Polygence Overview: High school students spend over 4,000 hours being lectured at, despite overwhelming evidence that students learn best through project-based learning. Polygence is an online marketplace for intellectual passion projects that was built with a singular focus on helping students rediscover the joy of learning through personalized projects supervised by academic mentors.
Polygence’s rapid growth has been driven by a top-notch team of entrepreneurs, engineers, researchers and educators united by an uncompromising mission to reshape education around the globe by making it project-focused. At Polygence, the ultimate surge of adrenaline comes from hearing our students rave about their learning experience and describe its life-changing impact.
Position Overview: Polygence is seeking its first Chief Technology Officer to oversee the entire engineering department in Budapest and beyond. Our number one core value is “students first” and we need a leader who embodies the same values to build increasingly exceptional experiences for our students at new scales.
Reporting to our founder and CEO, you will lead the Engineering department and work on complex technical challenges —in close collaboration with the Product, Design and Data teams — to ensure we drive the right outcomes and priorities for our students, their families and educators.
As an engineering leader and senior leader of the function, you’ll build and manage our core engineering teams. You’ll bring world-class expertise, practices, and tools to an already high-caliber team. You’ll help define and promulgate high standards and expectations for our software engineers. And you’ll work closely with your own team of fellow executives to steer and manage our enterprise as a whole.
In this role, you have the technical expertise to collaborate and direct software engineering initiatives. Your principal responsibility, however, is to hire, manage, and set up the engineering organization for success at a senior leadership level. You’ll drive the delivery of our product development and will coordinate across departments on a day-to-day basis.
In the first 3 months, you will....
- Get to know and build deep trust with our Budapest-based engineering team and Head of Engineering.
- Work closely with our Head of Engineering to develop a clear vision on how to scale up our engineering team across two continents.
- Work with the Head of Engineering on our current roadmap and OKRs to accelerate delivery.
- Drive product and technology reviews in conjunction with Engineering and Product Leaders and senior stakeholders.
- Ensure teams are accountable, have clear priorities and adequate resources.
- Be encouraging, supportive, kind, fun, sensitive, honest, and above all, a great teacher.
In your first 6 months, you will…
- Hire and cultivate a small team of engineers in the Bay Area focused on mission-critical development that requires in-time-zone collaboration (e.g. growth marketing and data reporting functionalities).
- Build and strengthen our engineering management practices to integrate the Bay Area team with the rest of the Budapest-based engineering team
- Support our Budapest-based Head of Engineering in scaling up the local team further.
- Define and communicate an engineering vision for the next several quarters of development
- Effectively scale the software development lifecycle
In your first year, you will…
- Be a key partner to the executive team by informing our strategic and product roadmaps, identifying inefficiencies, and implementing methods to streamline execution across the company.
- Building out a functionally complete engineering organization, including hiring goals
- Accountability to department level SLOs and OKRs
- The continuous delivery of high visibility capabilities and superpowers for our platform
- Defines changes to system architecture to improve system performance and scale.
You’ll thrive in this role, if you...
- Love working in the start-up space. You will have a high-degree of autonomy and will be expected to operate in a fast-paced environment.
- Hands-on technical expertise with frontend and backend development (overlap with our Django/React stack is a plus, but not necessary) and scaling software architectures (primarily AWS/Heroku). You should not expect to code on a daily basis, but the ability to fix an urgent bug or build a proof-of-concept is strongly preferred.
- A talent for listening for opportunities to help coworkers and ability to build highly effective personal relationships in an online environment.
- Experience managing managers
- Agile project management skills
- Are unflabble by nature. You stay calm and provide leadership under pressure.
- Owner mentality
- Can work and communicate across various time zones and cross-functionally.
- Share our mission in making education project-based and passion-driven.
- Medical: Aetna PPO & Kaiser HMO
- Dental: Guardian
- Vision: Guardian
- Employees work directly with their manager to schedule time off as needed
- 11 scheduled holidays
- Employee Referral Program