A web developer who left his job with a company with little to show for his hard work says he’s still not satisfied with the compensation he’s receiving.
“The only reason I’m here is because of this company, and they are still paying me $500,000 a year,” says John Lee.
Lee’s company, Wieden + Kennedy, is one of several in the U.S. that provide a variety of services, including code development and web design, to companies looking for someone to help build their applications.
But the web developer says the pay has gone downhill over the past few years.
“I’ve been working for them for five years, and this last year was probably the worst year of my life,” Lee said.
Lee quit his job at a major software company, after working on a few other projects for a couple of years.
Lee says the company did a good job with the work, but that his salary hasn’t kept up with his expenses.
“They have a pretty good base salary, but we were getting paid a little more than what we needed to live on,” he said.
While Lee says he doesn’t want to complain too much about the company, he’s also not entirely happy about how much money is being offered.
“A company that pays you $500k a year for six months?
That’s ridiculous,” he told NBC News.
“If I was working for a company that was paying $200,000, I’d have a problem.”
Lee’s experience underscores a key point about the rise of the gig economy: the pay is often lower than the company wants to pay.
“People will go into a gig economy and they will find an opportunity, and the pay isn’t going to be that much lower than they thought,” says Jessica Pimentel, a freelance web developer.
“And that’s kind of why it’s so hard for people to keep their jobs.”
For many people, the experience of working in a gig will be an opportunity to improve their career, Pimentels said.
But for others, the job is a temporary way to make extra money.
“You have no control over what you do, so you are not in control of what you don’t do,” Lee added.