This is probably not the first machine learning job ad you’ve seen, so we’ve done our best to stand out while also accurately presenting what we’re all about. If it sounds like you would enjoy working with us, don’t hesitate to apply (link at the bottom) or drop us a line with questions on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ahum. Here it comes.
What’s a Silverfin?
At Silverfin we’re trying to apply the promise of software to the age-old industry of accounting. With our SaaS we’re automating a large chunk of the busy-work that accountants are currently handling manually, and are building new tools so they can provide better services to their customers. We aim to optimize their workflow in such a way that accountants can spend more time on the much more impactful and rewarding work of advising their customers, the business owners.
The good news is we’re succeeding in doing exactly that. Every day more than 15.000 financial service professionals use Silverfin to help and advise more than 200.000 businesses. Our customers adore us! The even better news is there’s still plenty left to work on, and that’s where we hope you come in.
What makes the engineering team at Silverfin special?
We’re a remote-first engineering team of 25 people distributed in 14 different countries. A priority for us is maintaining proper work-life balance. We avoid meetings as much as possible, accept deadlines only when absolutely necessary, and never expect anyone to work longer hours than they’ve signed up for. A day in our working lives is pretty boring in this regard, and we feel that’s exactly how it should be.
Working with us means you can be flexible with your schedule. It’s OK to disappear for a few hours in the middle of the day to run some errands, get a haircut, pick up the kids — whatever reason, you don’t need to explain yourself. You also fully decide when you take time off: our team is sufficiently varied and well organized that there are always enough people around to handle the load, and in the rare cases it’s not, we will decrease the load instead of asking people to move their holiday.
Being remote-first means we favor asynchronous communication. We don’t shy away from chatting in Slack, but the important decisions or discussions are done in Gitlab issues, over email, or in our wiki, so there’s a written, persisted record. We’re mindful of maintaining long chunks of focussed time, which means we avoid @-mentions or PMs on Slack, and other triggers and interrupts. We encourage using Slack’s DnD function, especially when you’re not working!
We’d be really happy to welcome you in our #engineering channel, but it’s not just virtual: we make sure we regularly get to see each other in real life too, as long as there’s no pandemic going around. Twice a year we fly the whole engineering team together to a different location in Europe, and at least once a year we join up with the rest of the company so we can spend some time together with the other departments.
Software for accountants is not considered to be very exciting, but we have our fair share of technical challenges. To give you a sense of scale: our database exceeds 7TB, and our largest table recently crossed the 10 billion row mark. We interface with more than 30 different external APIs, and provide third parties an API of our own.
What does working at Silverfin look like?
You’ll take the lead in setting up the product, infrastructure and organisation to do smart things with all the data we have. Make the lives of our users easier. You’ll answer and implement questions like: Can a computer do a senior review based on historical comments? Can we generate suggestions for a tax calculation? Can bankruptcy be predicted before an accountant notices it? You might even come up with a few answerable questions yourself based on analysis of the data at hand. You will take charge of all the processes from data collection, cleaning, and preprocessing, to training models and deploying them to production.
We work in nimble teams of around 5 people in size, with each team taking ownership of a specific set of features of the application. As our first machine learning engineer, you’ll initially be a team of one, and while we expect you to be able to code most of the core parts yourself, you can rely on support from the other engineering and ops teams to integrate and deploy projects to production.
What does your future look like?
Initially you’ll work by yourself, but once things move in the right direction, we’re looking to quickly expand the team with you as the teamlead. You will be called on to help out with recruiting, managing and mentoring the other team members once that time comes.
Everyone has a €1000 yearly budget to spend on conferences, courses, workshops or other training to improve their skills and level up. This also includes accommodation and travel costs. If the conference is on a workday you’ll get paid like any normal day. Silverfin colleagues regularly visit conferences across the world.
What are we looking for?
- You’re experienced in applying machine learning, from proof of concept to a production system. You’re able to both get your hands dirty building models, and integrating what you’ve built into a production system. While our core application is built in Ruby on Rails, it’s probably not well-suited for machine learning projects, and you can suggest a more applicable language based on the project. We’re guessing Python.
- You’re up for mentoring coworkers and can give in-depth, productive feedback during reviews. While you appreciate the small stuff, you recognize bikeshedding and can avoid its pitfalls.
- You’re able to take initiative and push projects forward without being micromanaged.
- You can code with reason and can justify the important decisions you made during development.
- You can communicate clearly in English, both written and verbally.
- You recognize and can apply engineering best practices when relevant. This includes the usual like version control, testing, and refactoring; but you also appreciate hygienic code, good naming, explicitness and readability over cleverness, etc. You’re willing to be flexible and pick-up other practices that the team decides on but you might not agree with.
- You're aware of the trade-offs involved in proper engineering and can make balanced business decisions, keeping in mind all the stakeholders of the project.
What can we offer you?
- The opportunity to build unique projects based on a significant amount of data, on top of a solid product-oriented foundation
- Actual, proper work-life balance
- Choose your own working hours and work 100% remotely
- Personal growth training and opportunities
- The possibility to grow the team and become a teamlead
- Join a distributed remote-first engineering team with 25 colleagues in 14 different countries
- A refreshing work environment with professional, friendly and welcoming colleagues
- A €1000 yearly budget for conferences, courses, workshops or other expenses that will improve your skills
- You have successfully taken a significant machine learning project from concept to production
- At least 2 years of full-time experience with machine learning projects
- Your work hours have some overlap with EU business hours (we require your local timezone to be within CET +/- 3h)
Nice to have’s
These would be nice but are definitely not necessary. Don’t worry if none of the following applies to you.
- Experience as a remote worker in a fully remote team
- Experience in Fintech
- Accounting knowledge
- Read about how our regular development interviewing process looks like (the machine learning engineer job is a bit different, but this should give you some idea)
- Or email us with any questions on email@example.com