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Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Google–these are considered the top tier companies by many engineers on Blind. Those who aren’t employed at one of these elite companies, often try to get into one. Blind is teeming with users asking for advice on how to pass a FAANG interview.
What FAANG is to engineers is similar to what Ivy League schools are to college students. Many make it their goal to get into companies like Facebook or Google. Our users mention a number of reasons why, all of which point to an overarching theme that FAANG provides value, both real and perceived.
The top two reasons:
1. Compensation. This is by far the most mentioned reason on Blind. Among the elite, Netflix is said to pay top dollar, with an average total compensation of $400K. Facebook is said to pay signing bonuses as high as $100K. FAANG has set the bar for what today’s engineers get paid in Silicon Valley and even Seattle. The downside: The insanely high cost of living in Silicon Valley can quickly make a dent in that TC.
2. Reputation. With a globally recognized company listed on a resume, an engineer can expect to find less roadblocks when networking or when trying to find a job. More doors open and they open more easily. The brand name might not guarantee the next job opportunity, but it can certainly help an engineer stand out from the competition.
Other reasons for wanting to join FAANG:
3. Engineers are highly valued. While Google might be more engineering-driven than Amazon, as a whole, FAANG places more value on their engineers than companies like Walmart, Macy’s, or General Electric. This is because engineers generate revenue for FAANG as opposed to being cost centers. At FAANG, engineers are part of the latest in tech and they have more opportunities for growth.
4. Perks. FAANG provides the familiar perks, including wellness benefits, transportation coverage, paid time off, and parental leave. But on top of this, FAANG has the means to offer extra perks that might be difficult to find elsewhere: stipends for continued education or costly off-sites for interns, for example. Some FAANG companies are said to provide better benefits than others though — Facebook being one.
5. Stability. The elite companies are larger and more structured. Responsibilities are more defined and hours are less demanding (though there are exceptions). The environment is less volatile compared to startups, which is great for those who want more job security, want to raise a family, or want better work-life balance.
The last two reasons are points that our users don’t often agree on:
6. Better talent. Users claim that FAANG attracts and employs today’s best engineers…but there are those who disagree:
7. Better projects. Some claim that the work is more interesting at FAANG and that the quality of work is better. Then there are those who say it’s pretty mundane:
FAANG offers engineers value–whether it’s money, skills, or just being able to write down a reputable company on a resume. But can FAANG offer the right value for the individual at the right time? These are questions that engineers sometimes overlook.
Instead of asking how to get an interview at FAANG or how to prepare for it, it might be better to ask the following questions first: What are my professional and/or personal priorities at this point in my life? And can FAANG help address these priorities? Maybe by asking these questions, engineers can avoid feeling like this user from Apple: