Php developer income

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38 Replies - 6446 Views - Last Post: 27 January 2012 - 07:43 PM

#16 CTphpnwb  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 06:54 AM

I agree Jon, and I haven't seen enough to say for sure, but I have seen enough that I can say it's very likely that JBrace1990 writes decent enough code that he's highly underpaid and would still be somewhat underpaid at $35/hr.
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#17 Jstall  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 07:16 AM

As I'm sure you know pay rates are heavily influenced by location, you should do some searching for going rates in your area for the role you want to fill. That being said 28k sounds really low.

In the area I live an entry level programmer can expect around 40-45k. Other parts of the country it can be closer to 60k or so starting out.
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#18 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 09:46 AM

View PostCTphpnwb, on 19 January 2012 - 08:54 AM, said:

I agree Jon, and I haven't seen enough to say for sure, but I have seen enough that I can say it's very likely that JBrace1990 writes decent enough code that he's highly underpaid and would still be somewhat underpaid at $35/hr.


If you say so, I believe it. I was speaking of the generic hotshot kid, knowing nothing about the fellow in question.
Unfortunately, the people hiring him don't know what you know any more than I do, so it's likely that doubling his current wage will have to go in steps.

My advice to JBrace, for what it's worth, would be to always have a few resumes in someone's queue, and to keep an eye out for freelance work. If you're a web developer, you have a real advantage over a tech writer like me, or a backend developer, and that's that your work is on display. Keep an online resume up to date, and look for ways to add to it.
If you keep in touch with other folks in the tech sector, it's likely that you'll get a few calls to do some freelance work. Do it - if you're as good and as fast as CTphpnwb says, you'll make a good hourly wage no matter what you charge for the job as a whole, and quickie freelance work builds resume lines faster than full-time punchclock work.
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#19 CTphpnwb  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 09:52 AM

Yes, rates are influenced by location, but this is also a global market. Just as employers often take advantage of lower wages in poor areas, programmers can and should take advantage of the fact that their skills are in high demand world wide and there are relatively few people who can or will do the job well. It doesn't matter if you're in the middle of nowhere. You can get a decent rate as long as you have the ability and a decent internet connection.

If you're just getting into the business the last thing you should want to do is undercut programming wages by accepting a job at low/no skill labor rates. In addition to lowering the going rate (bad for your long term prospects), it makes it look like you have no faith in your abilities (bad for your short term prospects).

I think this applies here. A quote from it:

Quote

In the design world, there’s a well-known swin­dle where a pres­ti­gious but stingy client says “I wish I could pay you, but I don’t have the bud­get. How about you let me use your work for free? I know it’ll be great expo­sure for you, and lead to pay­ing work.” In truth, it’s not, and it won’t. Designer Jes­sica His­che aptly calls this “the most toxic line of bull­shit any­one will ever feed you.” Why? Because it’s just good-natured grift­ing, an exploita­tion of the weaker by the stronger. Nev­er­the­less, it works, because there will always be design­ers hun­gry enough to believe that they don’t have other choices.

Don't believe you don't have other choices. Be stronger than that. Remember that at or even close to a rate as low as $14/hour you have gazillions of better options.
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#20 Craig328  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 10:13 AM

View PostJBrace1990, on 14 January 2012 - 05:36 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.


It could be your question is misguided. You say you're "looking into a job with a local company". That means that a job exists, the company appears to be actively accepting applications for it which also means they almost certainly have a salary range and benefits in mind along with the duties the position entails. You later said you make $28K/yr which, for a student with less than a year's experience probably isn't too bad (although it may be a tad on the low side).

You ask what someone else would expect which invites the education vs. experience debate...which, truly, isn't germane to your situation because "what someone else would expect" doesn't matter if there isn't an employer willing to pay that. The good news is that you have an immediate way to determine what at least one person would expect such a job to be worth: the potential employer.

Contact them and ask them for the job requirements (see if you meet them). If you do then ask about the duties of the job and the skills they claim the position needs. Only when you have that in hand can you begin to make an accurate assessment of what the salary and benefits would be worth. The job market doesn't comport to what things "should" be...it sets what they are and you have, right in front of you, an opportunity to see what that is.

