Main image of article Top 10 Companies That Computer Science Students Want to Work For

Which companies do computer science students want to work for?

Universum, which focuses on employer branding, has updated its annual list of the most attractive employers for CS students, based on survey data from almost 50,000 respondents in the United States. Google placed first on the list this year, followed by Apple; in fact, the two tech giants have dominated this list for the past three years:

What’s so attractive about working for these tech giants? For starters, technologists at these companies can have an enormous impact. Who wouldn’t want to work on something that potentially impacts the lives of millions or even billions of people? Plus, having a name like “Apple,” “Google,” or “Microsoft” on your resume can make it easier to land jobs at other employers down the road.

There’s also the money factor. The tech giants are famous for paying extraordinarily high software development salaries—and that’s before you consider the world-class benefits and perks. According to, which crowdsources salary data from the biggest tech companies, those Googlers at the L7 level (i.e., senior staff software engineer) can earn an annual salary of up to $270,650 per year, coupled with $406,100 in stock options and a bonus of $81,900. It’s not unusual for senior managers (i.e., those overseeing hundreds of engineers) to land salaries in the seven-figure range.

During periods of lower tech unemployment and intense competition for specialists, these companies will also raise bonuses and maximum salaries. For example, Apple has reportedly paid certain software and hardware engineers more than $200,000 in restricted stock units, known as “special retention grants.” Meanwhile, Amazon has boosted its maximum base pay for technologists and other office workers to $350,000.  

While some of these tech giants have slowed hiring in the face of economic uncertainty, their collective need to deliver huge projects (and products) will ensure a constant churn of employees for years to come. If you’re interested in applying to a big tech company, just be prepared for a marathon process: you’ll face a battery of phone interviews, panel interviews, technical exams, and much more.