Salaries of Venture-Backed Startups in 2022
Getting hired at a venture-backed startup is exciting! You’re going to have the
opportunity to work on something new with people who really care about their business. The
startup environment gives people the chance to build a team from the ground up.
While having the chance to work on a passionate team is great and all, a main concern
when accepting a job is the salary. Even when you care about a company, money is one of the
greatest motivators. So, let’s talk about money and what reasonable compensation at a venture-
backed startup should be.
Venture-Backed Startup Salary
If you are transitioning from corporate America into a venture-backed startup, you might
be in for a salary decrease at first. It’s important to keep in mind that the founders are aware of
this, and offer employees other benefits, as well. These benefits can include company equity
that will make up for a lower salary as the company succeeds. Before accepting a position, you
should always do your research and ask questions to make sure you have a full understanding
of your benefits. The equity benefits in exchange for a lower salary should balance out, and
make sure taking that lower salary will not put financial strain on you in hopes that the stocks
Payscale puts the average salary of a startup employee at around $101k a year. Another
thing to consider, of course, is the position you are accepting. Different roles are going to have
different levels of compensation. According to Payscale, these are some of the averages for
typical positions you’ll find at venture-backed startups.
UX Designer: $55k-$108k
Software Engineer: $73k-138k
Product Manager: $76k-$148k
So, if you’re looking to get into a venture-backed startup keep these numbers in mind.
Every company is going to be different depending on what they have for funding. It’s important
to be prepared to negotiate if you don’t feel the salary will suit your needs. For example, if you
are applying to a tech company that requires you to live in Silicon Valley, the cost of living is
going to be higher than living in Wisconsin and your salary should reflect that.
If you’re looking to get into the founder world and create a venture-backed startup, you
may be wondering what you may get paid. Founders and CEOs get to decide what they pay
themselves, and it’s going to vary dramatically across the board. It will also ultimately depend on
the amount of funding the company has received to determine salaries. The average CEO
salary will also vary depending on the industry of the venture-backed startup.
According to Kruze Consulting, the average salary for a venture-backed startup CEO is
$130k at startups with around $8million in funding. That is not to say that they don’t get paid
more or less. Some CEOs will take a lower salary to compensate employees because they don’t
seem it necessary to live off of. It will all depend on the company.