Jul 6, 2022 - Business

Triangle tech compensation lags behind many other tech hubs

Select local tech wages compared to San Francisco market
Data: Carta; Chart: Jacque Schrag/Axios

Wages for tech workers in the Triangle are rising quickly, but they still trail other hot tech hubs by a significant amount

Driving the news: Durham and Raleigh are considered third- and fourth-tier cities for tech compensation, respectively, according to private-company data compiled by Carta, the maker of an equity management software.

By the numbers: In Raleigh, tech workers are paid 76% of what their counterparts in San Francisco make. In Durham, the ratio is 81%.

  • The comparative discount between the two regions has helped make the Triangle a popular landing spot for tech expansions in recent years.
  • Companies like Apple and Google have plotted growth in the region because of its talent and cost of living, leading to some concerns that local startups would struggle to compete with them for hires.

Yes, but: The differences in salary for tech workers has become more scrutinized at a time when remote work has skyrocketed in popularity.

  • In February, the Alphabet Workers Union, which represents some Google workers, filed a petition protesting Google's choice to pay workers at its Durham office less than other metro areas, the Washington Post reported.
  • ​​"In our annual review, we found that our compensation guidelines in the Research Triangle region exceeded the market pay benchmarks, so we made adjustments to align with the local market," Google said in a statement at the time.

What they're saying: "The bottom line is that compensation in both Raleigh and (Durham-Chapel Hill) is moving towards the bigger cities," Peter Walker, head of insights at Carta, said in an email.

  • "Even so, startup comp in Raleigh and (Durham-Chapel Hill) is moving upwards from a lower starting point, which means those two cities lag a bit behind young tech hubs like Austin and Miami," he added.

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