Php developer income

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38 Replies - 6744 Views - Last Post: 27 January 2012 - 07:43 PM

#1 JBrace1990  Icon User is offline

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Php developer income

Posted 14 January 2012 - 03:36 PM

I've been looking into a job with a local company for a php developer with jquery experience, and I'm wondering what someone in my boots would expect to receive.

I have 8 months professional experience with php, MySQL, Linux, apache, jQuery.
I'm in the process of getting a B.S. in game and simulation programming.
I've been programming php for 5 years.


My guess is that I'm being grossly underpaid, but I'm interested in what someone else would expect.

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#2 Atli  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 14 January 2012 - 04:15 PM

Moved to the Corner Cubicle forum.
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#3 anonymous26  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 14 January 2012 - 05:29 PM

View PostJBrace1990, on 14 January 2012 - 10:36 PM, said:

I've been looking into a job with a local company for a php developer with jquery experience, and I'm wondering what someone in my boots would expect to receive.

I have 8 months professional experience with php, MySQL, Linux, apache, jQuery.
I'm in the process of getting a B.S. in game and simulation programming.
I've been programming php for 5 years.


My guess is that I'm being grossly underpaid, but I'm interested in what someone else would expect.

I wouldn't expect your pay to be the highest either because you have less than one year's experience, and you are a student. Once you get your degree and more experience then the money might start to roll in! :)
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#4 CTphpnwb  Icon User is online

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 14 January 2012 - 10:08 PM

Personally, I think experience is highly overrated. Sure, it is important, but many people tend to treat it as the single most important factor, and that's not true. With PHP in particular you can have years of "experience" as a designer and not know anything about how to write decent PHP code. Design (HTML/CSS) is a different realm that unfortunately tends to be lumped in with PHP in people's minds.

I'd say that you should try to take a realistic assessment of your PHP skills and price yourself accordingly. Assessing your own skills may not be easy, but try to judge by your 8 months of professional experience and how your client(s) felt about your work. Would they hire you again? Do you have people coming to you for help? In the long run the market will decide. If you priced yourself too high or too low you'd have trouble getting freelance work.

By the way, I wouldn't consider a PHP job that offered less than $35/hour even if I thought my skills were mediocre but passable, so I'd consider that the floor. Since I think I'm better than that, I'd definitely require more. From what I've seen of your skills, you should too.
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#5 anonymous26  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 15 January 2012 - 10:41 AM

So are you saying that you will pay a student with less than one year's experience the same money as someone who isn't a student with several years experience?
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#6 Atli  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 15 January 2012 - 11:58 AM

If the student is a better programmer than the experienced guy, I'd pay the student more. I've always felt people should be payed based on what they can do now, not on what they have done in the past.
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#7 anonymous26  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 15 January 2012 - 12:05 PM

Oh, wow! Completely different perceptions from my industry. In mine you will never find a student better than an experienced guy, if a student is better than you you won't get the job in the first place, and more years of professional experience does mean you will be better.

Another lesson learned. :)
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#8 Martyr2  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 15 January 2012 - 12:49 PM

I would agree with Atli, I have seen students with amazing skills. I have seen other students, and myself, offered nice paying jobs while still in school. I had an employer ask me not to go back to school and to stay on with his company. I ended up turning him down and going back to finish but it certainly does happen that students can be paid more than an experienced guy.

You have to realize that because you had a job in the industry for X years doesn't really necessarily mean you have the equivalent X years of knowledge. I have people working in the company I am currently in who have seniority on me yet really can't solve even the most basic problems.

If you are a young gun programmer who can crank out excellent work and solve tough problems, you are worth your weight in gold to a company. Who cares if you are a student or not. It is the wild west out there and that is why it is so important that programmers stay up on their field, learn all they can and practice outside of their working lives. We are athletes of the mind and athletes need to stay in top shape because you never know when a young gun will come in and be a star.

:)
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#9 anonymous26  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 15 January 2012 - 01:13 PM

My point is that it doesn't happen like that in games. Several times in the passed I've been asked to do work that was initially given to good student programmer who could not complete it. That's a pretty regular occurrence.

I'm yet to see a student be better than any of the programmers where I've worked.
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#10 CTphpnwb  Icon User is online

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 15 January 2012 - 02:06 PM

Experience in PHP can mean many different things. If you're a designer who has written code like this:
<input type="text" name="somename" value="<?php echo $_POST['somename'] ?>">

you can and probably will claim you have experience with PHP for however many years you've been doing it. That doesn't mean you know what a class is or even how to properly use MySQL with PHP. If you don't then your experience, however long, is meaningless.
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#11 Martyr2  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 15 January 2012 - 02:31 PM

View PostButchDean, on 15 January 2012 - 12:13 PM, said:

My point is that it doesn't happen like that in games. Several times in the passed I've been asked to do work that was initially given to good student programmer who could not complete it. That's a pretty regular occurrence.

I'm yet to see a student be better than any of the programmers where I've worked.


Point taken. I would imagine this would happen more in your industry due to the specialized nature. Probably pretty hard for some students to even get their hands on some of the tools you guys work with. Pretty high learning curve too I would imagine. Plus you may even have tools and techniques which are proprietary to your company.

:)
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#12 anonymous26  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 15 January 2012 - 03:16 PM

Right on all counts there. :)

This post has been edited by ButchDean: 15 January 2012 - 03:16 PM

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#13 JBrace1990  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 18 January 2012 - 05:41 PM

Well, there is a HUGE difference between professional experience and my own experience.

I'm 21 right now, and I've been programming in php since I was 16. It's where I found my love for programming.

That being said, I do a lot at my current job, and don't get paid nearly what I feel I should (28K/year right now).

Some will say that's a lot, but when people make 80-90K/year, you tend to wonder. On top of PHP, I also do MySQL, jQuery, and the occasional CSS.
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#14 CTphpnwb  Icon User is online

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 18 January 2012 - 06:01 PM

If a job is worth doing then it's worth a certain minimum amount of pay. Programming in any language requires a fair degree of education and training. As such, I'd say that education and training is worth significantly more than the education and training required to be a waitress, for example. My niece makes $14/hour working as a waitress part time. At 2000 hours per year that would come out to $28K.

I'd say you should start looking for an employer who won't try to steal from you, because your current one is doing just that. Like I said before, I'd consider $35/hr to be the bare minimum I'd be willing to take and that would only be if I thought my skills were barely acceptable to be hired at all. Yours are better than that.
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#15 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 12:08 AM

Quote

If you are a young gun programmer who can crank out excellent work and solve tough problems, you are worth your weight in gold to a company.


I'd want to know a lot more than "can crank out code". I want someone who will generate code that can be maintained, and that's something that seems to come with experience. In PHP this is especially important, because it's so easy to get yourself tied up in knots and wind up with something that works as long as you don't touch it, or look at it funny. Since PHP does nothing to enforce structure, you have to provide your own, and when you tell me that someone's in the habit of "cranking out" the code, that doesn't convey any sense of forethought and structure.

It's possible that a kid could write well-structured, well-thought-out code really fast, of course. No doubt about that. But what you describe doesn't sound like that kid.
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