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Senior Software Engineer

In a nutshell:

We believe a positive organizational approach and culture can drive positive change in the world. IDEO is at the forefront of this movement and is creating products that help leaders build more creative organizations, and support creative teams do their best work. We are looking for a Senior Software Engineer to join our team and help us build and evolve our design and innovation management products.

Why is this role important for IDEO’s work?

The Senior Software Engineer lead is a critical member to the evolution of our core products: Creative Difference and Shape. We need your help overseeing our internal development team, streamlining the products and iterating on features. You’ll be making strategic technology decisions, helping manage workflows and acting as a liaison between engineering and product design. It is a small team with a big goal.

Once here you will:

  • Lead and collaborate with cross-functional teams to explore, prototype, and define end-to-end strategy for products
  • Advise on strategic technology choices to improve the product and development processes
  • Architect, build, and launch new features for our products, coding on a daily basis
  • Arrange project builds and processes: guide, educate, and prepare teams for deployments
  • Help decide what talent to bring in-house (who to hire) and when to partner; how to develop our capabilities and what to stay away from
  • Work with a data analyst to analyze and provide solutions to data questions
  • Collaborate with other developers via code reviews and pair programming sessions
  • Work closely with Product Marketing, Developers, and Designers on the design, to uncover new customer needs, prioritize tasks, and implement new features 
  • Use prototyping to identify powerful value propositions and figure out how to execute on them
  • Work on the full application stack: front-end user application, back-end API, administration, and data modeling 

What does IDEO offer you?

IDEO is a place unlike any other. It’s a place where you can solve diverse, complex challenges for our clients or the organization, alongside thoughtful, intelligent individuals who lead with curiosity, empathy, and optimism. Sure we work hard, but we also intentionally craft moments that allow our community to pause, create, and connect. We encourage our community to bring their whole selves to work, respect the need for work-life balance, and allow for autonomy in the design process and your career.

Some previous projects to check out:

Here are some samples from our Design for Change Studio:

Designing a Global Plan for Disaster Response

Designing a School System from the Ground Up

And here some examples of IDEO’s portfolio of Products and Services:  OI Engine, Creative Difference, IDEO U, OpenIDEO

Relevant experience:

Must Haves

  • Fluency and comfort working with: 
    • Javascript and React (or other Javascript frameworks)
    • Ruby on Rails
    • Databases (SQL, data modeling, optimization)
    • Automated testing (e.g. RSpec, Jest, Cypress)
    • Git
  • Strong leadership and communication skills and the ability to teach others
  • Ability to collaborate well with engineers, designers, and clients
  • Skilled at defining and prioritizing product features
  • Able to easily dive in, understand, and build on an existing codebase
  • A passion for readable, extensible, and simple code.
  • Experience managing teams of 3+ individuals of diverse backgrounds towards a common goal
  • You have experience balancing the development of new features, with the need to keep products simple and elegant.
  • You understand and empathize with the challenges that growing startups and larger organizations have staying productive, creative, and engaging.
  • Experience using agile (or similar approaches) to develop products


  • BS / MS in computer science or related engineering field
  • Stay current with latest development best practices -- able to share industry insights with the team and provide input on process and/or architectural decisions
  • Experience refactoring large codebases or building out service components
  • Interest in ML/AI/data science - algorithms, modeling, TensorFlow, etc
  • Going from coding to a brainstorm then diving back into code is the perfect day
  • Contributing to great visual design alongside world-class designers sounds blissful
  • You’re excited to be at IDEO, learn more about Design Thinking, and work amongst super creative people
  • Experience using design thinking to solve complex problems
  • Expertise in machine learning and AI

Application requirements and instructions:

Please apply with a resume, cover letter (yes, we read all cover letters), and some sample of past work.  This could be in the form of a website, a portfolio, a case study, etc.  

Equal Opportunity Employer

IDEO is an equal opportunity employer; applicants are considered for all roles without regard to race, color, religious creed, sex, national origin, citizenship status, age, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, marital, parental, veteran or military status, unfavorable military discharge, or any other status protected by applicable federal, state or local law.

Apply now
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