How Flatiron Graduate Salaries Compare vs. Local City Averages

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One thing that we at Flatiron School have preached and practiced since we opened our doors in 2012 is transparency. That’s why, in 2013, we launched the coding bootcamp industry’s first-ever jobs report. The thinking went that every person considering a new career deserves to know that their education investment is worth it. And that thinking still stands today — we remain just as committed as ever to providing people with that transparency.

That’s why, every year, we release our third-party-examined Jobs Report. This report is published to give confidence to those wondering if Flatiron is a worthwhile investment for their future. And we try to do that by answering a few important questions:

  • How many Flatiron grads get jobs? 

  • How much money do they make?

  • What types of jobs do they get?

  • And what companies hire them?

Those numbers, we believe, are a good representation of Flatiron School's success.

After we released that first 2013 jobs report, many other tech bootcamps and programs followed suit — which is great! All students deserve that transparency regardless of where they’re considering learning.

At the same time, though, a lot of reports means a lot of different outcomes floating around. There are combined salaries, median salaries, hourly salaries, projected salaries, past salaries, national salaries, and more.

But what we at Flatiron consider most important is graduate salaries compared to their local markets. That’s why we go to great lengths to separate and outline our outcomes both as overall numbers and by location.

Why are salaries vs. local markets important?

Like with any industry, salaries in the tech industry vary by location. You might expect your average software engineer in New York to earn a higher annual wage than an engineer in Houston, and you’d be correct. Those two markets have very different costs of living and average wages. Likewise, $65k as an entry-level software engineer would be a fantastic starting salary in Atlanta but would be on the lower end in Seattle. 

This is why a coding bootcamp should publish national salary averages and local ones.

When you teach students in multiple cities, what matters is how well those students perform relative to other engineers in that city. That is, how well do those students’ average starting salaries compare to other entry-level engineers in that city. 

In our opinion, those market comparisons are the best quality indicators for a course’s curriculum, instructors, and overall experience.

How do our graduates’ salaries compare vs. local markets?

Let’s look at the data. Our 2020 Jobs Report includes data from 6 of our campuses — New York, Washington, D.C., Houston, Seattle, Chicago, and Denver. We compared the average starting salary for our Software Engineering graduates in each city vs. the average starting salary for similar roles in that city. 

The results? The salaries for Flatiron grads in the report were in line with their market's standard, if not better.

All of the Flatiron School salaries below are for graduates who accepted full-time salaried roles within the reporting period of the 2020 Jobs Report and disclosed their compensation. The comparison salaries are all from ZipRecruiter.

New York City grad salaries vs. the local market

Average NYC Flatiron starting salaries: $85,235
Average NYC entry-level software engineering salaries on ZipRecruiter: $75,205

More students graduate from our Manhattan campus annually than any other Flatiron School campus, entering an NYC tech scene full of exciting companies that are great to work for. Once they graduate, they’re landing jobs and starting with salaries higher than the city’s average.

In the report, NYC Software Engineering grads who accepted full-time offers within the reporting period averaged a starting salary of $76,599 — $1,393 higher than the average salary for entry-level software engineers throughout the city. According to ZipRecruiter, the average entry-level engineer in NYC earns $75,206.

Washington, D.C. grad salaries vs. the local market

Average D.C. Flatiron starting salaries: $69,777
Average D.C. entry-level software engineering salaries on ZipRecruiter: $67,648

The tech scene in Washington, D.C. is flourishing, meaning the future is bright for our D.C. grads, who already are entering the tech scene and landing jobs with salaries higher than the city’s average.

Our Washington, D.C Software Engineering graduates who accepted full-time offers within the reporting period average a starting salary of $69,777. That stands $2,129 than average entry-level salaries in D.C., which is $67,648 according to ZipRecruiter.

Houston grad salaries vs. the local market

Average Houston Flatiron starting salaries: $61,900
Average Houston entry-level software engineering salaries on ZipRecruiter: $60,832

Companies are moving from California to Texas in droves, headlined by Elon Musk, who’s building a large Tesla factory to the state. Musk, Oracle, HP, and others moving in bodes well for the state’s tech future. 

The graduates from our Houston Software Engineering program who accepted full-time roles within the reporting period earned $61,900, higher than the city’s average of $60,832.

Seattle grad salaries vs. the local market

Average Seattle Flatiron starting salaries: $77,164
Average Seattle entry-level software engineering salaries on ZipRecruiter: $66,480

Seattle’s always been a big tech hub, with Amazon headquartered there since 1994, when it was called Cadabra, Inc. Amazon, along with Tableau, Zillow, Sur La Table, and others, means opportunities will continue to grow for coders throughout Seattle.

Graduates from our Seattle Software Engineering course averaged salaries much, much higher than the city’s average. Those who accepted full-time roles within the reporting period earned $77,164. According to ZipRecruiter, the average entry-level engineer earns $66,480 — $10,684 less than Flatiron grads. 

Chicago grad salaries vs. the local market

Average Chicago Flatiron starting salaries: $75,375
Average Chicago entry-level software engineering salaries on ZipRecruiter: $62,867

Google, LinkedIn, Salesforce, and Lyft all have offices there, and there are many other great tech companies to work for in Chicago. According to CompTIA’s Cyberstates 2019 report, Chicago is already one of the largest tech employers in the country, meaning Flatiron’s Chicago grads enter a bustling and bright tech industry.

Graduates from the Chicago Software Engineering program in our 2020 Jobs Report, like Seattle, average salaries much higher than other entry-level engineers throughout the city. Flatiron grads who accepted full-time roles within the reporting earned an average starting salary of $75,375, which is $12,508 more than the $62,867 average salary for other engineers.

Denver grad salaries vs. the local market

Average Denver Flatiron starting salaries: $66,839
Average Denver entry-level software engineering salaries on ZipRecruiter: $67,766

In 2019 we wrote an entire report about the future of the tech industry in Denver. What we found was striking: Q3 2018 tech growth in the city was almost 8%, more than double the education industry, the city’s second-fastest-growing sector. After San Jose, Seattle, and San Francisco, Denver has the 4th-highest software developer jobs per 1,000 in the country.

Fortunately, that means our Denver Software Engineering grads are in line to benefit from so many opportunities. In our 2020 Jobs Report, the average salary for Denver grads who accepted full-time roles within the reporting period was $66,839. Again, that’s in line with the average entry-level Denver software engineer salary, which is $67,766 according to ZipRecruiter

Our 2020 Jobs Report shows that Flatiron School graduates are graduating and finding jobs with good, industry-standard salaries if not better. For the 7th straight year, we’re extremely proud of our students for committing to a new life and succeeding — especially in 2020.

Interested in making a similar change? Read how to become a web developer in 2021. Or jump right in and apply to learn the skills to become a software engineer, either on-campus or online.

View our entire 2020 Jobs Report here.

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Nicholas Gallinelli

Content Marketing Manager

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