Apple paying out up to $200K in stock bonuses to select engineers

Posted:
in General Discussion
Apple has doled out another round of special stock bonuses to a small group of engineers in an effort to retain talent and keep employees from leaving.

Apple Park
Apple Park


The bonuses have been paid out in recent days to a select number of staffers in its software and hardware engineering departments, Bloomberg reported Friday. The rewards range from $100,000 to more than $200,000 in restricted stock units.

Internally, some employees call the bonuses "special retention grants." They're reportedly designed to keep employees on board by vesting over several years. The bonuses are meant to prevent poaching and defection to other tech companies.

The shares could also become even more valuable if Apple's stock price continues to rise. Over the past 12 months, Apple shares are up 40%, though they're down slightly in 2022 because of a broader tech selloff.

Apple last offered these kinds of bonuses to engineers in December. However, the bonuses doled out in March 2022 were given to a smaller number of engineers than those in December.

In addition to the corporate moves, Apple has also been making similar pushes to retain retail talent. The company is preparing pay raises and other benefits to workers at Apple Stores to prevent employees leaving in a tough job market.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 14
    And in other news, some employers gave employees raises, some didn't.
    jas99byronlFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 2 of 14
    Apple: ”Hmm, we got all these billions. Not sure what to do with this … we just bought a ton of startups earlier today. What now?”
    Employees: ”How about showing us some appreciation for once?”
    Apple: ”Well … a few select, extremely vital people can get a little bit of our money, to make sure we don’t encounter an engineering resource crisis”.

    Employees: ”Really? That’s your move? *Leaves for Twitter, Microsoft and startups*”
    lkruppbyronlgrandact73
  • Reply 3 of 14
    Apple: ”Hmm, we got all these billions. Not sure what to do with this … we just bought a ton of startups earlier today. What now?”
    Employees: ”How about showing us some appreciation for once?”
    Apple: ”Well … a few select, extremely vital people can get a little bit of our money, to make sure we don’t encounter an engineering resource crisis”.

    Employees: ”Really? That’s your move? *Leaves for Twitter, Microsoft and startups*”
    Cynics! The tech industry is extremely competitive and Apple's way of gaining and retaining top notch talent is no different than other tech notables!

    mwhitetwokatmewjas99byronl
  • Reply 4 of 14
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 6,006member
    Apple: ”Hmm, we got all these billions. Not sure what to do with this … we just bought a ton of startups earlier today. What now?”
    Employees: ”How about showing us some appreciation for once?”
    Apple: ”Well … a few select, extremely vital people can get a little bit of our money, to make sure we don’t encounter an engineering resource crisis”.

    Employees: ”Really? That’s your move? *Leaves for Twitter, Microsoft and startups*”
    Jealous much?


    mwhitejas99
  • Reply 5 of 14
    Fred257Fred257 Posts: 210member
    That’s it? What a joke… In Silicon Valley that will get you a popsicle…
  • Reply 6 of 14
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,160member
    Fred257 said:
    That’s it? What a joke… In Silicon Valley that will get you a popsicle…
    So I’m guessing you would tell Apple to shove it and refuse to accept it, right?
    jas99
  • Reply 7 of 14
    dewmedewme Posts: 4,531member
    This is a great move by Apple.

    Based on my personal experience and the vast majority of engineers that I've worked with, engineers typically derive a great deal of satisfaction from the following, roughly in order of priority:

    - Being treated respectfully, equitably, and professionally 
    - Engaging in work that they actually enjoy doing
    - Being recognized for their individual and team-based contributions
    - Being fully supported by their management and leadership teams
    - Having all of the tools that they need to do their job available to them 
    - Being able to work on exciting and interesting projects that yield results they are proud to be associated with
    - Being able to learn new things, acquire new skills, and attain expertise
    - Having upward mobility whether they desire to follow a technical track or a management track
    - Being compensated fairly, equitably, and commensurate to their contributions to the company (the $$$ part)

    All of these things are stacked up and tied together like scaffolding to keep engineers fully engaged and happy in their job. The $$$ part is probably not nearly as dominant as most people outside of the engineering profession think it is, especially if there is a competitive market for the skills and experience that the engineer possesses. If any of these pieces are weak, the whole scaffolding will be weaker. But some of these are definitely larger contributors than others.

