Why you should work at Burson-Marsteller on my team

The job app for an opening on my team went up a few days ago (March 2017), here: http://chj.tbe.taleo.net/chj05/ats/careers/requisition.jsp?org=BM&cws=1&rid=1694

It’s in downtown DC, close to a Metro stop. We plan to find a mid-career developer and pay mid-career developer rates.

What’s are we doing?
The job is mostly backend development, Ubuntu-Nginx-Postgres-Django. So UNPD or DUNP or UPDN or something like that. It’s a hybrid of data work, application development, data science and a cloud component. We use AWS with a variety of server and service types. Developers are learning more about how to do server admin in order to deal with AWS and server administrators are learning more about application development, a phenomena called DevOps*. (*because I say so. aficionados think DevOps is a cultural shift in IT departments, too.) We are down to one on-premise server and that’s the way we like it.

Whats the team look like?
We are doing what I call sincere scrum. You may be more familiar with the “yeah-right” software development process, where someone dictates SDLC and the team and management say “yeah right, we’ll do that”. Part of getting team members autonomy is having some clarity around roles. At the moment, we have a clear Product Owner (my supervisor), a Scrum Master (myself), a server administrator and a front end developer.

So what the heck is a scrum master? By the agile textbook, I’m in charge of facilitating the daily status reports, curating the ticket database, but I don’t primarily choose what features we implement. The product owner decides what features are going to make the team money.

Scrum (and especially ‘Extreme Programming’) have some opinions about practices, such as the need for unit testing, build servers, source control etc. I’m also the build master, which means, we have a build server & a build script that automatically compiles, lints, and runs tests. If you haven’t worked on an application with a suite of unit tests, it makes maintenance development far less stressful. New bugs and breaks are found fast and can be fixed fast. Build script driven development also means when it comes time to do testing with live humans or code review with live humans, time is spent on higher level concepts instead of nuisance bugs.

The team is distributed between DC and NYC. We don’t mind if team members work a day a week at home.

What are the cool technologies?
On top of a cake of data work and application development, for frosting we get to work with social media APIs, a huge multinode Redshift database, REDIS, data science libraries like scikit-learn, pandas and so on. Many of our app’s components do huge data pulls that feed datascience reports. The cost of data and the cost of statistical prediction has come way down in the last few years and we are exploiting that to do AI-like or magic-like predictions and analysis.

So throw your resume into the pile and our HR department will get to me:

NB: I don’t speak for Burson-Marsteller. I just happen to work there and we have a job opening on our team.

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