At the risk of stating the obvious, it’s no secret that there’s big money in the banking industry. And the good news is that for top tech talent, you don’t need to know how to crack a safe to get it.
As the financial technology (fintech) space continues its rapid growth and threatens to disrupt the entire banking industry, big-name players like Wells Fargo and Bank of America are eager to attract the best and brightest in tech talent away from companies like Stripe and Venmo. But, the question is:
Can Wells Fargo and Bank of America salaries compete with what a great engineer, web developer, or engineering manager might make with a more traditional tech company?
And if so, is it better to bring your talents to Wells Fargo or Bank of America?
At Paysa, we bring together real salary data to help answer exactly these types of questions. To get started, let’s look at the average Wells Fargo and Bank of America salaries for all employees across any position:
Average Wells Fargo and Bank of America Salaries
When taking a look at overall salary averages for these two giants of the banking industry, Bank of America has a significant leg up on their competitor. Bank of America employees have an average salary of $131,000 per year. That includes a base salary of $88,000, an annual bonus of $22,000 and average equity totaling $21,000 per year.
Comparatively, Wells Fargo’s team has a base salary of $79,000 per year, bonus of $18,000 and equity around $19,000 annually, totaling $116,000 per year—$15,000 less than what you’d earn at Bank of America.
Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that Wells Fargo has nearly 95,000 more employees in the United States than Bank of America and that a significant percentage of those employees are entry-level bank tellers earning less than $50,000 per year. That means while Wells Fargo may be short in overall employee salaries, that may not translate over to how they compensate tech talent.
In fact, when looking at the average salaries for web developers at the two companies, Wells Fargo actually has a considerable edge over Bank of America. Let’s take a look:
Average Wells Fargo and Bank of America Salaries for Web Developers
For web developers looking to explore opportunities in the banking industry, Wells Fargo offers a very competitive salary. At $134,000 per year, developers at Wells Fargo earn $11,000 more than the overall average salary for web developers according to Paysa data.
They also earn substantially more than the $114,000 per year a developer can expect from Bank of America. And there’s a key reason for this: while the base salaries and bonuses at both companies are within $1,000 of one another, Bank of America does not have an equity plan in place for web developers. Web developers at Wells Fargo, on the other hand, can expect $20,000 per year in annual equity.
So, if you’re a developer, getting in with Wells Fargo can actually be a really smart career move (and if you’re interested, check out these open web development opportunities). But, if you’re an engineer or engineering manager, don’t rule out Bank of America just yet:
Average Wells Fargo and Bank of America Salaries for Engineers
Unlike the compensation plan for web developers, Bank of America salaries for engineers actually include annual equity. With a base salary of $110,000 per year, an annual bonus of $17,000 and equity equivalent to $15,000 each year, engineers at Bank of America can expect to earn $143,000 per year.
That’s right around the overall average salary for engineers of $140,000 per year and $2,000 more than you’ll earn for the same job at Wells Fargo. While the base salary of $109,000 per year and bonus of $14,000 are slightly less than what you’d earn at Bank of America, the equity plan at Wells Fargo may still make it the better opportunity. Engineers at Wells Fargo can expect $18,000 a year in equity versus $15,000 at Bank of America.
But what about salaries for engineers looking to progress into leadership?
Average Wells Fargo and Bank of America Salaries for Engineering Managers
The average salary for engineering managers across all companies is $228,000 per year. At Wells Fargo, engineering managers earn slightly more than that with an average base salary of $150,000 per year, a $20,000 bonus, and $65,000 in annual equity, totaling out to $234,000 per year.
At Bank of America, however, engineering managers earn $207,000 per year—less than the overall average. But before you close the door on opportunities at Bank of America, consider this: the base salary there is actually $20,000 more per year than at Wells Fargo. It’s the considerable equity at Wells Fargo that makes the difference. So if you’re looking for more financial stability, Bank of America may actually be the better opportunity.
In Table View
|Wells Fargo||Bank of America|
The banking world has a serious need for top-tier tech talent and these two industry leaders are no exception. Choosing the right company depends on your role and aversion to risk.
And if you want to get into fintech without joining a big bank, here are five fintech companies on the rise you should consider.