    Very few engineers will put up with disrespect regardless of how much $$$ you throw their way. But some engineers will "put up with" certain things, like having less upward mobility or even being paid somewhat less than market rates (e.g., engineers working in civil service and government jobs) if all of the other pieces keep them happy enough, but some won't. Everyone has their own weighting and priorities, but it is never just one thing that makes most people happy. 

    Apple's move to kick in some extra cheddar for what I assume are some of its top engineers is, in my opinion, a pat on the back and recognition that they really want to keep those engineers around and keep them happy. Chances are that a lot of them had no plans to leave anyway, but having a big fat thank you in $$$ that will help secure their financial future a little bit more will most definitely enhance their feelings about the company they are working for.

    Oh, by the way, I also believe that everything I mentioned above applies to almost everyone who's invested in any career that spans a significant portion of one's working lifetime, whether it's in engineering or in any other vocation or profession. If it was just a job it might be all about the money, but when it's a career, it's about so much more.
    mobirdrotateleftbytebyronlmuthuk_vanalingamFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 8 of 14
    Fred257Fred257 Posts: 210member
    lkrupp said:
    Fred257 said:
    That’s it? What a joke… In Silicon Valley that will get you a popsicle…
    So I’m guessing you would tell Apple to shove it and refuse to accept it, right?
    What can you buy with 200 grand in Silicon Valley? A popsicle, just like I said before…
  • Reply 9 of 14
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 3,041member
    I know of some Apple employees that are paid so much they don't know what to do with it all and spend it stupidly and recklessly.
    edited March 26 byronl
  • Reply 10 of 14
    Apple: ”Hmm, we got all these billions. Not sure what to do with this … we just bought a ton of startups earlier today. What now?”
    Employees: ”How about showing us some appreciation for once?”
    Apple: ”Well … a few select, extremely vital people can get a little bit of our money, to make sure we don’t encounter an engineering resource crisis”.

    Employees: ”Really? That’s your move? *Leaves for Twitter, Microsoft and startups*”
    Cynics! The tech industry is extremely competitive and Apple's way of gaining and retaining top notch talent is no different than other tech notables!

    it's like that everywhere for engineers.  Mrs. thequick works in HR, and people with offers and start dates stop responding to e-mails, and are assumed to go elsewhere.
  • Reply 11 of 14
    dewme said:
    This is a great move by Apple.

    Based on my personal experience and the vast majority of engineers that I've worked with, engineers typically derive a great deal of satisfaction from the following, roughly in order of priority:

    - Being treated respectfully, equitably, and professionally 
    - Engaging in work that they actually enjoy doing
    - Being recognized for their individual and team-based contributions
    - Being fully supported by their management and leadership teams
    - Having all of the tools that they need to do their job available to them 
    - Being able to work on exciting and interesting projects that yield results they are proud to be associated with
    - Being able to learn new things, acquire new skills, and attain expertise
    - Having upward mobility whether they desire to follow a technical track or a management track
    - Being compensated fairly, equitably, and commensurate to their contributions to the company (the $$$ part)

    All of these things are stacked up and tied together like scaffolding to keep engineers fully engaged and happy in their job. The $$$ part is probably not nearly as dominant as most people outside of the engineering profession think it is, especially if there is a competitive market for the skills and experience that the engineer possesses. If any of these pieces are weak, the whole scaffolding will be weaker. But some of these are definitely larger contributors than others.

    Very few engineers will put up with disrespect regardless of how much $$$ you throw their way. But some engineers will "put up with" certain things, like having less upward mobility or even being paid somewhat less than market rates (e.g., engineers working in civil service and government jobs) if all of the other pieces keep them happy enough, but some won't. Everyone has their own weighting and priorities, but it is never just one thing that makes most people happy. 

