Developer

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Key facts

Salary
£53,097 FTE, based on a 35 hour full-time working week
Contract
Permanent
Location
UK, remote or hybrid in London or Leeds if desired, with potential for some national travel at times

We’re looking for mid-level developers to join our team. You should have experience building modern production software and an interest in learning new languages and stacks as you go. This is an open role and candidates will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

We’re hiring a number of technology roles right now, so if this one isn’t a good fit for you, take a look at our careers page for our other openings.

About us

dxw has been around since 2008, working with the public and third sectors to create services and products that improve lives – things like helping to track aid spending and looking at how to improve digital collaboration between local authorities.

As well as making life better for the people who use public services and the teams that run them, we care a lot about being a great place to work and grow. Last year we became employee-owned, which means that a trust owns 90% of our shares on behalf of all current and future dxw staff, and staff get to influence the direction of the company and share in its profits. We’ve incorporated our mission and values into the trust deeds too, so dxw must also be run in the interests of the people who use the services we build.

We work remotely with people based all around the UK. We keep in touch all the time for work and for social things, and some of us get together in person in our Leeds HQ and coworking spaces in London when we can.

If you care about making public services better then dxw is the place for you!

About the role

This is a hands-on programming role. You’ll develop web applications and services in multidisciplinary project teams with a range of clients in various stages of digital transformation.

You’ll work with other developers, but also designers, user researchers, delivery managers, and many other specialisms from dxw, our partners, and our clients. Sometimes you’ll work on teams with as few as two technologists, building prototypes and exploring solutions. Other times you’ll work on large projects with four or five developers and up to ten others from a wide range of other disciplines delivering production-ready software to members of the public.

As well as delivering software, you’ll participate in user research sessions, design workshops, and a number of activities carried out by your teams to help understand the problems and design and implement the right solutions.

As a mid-level developer (see our different seniority levels in our progression framework), you’ll work from high level stories to deliver features independently. You’ll review other developers’ code and feed into the design of the systems you work on.

We work in an agile way (but we don’t follow it too strictly) and hope to inspire our clients with our practices. You and your teams will work alongside our clients to write and prioritise work. You’ll take part in sprint retrospective meetings and you’ll present your work at show and tell sessions including wider stakeholders.

Usually, we work on projects for only a small part of their lifecycle and, in those cases, you’ll take part in building a shared understanding of any work done on a service before us and when we reach the end, you’ll work with your team to hand what we’ve done over to our client or other suppliers.

We try to use the right technology for the problem at hand. Here are some of the things our delivery teams have worked with recently:

  • Ruby and Ruby on Rails
  • TypeScript and Express
  • React
  • Python and Wagtail
  • Kotlin
  • PostgreSQL
  • Git and GitHub
  • AWS, Docker, and Terraform

We don’t expect you to have experience with everything in that list. Most of our people specialise in one of Ruby, Python, or JavaScript, but you don’t need to have worked with any of those before. You can pick up particular skills and tools as you need them, and we’re eager to help you learn.

As a member of the technology discipline at dxw, you’ll be involved in team and whole company away days, regular team forums and discussions, incident reviews, and other team activities.

You’ll also have opportunities to coach and mentor your less experienced colleagues if you’d like them. When you have downtime during and between projects, you’ll work with others on the team to build and maintain our internal software and tools — the things that make our work better or more efficient across clients — and help identify opportunities to make things better.

As a mid-level developer at dxw, you’ll have plenty of room to grow. We publish our progression framework openly. Take a look if you’re interested in what the other roles in the technology discipline look like. We’ll encourage and support your growth as much as you need, but we also won’t push you towards advancement you don’t want.

About you

You’ve worked on at least one software project that has had contact with the public and understand some of the challenges involved in the development of live services.

You enjoy variety in your work, like the idea of working on a series of different projects in different domains, and are comfortable working through fuzzy problems.

You have a solid understanding of how to write production software, working knowledge of version control software like Git, and know or are willing to learn some of the other technologies we use as you need them on the job. You write tests as a normal part of your work and document and share the things you learn with others.

You understand the importance of secure coding practices. All technologists receive security training when they join the team.

Our public sector work means that appointments will be made subject to a background check and you must be living in and eligible to work in the UK.

Join us!

We committed to making our teams as diverse as we can and to creating an environment where everyone feels included and can be themselves. We welcome non-traditional paths into the development profession and aim to hire the right person for the role, not the right combination of technical keywords. We especially encourage candidates historically excluded from technology to apply, including but not limited to people of colour, women and people whose gender doesn’t always align neatly with “man” or “woman”, parents and carers, people with visible and invisible disabilities and atypical neurotypes, and people who didn’t go to university.

For more information about dxw, visit our website or our Playbook where we document the ways we work, our values, and our commitments to sustainable pace and openness.

How will the hiring process work?

We use a system called Applied for hiring to try and remove as much bias from selecting someone as we can.

You don’t need a CV or cover letter. Instead, we’ll ask you to provide written answers to a few short questions related to the work you’d do on the job (an approach backed up by research). Hopefully, this gives you some idea of the sorts of things you’ll be doing and helps us understand how you’d approach these aspects of work.

Your answers are then anonymised and shuffled up with other candidates’ and reviewed by some of our team, including staff with a variety of backgrounds and experience levels. We then create a shortlist based on their scoring. Up until we’ve picked the shortlist, the people making the decisions won’t know anything about you other than how you answered the questions and how your reviewers scored you, so we can’t be influenced by anything else; we won’t even know your name!

We then invite shortlisted candidates to a structured interview with 3 members of the team, who score your answers independently before discussing them with each other. We send everyone invited to interview an overview of the topics we’ll cover in advance so you can come prepared. We don’t want to catch you out; we want to find out what you know and what and how you think.

Depending on the number of applicants, we sometimes then ask all promising candidates to do a 2-3 hour work simulation with a member of the team. This is a little like a code test, but is more focused on how you approach a problem than what answers you give. The work simulation usually ends with some form of presentation, often in the form of a technical show and tell with a few of our team and you’ll have a chance to ask them questions, too, if you’d like!

We send all candidates feedback on applications, based on the scores given in the review stages.

This process has less focus on your background and what you’ve done before than it does on what you know and can do now. But please let us know if you think we’ve missed the mark or can make it better by emailing Ellie, our HR Administrator, at recruitment@dxw.com. Your comments will be kept anonymous.

Benefits include

  • Annual £1000 personal learning and development allowance
  • Interest-free season ticket loans and cycle to work scheme
  • Up to 18 weeks of paid parental leave depending on your situation
  • 25 days holiday plus bank holidays
  • Pension with up to 5% matching employer contribution
  • Flexible working
  • Macbook and home office setup budget

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