Trellis Overview

You may not realize it, but your insurance company knows a lot more about you and your household than even your bank.

At the same time, policyholders frequently face basic problems like inadequate, redundant, or overpriced coverage.

Trellis is a Series A technology start-up building APIs and embedded experiences that empower consumers to safely and easily access, share, and use their personal insurance information to get better-tailored, higher-quality products and services that offer maximum value.

Trellis has backing from multiple top venture capital investors, led by General Catalyst and QED Investors. Trellis is one of the fastest-growing and most profitable companies in the field of insurtech.

If you have car insurance, you can try a demo of Trellis at https://savvy.insure

Quick Facts About Trellis

Founded: March 2019

Founder & CEO: Daniel Demetri

  • 3x fintech start-up exec
  • Co-founder of States Title (now named Doma and exiting via SPAC at a $3B valuation)
  • Led Product Management at online lender Earnest ($XXXM exit to Navient)
  • Previously: Google, Harvard, multiple banks and hedge funds

Vision: Consumer financial services that automatically work in concert to support personal purpose and meaning

Mission: Unlock the full value of the data in consumers' personal insurance accounts

Strategy: Simplify leading carriers’ online purchase experiences (with Trellis Connect), and embed Trellis-powered insurance recommendations (with Savvy) into large digital publishers

Traction: $XXMM of annualized revenue run-rate. Strategic partnerships with multiple Top 10 insurers, multiple top fintechs (e.g. Truebill, Albert, Chime), and multiple large online publishers. Net profitable in 2020.

Key investors: QED Investors (led Series A), General Catalyst (led Series Seed), NYCA Partners

Team size: 32 full-time equivalents (May 2021) and targeting 60+ by end of 2021

Location: 100% remote (US required)

Values:

  1. Extreme Ownership – We fulfill our promises to each other and to our customers. We own our responsibilities 110%.
  2. Speed – We work quickly and pragmatically.
  3. Collaboration – We work transparently, solicit feedback, and leave our egos at the door.
  4. Craft – We do a great job for the sake of it. We’re constantly learning and working at bettering ourselves and the way that we work.
  5. Positivity – We focus on the potential in the world and in each other. We rise to challenges rather than complain about them. We see a cup half full instead of half empty.

Mission of the Director of Engineering

The Director of Engineering will maximize the shots on goal their department can take by ramping up product and engineering velocity. They will motivate and inspire a growing engineering department to complete several critical projects in parallel, making sure to prioritize incremental business value along the way. Directors will often be given ambiguous problems with the implicit goal of gaining clarity and driving execution/direction.

The Director will do this by building, coaching, managing, and inspiring a team of largely senior software engineers. They will guide the team through effective planning, data driven decision making, and crucial problem solving when necessary.

Outcomes from the Director of Engineering

  1. Growing an excited and motivated department.
    • 30 days: 1:1s kicked off with all direct reports of the current team, job reqs reviewed and updated, future hiring plans are mapped.
    • 90 days: Hiring pipeline for multiple critical jobs is pacing, particularly L4+ roles. Team is motivated and each team member understands their role and how to get to the next level.
    • 365 days: Department has scaled to 30+ engineers and now you are coaching the coaches. Skip level feedback is consistently positive; Multiple engineer managers are hiring and managing their own teams.
  2. Engineering capacity meeting growing demands.
    • 30 days: Developed and monitored the critical performance KPIs of the department. Took over leadership of SDLC for the department;
    • 90 days: Developed and socialized an onboarding experience for the department that ensures engineers can commit meaningful code in their first 2 weeks, and are fully autonomous after 12 weeks.
    • 365 days: Demonstrated a 4x improvement in engineering velocity for the entire department compared to 365 days prior. 70% of project goals for the quarter are consistently being completed.
  3. Department roadmap supports high business-value projects, future proofed as necessary.
    • 30 days: Took over ownership of at least one critical roadmap project; Productively critiqued concept docs, PRDs, and Tech Plans;
    • 90 days: Quarterly OKRs reviewed and future quarter OKRs proposed; Became main engineering point of contact for partners on several critical projects; Has led at least one critical roadmap project to successful completion.
    • 365 days: Drafted 18 month forward-looking technical roadmap with proposed technical improvements and resource costs; Championed at least 2 high leverage technical improvements to optimize team efficiency.
  4. Department is comfortably exceeding business SLAs for quality and execution.
    • 30 days: Implement 2 new measures of technical quality for the department; Established SLOs for maintainability, reliability, and availability of the core systems.
    • 90 days: Successfully adopted 3 new best practices in the department to improve technical quality; Has fully tracked all defects deployed by the department with clear root cause analysis for each defect.
    • 365 days: Ramped up a technical quality function within the department to create systems and tools for quality. Reduced mean time to repair and detect issues by the department by 40% compared to six months prior.
  5. Influencing cross functional projects and teams through clear communication.
    • 30 days: Met all department leads and understood their goals;
    • 90 days: Established bi-directional communication channels with all other departments with clear support SLAs;
    • 365 days: Multiple cross-functional scoping meetings coordinated and executed. Contributed meaningfully in cross-departmental strategy sessions.

Traits

  1. Motivational and likable - This person will need to lead an entire department, influencing managers to follow their lead. Their influence needs to be felt directly and indirectly by their department, if respect is lost they’re not going to succeed.
  2. Amazing communicator – Can read between the lines in what people say and write, and can simplify, express, and motivate around complicated subjects through the use of appropriate synthesis/brevity, precise semantics, structured and logical reasoning, and narrative.
  3. Quantitative - Needs to feel comfortable working with statistics and potentially machine learning models. Also needs to be able to backup up decisions with high quality analysis.
  4. Fast-paced - Our environment is constantly changing, this person will need to be able to make decisions on the fly that don’t hinder the growth of the team.
  5. Technically knowledgeable - This job requires enough understanding of the system to represent the team’s capabilities to the rest of the organization. The team needs to feel comfortable with this person speaking on their behalf in the technical domain.

What Trellis can offer you

Trellis has been a remote-only company since inception and will always be remote-first. We know how to cultivate a successful and highly collaborative team despite the distance. This includes:

  • Quarterly virtual events to connect with your team members while celebrating our success and accomplishments
  • Budget for home office equipment.
  • Clear norms and etiquette around virtual meetings.
  • Semi-annual in person retreats with both work and non-work activities (once travel is safe again)

In addition to being one of the best remote companies to work for, Trellis also offers:

  • A very generous time off policy with unlimited sick and personal days.
  • 100% company-paid Platinum health plans for employees. Generous subsidy for dependents.
  • 401(k) retirement savings plan.
  • A fulfilling, high impact role on a team working to completely change the way people shop for insurance.

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