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Stripe employees being tempted away by flashy AI jobs at OpenAI and Anthropic

Stripe has been the place-to-be in technology for some time, but in the past year, AI research firms like OpenAI and Anthropic have been on the fast track to overtake it. In 2024, the two firms have been going after talent from the fintech.

Stripe developers are leaving for the two firms. OpenAI's hires include Stripe principal engineer Jonah Cohen who joined in December to work on platform integrity. Anthropic hired Stripe staff engineer Robert Heaton, as a research engineer in its security division.

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OpenAI has taken more of an interest in Stripe's data science team. Data science manager Eric Kramer, and data scientists Alex Knittel and Michael Musson joined in the past three months, each spending at least three years at Stripe. Anthropic, meanwhile, has pursued non-technical staff like former head of talent pipelines, Hannah Pritchett, now Anthropic's head of people.

Employees at OpenAI seem to enjoy being there more. On jobs forum Blind it's rated 4.5 stars compared to Stripe's 3.5. Reviews in 2023 repeatedly praise the "impactful work" at OpenAI, while Stripe has been called "annoyingly political." Both, however, seem to have a very high intensity culture and challenging (if we're being polite) work life balances.

On average, OpenAI pays much more. Data from suggests average total compensation at OpenAI in 2023 was $912k, with an average salary of just over $300k. The highest reported total compensation was $1.37m, though $1m of that was stock. Stripe's average total compensation was just over $370k, however not only does it have significantly more datapoints, it also more consistently hires graduate talent. The fintech's principal software engineers earn $940.7k on average and its highest earner on Levels last year reported earnings of $1.36 million.

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AUTHORAlex McMurray Editor
  • Fi
    FinServ Sourcing
    20 February 2024

    I think this is such an interesting topic. Seeing the companies for the last decade that have been leading the industry in comp finally be beaten out by AI companies now makes me think about the shift in talent attraction strategy that will be needed now for them for really the first time. Anthropic and OpenAI I'm sure will not be the last newer AI focused companies stood up. How will we all reassess our strategies to attract those forward thinking/cutting edge leaders and employees in the industry outside of the new shiny car of AI focused organizations.

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