Good luck!
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#21 BenignDesign  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 10:53 AM

View PostJstall, on 19 January 2012 - 09:16 AM, said:

As I'm sure you know pay rates are heavily influenced by location, you should do some searching for going rates in your area for the role you want to fill. That being said 28k sounds really low.

In the area I live an entry level programmer can expect around 40-45k. Other parts of the country it can be closer to 60k or so starting out.



I've been working as a PHP developer for roughly 10 years now. My entry level position was nowhere near 45K... and I still don't make 60K.
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#22 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 11:12 AM

I would be astonished by any entry level position making $60K, and I'm in Boston.
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#23 ccubed  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 11:24 AM

Like anything else, companies expect three things.

Experience, Proven Work, Education.

If you have all three, you'll be good. And yes, even in Knoxville TN, near Oak Ridge TN, an entry level PHP or web developer job making 60K is a bit much. More like 35 or 45. Computer science? Yeah, okay, maybe around 50-55k here for entry. But Web Development? 60K? Be happy.

This post has been edited by ccubed: 19 January 2012 - 11:25 AM

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#24 no2pencil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 19 January 2012 - 11:27 AM

I would think there would be a difference in pay if you worked at a web development company, or if you worked for company 'X'.

Both can do PHP development, but I would expect the amount of pay would be dependent on the percentage of income your department brings to the company.
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#25 CTphpnwb  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 20 January 2012 - 07:46 AM

In the early 1980s while still in college I was charging $35/hour to write code in BASIC and businesses were happy to pay it. Now these same businesses are making much larger profits than they were then but they've got people convinced that they need to cut labor costs. The fact is they need programmers now much more than they did then, so rates should go up, not down.

It sounds to me like some of us need to worry less about programming and more about negotiating.

BTW, my current rate for PHP side jobs is $65/hour and I rarely have time to take on more work. I don't say this to brag, but to point out that if you're confident in your skills and willing to turn down poor paying gigs then you'll get good ones.
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#26 JBrace1990  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 20 January 2012 - 07:29 PM

I've pretty much known I've been underpaid since I began. It's difficult to approach your bosses and tell them you'd like 2-4 times your current salary. Any suggestions? =/

This post has been edited by JBrace1990: 20 January 2012 - 07:29 PM

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#27 JackOfAllTrades  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 20 January 2012 - 07:32 PM

No easy task; certainly not one I've ever attempted. I believe the easiest way to increase your salary significantly, (for differing definitions of easy) is sadly to find a new job and ask for what you want up front.
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#28 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 20 January 2012 - 08:12 PM

Like I said, keep resumes in play. It's a lot easier to ask for a raise if you have an offer in hand.
"Boss, I have an offer, and I'm inclined to take it. If you're interested, though, you can make a counter-offer."
But of course it's not easy at most companies to make major salary leaps without getting a change in title and responsibilities, so expect to do this by moving on, not by staying in one place. This is why I suggested taking on lots of freelance work - the longer your brag sheet, the more you can justify yourself for the higher-paid positions, and you get that long brag sheet by doing quick and dirty jobs.
And as I said already, if you really are able to do good work fast, you can bid on the job, not by the hour, and come out ahead.
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#29 CTphpnwb  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 20 January 2012 - 09:44 PM

It's human nature that if somebody thinks they can take advantage of you then it's hard to get them to respect you. If they don't respect you, they're not going to give you a raise, certainly not what they'd need to do to be competitive.

I'm not saying they have zero respect for you, but right now they think you're a kid who's working for a kid's pay, and you're going to have a hard time changing their minds no matter what you do on the job. It will probably be easier to find a better paying job elsewhere.
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#30 The Architect 2.0  Icon User is offline

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Re: Php developer income

Posted 25 January 2012 - 03:36 AM

CTphpnwb, do you know anyone else that made what you did when you first started? or do you know anyone else making that much starting off?

I've honestly haven't heard of $35/hour starting out EVER. You got paid that much when starting off on PHP as well? I'm just a little bit dazed and confused by what you've said, cause I've heard horror stories of entry-level PHP programmers being treated as the 'child labor' of the software industry. I've been told that 50K is near the upper end of what you expect coming out of school.
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