Netflix, Roku, Reddit Offer H-1B Technologists the Highest Salaries

Which technology companies pay the average highest salaries to H-1B workers? Given the chatter around longtime tech giants’ use of the H-1B, you might assume the likes of Google, Microsoft, and Oracle would top that particular list. However, a new analysis makes it clear that newer technology companies such as Reddit, Roku and TikTok tend to offer the highest paychecks to those with the visa.

In order to rank salaries, we turned to the H-1B Salary Database, which indexes Labor Condition Application (LCA) disclosure data from the United States Department of Labor (DOL). We excluded all of the companies in non-tech industries, such as medicine and the law. Here’s the resulting list:

That Netflix would top the list (by a healthy margin) should come as no surprise if you know anything about the streaming giant’s hiring and retention practices. In simplest terms, Netflix’s corporate culture dictates extremely high salaries, on the idea that extraordinary performers are worth extraordinary compensation—and if they don’t deliver, they’re given a generous severance package.

However, you might not expect to see some of the other names on this list. For example, Roku, Reddit, and Airbnb are paying higher average salaries to H-1B holders than, say, Google. (If you’re curious about how H-1B salaries for various technologist jobs compare to the “general” salaries for those roles, the Dice Salary Report has those answers for you.)

Why are these companies beating out most of the tech giants when it comes to H-1B salaries? The answer probably lies in volume; compared to entities like Facebook and Google, even Netflix applies for comparatively few H-1B visas—and it’s a good bet those roles are highly specialized (and thus deserving of high pay). When big tech companies apply for many thousands of H-1B visas per year, it’s likely to drive their average H-1B salary down, especially when many of those applications are for “software developer” and other jobs that might not be quite as highly specialized.

In addition to that, big tech firms tend to subcontract H-1B workers from subcontracting and business-services companies, and those subcontractors traditionally make even less. Although the Trump administration took several steps to make it more problematic for companies to subcontract H-1B workers, it seems unlikely that the practice will end anytime soon. 

If a company applies for a relatively low number of H-1Bs, and pays those workers the sort of salary that usually comes with highly specialized roles, chances are greater that they’re utilizing the visa as intended. Of course, the debate about whether most companies are indeed using the H-1B correctly will grind on, with the various sides proposing “corrective” legislation. Companies could scramble to adjust their H-1B application processes once again if some rumored Biden administration reforms actually go through

2 Responses to “Netflix, Roku, Reddit Offer H-1B Technologists the Highest Salaries”

  1. Jake Leone

    Some companies do offer high salaries to a FEW H-1b workers, but as you know, most (half) of the H-1b visas are going to Offshore Outsourcing companies. Offshore Outsourcing companies pay the lowest salaries, at or near the lowest base salary of 60k/yr.

    You know Stuart Anderson is against the change to a salary based allocation from a brain-dead lottery (a brain-dead lottery that is gamed and mostly won by Offshore Outsourcing companies). But if you google H-1b in Google News. Stuart Anderson’s bought off articles come up first. And that is just insane, because his views are actually detrimental to the interests of Silicon Valley companies. The only people who like the current brain dead lottery are the Offshore Outsourcing companies and immigration lawyers (who benefit from the massive numbers of redundant H-1b visa applications and that falsely make it look like there is excess demand for H-1b visas, when in reality it is just Offshore Outsourcing companies, illegally stuffing in a massive number of H-1b applications for the same job).

    Further, if CEO’s will risk jail time for colluding to prevent engineers from exercising their free market right to leave a company, for any other company. These indentured foreign engineers have a value, that Americans cannot and are not allowed to compete with. That is the right to self-indenture yourself (the 13th amendment makes this impossible for American citizens).

    Facebook, discriminated against better qualified (by Facebook’s own admission to Federal investigators) 2600+ times (over just a 1.5 year period). Because foreign engineers can self indenture themselves with an H-1b visa and then with the long (decades long) wait for a Green Card.

    It is discrimination to consider a worker’s lack of rights when hiring for jobs here in America. Facebook broke Federal anti-discrimination law 2600+ times. Because of an illegal preference for foreign workers over American workers.

    Please read the Email exchange between Eric Schmidt and Steve Jobs in the infamous Silicon Valley no poaching scandal. Also read the DOJ vs Facebook indictment, in the case of 2600+ cases of discrimination against better qualified local STEM/IT workers and the illegal preference for foreign workers.

  2. Where is the analysis based on where the H1b workers brought in by the bodyshops are actually working? That’s where the truth comes out. Saying company A only hires H1b workers at a relatively high salary is not exactly complete information if there are a also few hundred under contract from Infosys or Cognizant.