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Stripe: The top paying fintech is rethinking compensation

If you're looking for a high paying job in fintech, there's not a whole lot out there better than Stripe. The payments decacorn was one of the highest paying companies for engineers according to Levels.fyi's 2022 compensation report.

However, as any fintech employee knows, it's not just about salary. It's also about restricted stock options (RSUs). After Stripe didn't go public as expected last year and may remain private this year at a vastly reduced valuation (down $11Bn) from the peak, those RSUs are becoming an issue.

The problem is that the RSUs Stripe issued to persuade employees to work there in the past are due to start vesting from 2024. Employees who hold them will forfeit the shares unless Stripe a) buys them out, b) restructures the awards or c) launches an IPO soon. 

Either way, both Stripe and the employees holding the RSUs face a big tax bill.

All of this explains why Stripe needs a few people to help it out. The fintech is currently hiring five compensation program managers in the US to work on "compensation strategy and design" and "building our key global compensation programs."

Does this mean Stripe is going to change the way it pays? Probably not when it comes to generous salaries (even these administration roles can earn an annual salary of up to $180k), but maybe when it comes to RSUs. However, it seems that the firm might be squeezing salaries of its top engineers this year. 

There are also ongoing debates over the company's work life balance, which is reputedly harsh. Writing on Blind, one employee says grueling hours are in the company's DNA. A Staff engineer on $730k says it's a great place for younger engineers to start off their careers. He says "if you’re senior, take it and make it an experience you like. If you’re junior, buckle up, pay your dues, come out the other end better for it."

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AUTHORAlex McMurray Editor

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