    Apple's move to kick in some extra cheddar for what I assume are some of its top engineers is, in my opinion, a pat on the back and recognition that they really want to keep those engineers around and keep them happy. Chances are that a lot of them had no plans to leave anyway, but having a big fat thank you in $$$ that will help secure their financial future a little bit more will most definitely enhance their feelings about the company they are working for.

    Oh, by the way, I also believe that everything I mentioned above applies to almost everyone who's invested in any career that spans a significant portion of one's working lifetime, whether it's in engineering or in any other vocation or profession. If it was just a job it might be all about the money, but when it's a career, it's about so much more.
    As an engineer, you're spot on.

    In 33 years of engineering, I've worked for 3 companies, and I've left two companies:  One for it being on rocky financial ground, and the other for writing me up for political reasons.  I quietly got another job, and showed up and gave them 2 weeks notice.  They asked me to stay on for 6 weeks, but I negotiated it to 4 weeks, and never looked back.

    I didn't bring the company crashing down (the engineer's dream of "they can't live without me"), but when you're employee #507 and employee #43,944 wants to make a name for himself, I decided that I was looking for a job when I found that one, and did so.  Oh yeah, Mr. 43,944 didn't make the next cut they had, so there was a little satisfaction there.
    byronl
  • Reply 12 of 14

    Fred257 said:
    That’s it? What a joke… In Silicon Valley that will get you a popsicle…
    I think the proper response is, "Thank you"
    jas99chadbagbyronlFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 13 of 14
    chadbagchadbag Posts: 1,796member
    Of course, such moves as RSUs for a few people, can have a negative effect on those who didn’t rate and didn’t get any.   

    A good solid middle level engineer who didn’t get any might easily say, Apple doesn’t need me, obviously, and start looking elsewhere.   This happens enough and it has an affect on Apple’s ability to execute its plans.  


    byronl
  • Reply 14 of 14
    dewmedewme Posts: 4,531member
    chadbag said:
    Of course, such moves as RSUs for a few people, can have a negative effect on those who didn’t rate and didn’t get any.   

    A good solid middle level engineer who didn’t get any might easily say, Apple doesn’t need me, obviously, and start looking elsewhere.   This happens enough and it has an affect on Apple’s ability to execute its plans.  


    This is where the company’s culture and management style really come into play. If the workers feel as though the culture is aligned around rewarding merit, achievement, and delivering on goals there should not be a problem. If the culture is aligned around politics and personal relationships, the negative impact on those who are not singled out for superior performance will be profound. 

    Engineering education, like many professions, has a lot of ground to cover in a fairly short period of time. Unfortunately the heavy load of math, physics, and foundational engineering topics (statics, dynamics, thermodynamics, etc.), leaves little time or curriculum space for exposing students to topics such as understanding how cognitive biases impact logical thought processing or the whole notion of recognizing and dealing with one’s own emotional intelligence (EQ). This leads to some engineers being very technically proficient but neophytes when it comes to dealing with emotional and social situations.

    Then there’s the observation by leaders like Steve Jobs in his Cringely interview:

    “ In most businesses, the difference between average and good is at best 2 to 1, right? Like, if you go to New York and you get the best cab driver in the city, you might get there 30% faster than with an average taxicab driver. A 2 to 1 gain would be pretty big.

    The difference between the best worker on computer hardware and the average may be 2 to 1, if you’re lucky. With automobiles, maybe 2 to 1. But in software, it’s at least 25 to 1. The difference between the average programmer and a great one is at least that.

    The secret of my success is that we have gone to exceptional lengths to hire the best people in the world. And when you’re in a field where the dynamic range is 25 to 1, boy, does it pay off.” - Steve Jobs

    Bottom line is that there are big differences in performance and productivity between engineers. You have to recognize, accept, and live with this fact regardless of which side of the ratio you are on. How you deal with it is up to you. Having a high EQ helps.
    edited March 27 byronlFileMakerFeller
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