Lead Technologist

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Key facts

£78,485 FTE, based on a 35 hour full-time working week
Permanent, full-time or part-time with flexible working options
UK, remote or hybrid in London or Leeds if desired, with potential for some national travel at times
Application deadline

Benefits include

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

    Who we are

    Do you want to help lead a team of software developers to create digital public services that improve lives?

    We’re an employee-owned agency of technology, design and delivery experts who work exclusively with public and third sector organisations to build usable and accessible digital services that fit seamlessly into user’s lives.

    We help organisations like the NHS, the Department for Education, and Citizens Advice spend less money on technology, so that they can spend more on helping the most vulnerable. We aim not only to produce better services, but to radically and permanently improve people’s interactions with government to make it a better instrument of good.

    Recent projects include getting teacher training materials online during COVID, supporting rehabilitation of people leaving prison and many more. We’re also proud to have supported critical national infrastructure, keeping the NHS England website online during the pandemic.

    One of the things that makes us different is that we recently became employee-owned, so we are not beholden to external shareholders, and are protected against being taken over by private equity. It also means we can prioritise being an inclusive employer, reducing our impact on the planet, and working in the open.

    About the development team

    Our development team is currently 24 people from a wide range of backgrounds.

    Our Playbook setting out our approach to development is public, so take a look at:

    As our work is for the public good, we like to publish all of the code that we write. We also try to use the right technology for the problem at hand, for example: here is our Ruby on Rails code for the department of Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, we used Python for The National Archives, and we publish our Typescript and Kotlin code for the Ministry of Justice.

    About the role

    This is a technical leadership role. As a senior member of the dxw technology team, you’ll be bringing technical and non-technical parts of our delivery teams together and making sure our clients have a clear understanding of what we’re building and why. You’ll help teams set their strategy for projects, making sure work aligns with technical principles.

    Within our technology leadership team, we have three threads of work: 

    Leading Development: being hands on in a project team, usually as the technical lead but sometimes as an experienced practitioner.

    Technical Architecture: working across multiple projects at once, helping design high level systems, reviewing documents and designs created by other people, and generally helping teams work out what the right thing to do is and when to do it.

    Engineering Management: line management, setting dxw’s technology strategy, supporting the technology team as a whole, shaping work and helping to schedule the right people to it.

    We want to make sure that as a team we have all these skills, but we don’t expect everyone to be brilliant at all of these, and we’ll tailor your role to your strengths. 

    As a Lead Technologist, you’ll also usually be a line manager. It might be your first time supporting another person in this way, and you’ll have the support to learn how to do a good job of it.

    About you

    You want to deliver public digital services that improve the lives of the people who need them.

    You’ve worked on at least one software project that has had contact with the public and understand many 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 demonstrated aspects of leadership in the past, perhaps as a line manager or a technical lead.

    You work in a supportive way, helping others solve problems through curiosity, but also offer your experience when appropriate.

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

    Working with us

    We have people based all around the UK. Some of us work almost entirely remotely, whilst others get together in person in our Leeds HQ and our London office in King’s Cross. We provide Macbooks and use Slack and Google apps to work together.

    We’re 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 technology and aim to hire the right person for the role, not some combination of keywords. We especially encourage candidates historically excluded from technology to apply.

    Our public sector work means that appointments will be made subject to a background check and you must be located and eligible to work in the UK at the point of application. Unfortunately we are currently unable to offer visa sponsorship.

    How to apply

    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.

    Our tech team will review them without knowing who you are, and if you score well we’ll invite you to a structured interview, and then a work simulation – no whiteboard exercises!