company, pressure can be high.
- — Here are some jobs paying 150k with light GTD-load. Usually don’t attract young bright guys.
- employer: slower ibanks like Citi, UBS
- employer: some commercial banks like OC, BONY
- employer: large traditional buy-side like AIG, Vanguard
- employer: 3rd type financial firms like exchanges/ECNs, data vendors (Reuters?), financial product vendors,
- employer: non-finance like telcos
- employer: startups but they tend to use new technologies
- less glamorous — like mkt data, back office
- greenfield codebase with short history — like OC, StirtRisk
- smaller codebase — like RTS
- older workforce — like RTS
- older technologies — like SQL, C, socket