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This startup uses data to help tech workers get the pay they deserve

In the tech industry, a rigid internal system of job levels determines how much responsibility employees have and how much they get paid. But this system is often opaque, proprietary to each company, and hard to understand for workers, who can be left in the dark as to how their level is impacting their career path and their compensation.

That’s why a site called Levels.fyi uses crowdsourced data to create transparent leveling charts that track how levels at one company correspond to levels at another and how compensation within each company’s level varies. For its founders, the goal is to provide more transparency within the tech industry to help people understand where they stand currently, help them negotiate new job offers, and ultimately ensure that they’re being paid what they’re due—a historic problem within tech, particularly for women and people from underrepresented backgrounds.

“I think companies intentionally want to keep a lot of this information hidden and asymmetric. It’s obviously in their favor if they don’t disclose the full information to candidates,” says Zuhayeer Musa, one of Levels.fyi’s cofounders. “Our site is powerful because we help candidates [glean] this information so they can use it to negotiate and make sure they’re getting paid fairly.”

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