Random Ramblings about stuff I see going on in biotech, internet and the stuff I read.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

So Cal Salary...

From a comment

Hello.. I'm the originator of the big Application Scientist offer in L.A.

Turns out I didn't accept their offer. They needed someone pronto to run an installation overseas and I couldn't meet their start deadline. However, I wasn't too upset because I still think their final salary offer of $72500 with no bonus program and no commission was too low for the SoCal area.

Which leads me to a dilemma... the company has recently gotten back in touch with me and wants me to interview again for the position. I am not in desperate need of the job (I have several interviews lined up) but I am curious on my leverage with them. I would assume salary negotiations are back open. How far can I push?? I am fairly sure that commission isn't going to be apart of it, and vacation at 2 wks/yr will be standard. I would need a 5K relo or starting bonus. Any ballpark guesses for base salary for L.A. on a app sci position with ~50% international travel?

Thanks for the support. The company obviously wants me but I don't want to blow a deal.

I don't have a good answer for this, and put off answering (bad bad me...). I think at this point you have to decide what you want. Ask for that. See what happens. Worst case - they say no. Then you are right back where you started.

Realize this isn't great advice, but its the best I've got right now...

Go pats...


app sci applicant said...

Honestly, I was hoping for more. But don't feel bad... it's a tricky question (and very personal/situational). I'm hoping some readers can give me a little insight. Maybe someone who has worked a similar position based out of L.A.?

Worth a shot. And looks like your team came up with the goods 18-0.

yes said...

Sorry for no more, but at a certain point too many of the details become important. Some that come to mind.

1. First real job?

2. Good ability to learn here?

3. Subset of 2-> will it teach you a bunch of stuff that will help with the next job, and do so better than another job that might pay better?

At some point you will just have to pick one and go. Above all though, don't take one that you don't like. The fact that you keep coming back to this one is, in my mind, not so great. If it was truely great, I think you would have jumped at it. Don't convince your self it is good. OR it is good and you are thinking they are low balling you. I don't think they are low balling you by that much, if at all, if this is your first job (and I seem to remember it is). I could see a $80K offer, but I wouldn't offer more than that for a fresh Ph.D.

I would get you there with some sort of bonus or commission structure though, as you aren't worth it straight out of school.

...bummed it is the Giants, as they "know" they can beat the pats. should be a good superbowl.

app sci applicant said...

I felt guilty after I commented above; thanks for adding a bit more. I'll be meeting with both the L.A. people as well as a much larger, more established company in Indiana and it will be the perfect opportunity to compare/contrast.

After that, me a pen, and a sheet of white paper will solve this dilemma. I appreciate the support. You're right: first job- and first solid offer. I need a few more calibration points before I'm completely at ease. Time (and shortly, too) will tell.

yes said...

My skin is WAY thicker than that. People say much worse to me daily to my face....Get to eastern europe and expect to be told, to your face, that your ideas suck and your an idiot.

Good luck!

AD said...

I was just reading up on all your comments about Application Scientist positions. I have just joined a company in Boston as an Application Scientist after a 2yr post doc in NYC. I like my job so far, but I am at a loss as to what is the next step in the career of an Application Scientist... Is there anyone out there who has successfully transitioned into a better position from being an Application Scientist? I would be very interested in knowing since I am looking to start a family in about a couple of years or so and would like to spend a lot less time travelling.

app sci applicant said...

I just returned from my 'official' interview in So. Cal. and I'll tell you what all of their old Application Scientists moved in to:

-Product Manager
-somewhere in the marketing department (forget the title)
-Sales rep
-Application Scientist manager
-moved to a different company for product manager
-moved to a different company for Clinical Scientist (of related medical devices)

And to cap it all off, there's a great summary of career pathways in the Sept '05 dropdown menu. And lots of talk on App Sci options so definitely read through older entries of the blog.

Now about me: I just returned (last night, in fact) from So. Cal. after touring the companies HQ. They are very start-up; more scrappy than I was expecting. That explains their low offer. Nice people and I think their product has legs but the travel will more than likely be >50% and I'd have to hit the ground running because it's way more physics than biology. I'm waiting to see the offer letter v2 but I expect it to be 75K base, no bonus/commission, 4500 moving expenses.

Not much to say until that materializes. Good luck in your transition out of App Sci, can't stay there forever!

Anonymous said...

Is this company you're talking about based in Vista, CA? Are they still operating out of a home office?

app sci applicant said...

This company has its main office in Northridge. Are you talking about 'home office' as in a residence? That is not the case for me.

app sci applicant said...

To tie it all together: I took the job with predicted salary. Very excited. Slightly nervous. Hope I don't embarrass the crap out of myself. I'm sure my nervousness will pass because I'm more excited about learning the niche than anything else.

Thanks to 'yes' for your help. I'll be a loyal reader (and learner) for times to come.

Anonymous said...

Its been wonderful to read this blog and esp this entry for a few months now. App sci applicant looks to have nailed the job....I hope he keeps us posted on how things turn out.

The company our man seems to have joined could be Photon Imaging, Gamma Medica, Medtronics or Siemens. These companies are close to Northridge ( and I am in OH). I would not count on Siemens since thats no start-up. Is that right?