Network Tech Developer

  • Apply by: 10th March, 2018
  • Start by mid-April or ASAP
  • Location: Any Europe or Africa time zones
  • Full time position
  • Reports to the Tech Director
  • Remote work, some offices available

Overview of the position

The Online Progressive Engagement Network (www.the-open.net) seeks a full-time web developer to provide direct service to four NGOs in Europe and Africa focused on social, economic, and environmental justice. We are looking for a mid-level full-stack developer with expertise in Git, skilled in web frameworks like Ruby on Rails, and comfortable managing a few different deployments at once of the same or similar tools.

Your job will be to contribute to the development of a suite of purpose-built organising tools developed in this global network of progressive organisations, and manage deployments for four specific groups.

We are committed to providing fair pay and a healthy work culture, a collaborative work environment, opportunities for international travel, and great opportunities to grow as a developer. Women, minorities, people with disabilities, LGBTIQ individuals, and others from traditionally marginalised backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.

Email tech@the-open.net to apply.

Background on the OPEN network tech program

OPEN is a network of 20 organisations, each an independent, non-profit, nationally-based organisation working on multiple issues, but all sharing a common set of values and a general strategic orientation. Groups in the network tend to work on human rights, women's rights, climate change, economic fairness, strengthening democracy, and empowering individual people to lift their voices to make change in their community and their country. And we all conduct this activism using largely digital tools, like outreach on email and social media, common tactics like online petitions, calls to parliament, organising offline protests and actions, and volunteering in our communities. Read more about the network and our core organising DNA.

Each organisation has a tech director, manager or coordinator who helps the organisation make decisions about what tools the organisation needs to do the work. Some of the larger organisations have teams of 3 or 4 software developers, and have built their own tools that suit our needs and our use cases better than available commercial tools, to the point that even new organisations are looking to run these custom tools, and each one needs a developer to make that work. OPEN facilitates this collaborative model of software development and delivery, largely on Github and Slack, but also on email, via annual summits (4 this year, including a Tech Summit), staff exchanges, and more.

Responsibilities

Manage deployments of a set of organising tools on behalf of four organisations based in the EU and Africa, with support from our Lead Engineer, project maintainers, and a community of developers across a dozen countries and organisations. The four organisations you'll be working with are using or want to start using some set of the following tools:

  1. Identity (a Rails app), a data warehouse, mass email and SMS tool.

  2. Speakout (a Padrino/Ruby app), a public-facing tool for citizens to contact decision-makers like members of parliament, to conduct surveys, and accept online donations from members.

  3. Some groups may wish to deploy more advanced tools for volunteer organising and voter contact, such as Spoke (Github), an open source peer-to-peer messaging tool built with React/Nodejs, and Kooragang (Github), an open source Express/Nodejs app for phonebanking with volunteers and staff.

  4. A basic WordPress site, some reporting tool like Metabase, and other standardised tools.

All of these tools are maintained by other organisations in the network, so you won't have to maintain them, just use them, deploy them, and contribute to them from time to time.

You'll be a part of a global team working together to build and enhance this suite of organising tools, but your overriding responsibility will be as the person responsible for maintaining healthy deployments of these tools for all four groups – each with their own language, political context, culture, and organising priorities. We hope this sounds like an exciting challenge!

You'll make sure all four organisations have relatively up-to-date deployments of the tools, that their organising needs are being met with bugfixes and feature development, and contribute to the overall health of the collaboration by refactoring, writing tests, building security features, writing documentation.

About you

  • We hope you will enjoy working on a small team (the OPEN tech team is 2.5 people), but having a ton of colleagues (about 30 devs across the network, and 400 staff total).

  • You're a mid-level developer ready to learn a lot. You know how to lean on your colleagues and your community to navigate setup for a tool they built, even in an unfamiliar framework.

  • You are excited for the opportunity to work with people from different countries – different cultural backgrounds and political perspectives facing different challenges in their home countries – all trying to make the their world a better place.

  • You like details; you like getting it right; you feel a bit protective. When an organisation puts their trust in you to keep their website up and make sure their communications go out as planned, you value that and respect it.

  • You know how to keep things in perspective to manage priorities and keep big tasks moving forward. Attentive to the needs of your orgs, but you know how to stay in flow when you're doing something important.

Skills and experience

  • Git is a huge part of our lives. You'll need to be comfortable navigating between master and stable, feature branches, hotfixes, and sometimes managing short-lived deployment branches for different organisations. Rebase, cherry-pick, tag a release – you should be able to do these things easily, and even teach them. And besides, if you are comfortable with Git, you can learn the rest of the code base by reviewing code changes as they come in.

  • Rails, other MVC frameworks like Django, other Ruby frameworks like Sinatra or Padrino. The tools we're working with are, in some ways, quite standard MVC apps, so any MVC familiarity should provide a solid base for learning the rest.

  • Javascript. If you aren't excellent with Javascript yet, you can be! If you're a general-purpose programmer who enjoys learning, this should be fine. You won't have to do a lot of original feature dev on our NodeJS tools, but they will be a part of your life, as will ES6 classes and React-style front-end components.

  • Development Operations. Needless to say, if you are managing deployments for four organisations, you're going to want to be solid with things like CI, build tools, Docker and/or Heroku, etc. We do maintain Docker builds and CI tools where we need them, but the more experience you have with DevOps tools and practices, the more time you can spend on enhancing the tools and building the features that help us do better activism.

Compensation

Final pay for this position will be determined based on location, cost of living, and cost of employment in your region/country. We use a pay formula that adjusts pay based on cost of living, but still averages with a baseline salary to account for the fact that things like computers and plane tickets often cost the same (or even more) in less expensive countries.

Here are some sample salary amounts for what a well-qualified mid-level developer with 3-5 years experience in the relevant areas could expect to earn for different cities. Actual pay will vary based on your fit for the role. These amounts are for total package amount / gross pay as a contractor, so, for example, if your take-home pay is €40,000, but income taxes and pension payments in your country come to 50% of total salary costs, the amount listed below would say €60,000.

  • Johannesburg, Warsaw, Budapest: €35,500 to 47,000 / yr

  • Edinburgh, Vienna: €47,000 to 62,000 / yr

  • Stockholm, London, Dublin, Amsterdam, Paris: €51,000 to 68,000 / yr

  • Berlin: €46,000 to 61,000 / yr

  • Cape Town: €43,000 to 57,000 / yr

  • Madrid, Belfast: €45,000 to 59,000 / yr

  • Bucharest, Cluj: €30,000 to 41,000 / yr

(For a more senior candidate, we might also offer the same overall pay for 4 days/wk employment.)

How to apply

Email tech@the-open.net with a resume or CV and a little about why you'd like to work with us.