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Subject:Re: salary ranges in florida From:Gus Lemming <lemming -at- PTS -dot- MOT -dot- COM> Date:Fri, 9 Sep 1994 20:45:50 GMT
In article AA06981 -at- bev -dot- etn -dot- com, rlippinc -at- bev -dot- etn -dot- com () writes:
> Anne Halsey asked about salaries in West Palm Beach:
> I'm in Boston, so I don't have concrete data. But, I've been following
> salary/job data in Florida for a while. According to the latest STC salary
> survey, tech writing salaries in Florida are well below the national average.
> This survey, however, is for the entire state and does not break down by
> On the other hand, West Palm Beach is also home to Pratt & Whitney. I
> received a job offer from them a few years back, and the figure was quite
> competitive with other offers. Actually, when the standard of living is
> factored in, the P&W deal was probably better than the offer from GE that
> I accepted. (So why did I go to Boston? Because my in-laws live near West
> Palm Beach.) P&W ought to drag the area figures up somewhat, I would think.
Rick, Anne and all:
I've been here in Florida for a few years doing "da tek ryting ting", and have
"da ting" in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and a short contract on Klingon.
entirely from a contractor's vantage point, here is what I can tell you:
1. In general, rates are lower here, but not terribly so. I bill $27/hr right
now at a major mutlinational conglomerate in Palm Beach County, and that's
pretty decent. In my estimation, one could expect $25 - $30 per hour
on a fairly regular basis. This is generally commensurate on how
aggressive the job shop is; I should say on how aggressive you make them.
What I do know about direct employee salaries, at least the half dozen or so
jobs I have been offered, is that they fall in the $22,000 to $35,000 range.
But who wants to deal with saluting a company flag and all the angst that
goes along with direct employment, when you can be a contractor. Much
more money, and you can have a bad attitude. Speaking of contracting...
2. Unfortunately, FLA is completely job shop driven; this ultimately keeps
rates lower. This is because the PIMPS, as I love to refer to them, have
to get their cut. And the client companies (or JOHNS) for some reason,
are incredibly reluctant to hire contractors directly.
Recently, one of the pimps jumped in bed with a HUGE john, signing an
exclusive contract to provide them with all tech writers, desktop publishers,
etc. One of the things the pimp promised was to lower billing rates to the
john in return for the contract. Now all of a sudden, these $25 - $30 rates
were becoming $16 - $21. I guess the pimp said "Hmm, it would be better to
send 100 cheap whores then 20 higher priced ones." Perhaps a sensible
business decision from the pimp's standpoint, but the whores weren't happy.
Consequently, many of us whores began finding other pimps who were not
willing to make those kind of concessions. Well, I digress/regress rapidly...
4. There are quite a few large companies around, a few that I have frequented.
A long time contractor once told me "The hallways at these big companies are
lined with gold, all you have to do is bring your bucket." There's IBM and
Siemens in Boca Raton, Motorla has 2 sights (1 in Palm Beach and Broward
counties each), Hewlett Packard, Bell South, just to name a few. Almost
always, if you get an opportunity at any of these places and do good work,
they will ask your pimp to send you again when the urge hits.
5. I can't stress this enough; DON'T THINK THE COST OF LIVING HERE IN
FLORIDA IS ALOT LESS THEN ANYWHERE ELSE. Many people are have that mis-
conception. I remember when I moved down about 3 years ago thinking "Well
shit, I can live down there for $2 a month (insert stupid chuckle here)."
I would say, factoring everything in, it is about 5 to 10 percent cheaper.
My rent is $825 a month. The good news is your rent dollar gets more here.
Whereas that much would get you a decent one, maybe two bedroom apartment in
Boston, here I have a 3 bedroom townhouse with little lizards thrown in free
of charge. The biggest chunk of savings here is that there is no state income
tax, or city wage taxes.
In general, I find FLA to be a an extremely antiseptic reality. Generic
suburban sprawl. No real mass transit. A real lack of museums, history,
etc. Plus, they broadcast the mold count on the weather report (mold count?).
Guess I'm just a Northeast snob. Oh well, the only reason I came down anyway
was to wear my boxer shorts in February for a few years. But if you like
that kind of stuff, c'mon down.