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Senior Machine Learning Engineer

Machine Learning | San Francisco, CA | Full Time

Job Description

About Us

Figure Eight is the essential human-in-the-loop AI platform. With 10 years’ experience, we make the world’s most widely used software for Artificial Intelligence. We have created 100s of millions of training data items from billions of human judgments, working closely with our customers to develop Machine Learning and Data Annotation strategies.

We have San Francisco’s top leadership team in Machine Learning. Our VP of Product ran 1/3 of IBM Watson’s products before she joined us. Our VP of Machine Learning was Chief Scientist at Atlassian (JIRA, Confluence, etc) before she joined us. Our CTO is a former disaster response leader and Stanford PhD. Across the company, we celebrate our diversity and enjoy collaborating within the company and across our customers.

At Figure Eight (formerly CrowdFlower) you will work on a wide range of applications. If you speak to your phone, personalize your music, shop online, or if your car parks itself, then you have likely used machine learning powered by Figure Eight. We also run the world’s largest marketplace for human annotation, with more than 100,000 people regularly working on our platform to provide human training & evaluation for machine learning.

Our Machine Learning team works directly with our customers, which include data scientists at leading AI companies including Amazon, Google, IBM, and many self-driving car companies. We are regularly cited at the major academic and industry venues for AI, often presenting ourselves or with our customers.

About the Role:

This role is for someone who loves creating solutions to real-life business problems using AI, and would be especially interesting for a person who would like to broaden their experience of where AI is applied. For example, one day, you may be adding a product feature to help a large Social Media company build more reliable Machine Learning models from their data, and the next day you might be building new Machine Learning-driven capabilities for our annotation platform.

You will be focusing on improving our current platform by adding Machine Learning enhancements and on designing/building the next generation of Machine Learning platform for our customers. This is a fairly unique opportunity to work in close collaboration with both the team's Machine Learning scientists and our Engineering department.

You will play a critical part in improving the overall throughput and efficiency of Machine Learning team by automating some parts of the Machine Learning deployment process. And because you will be responsible for operationalizing models, you will also be in charge of making those innovative solutions accessible to our customers. As an applied Machine Learning expert, you will also be expected to be comfortable fine-tuning, testing and diagnosing those systems. Finally, you will also have the opportunity to publish papers and articles on applied Machine Learning and Human-Computer Interaction, and to present the results at academic and industry conferences.

This is an important role within our new Machine Learning-focused team that values curiosity, diversity and positive social impact, collaborating with ML experts including our VP of Machine Learning, Dr. Jennifer Prendki, and our CTO, Dr. Robert Munro. This could be a rare opportunity for an experienced data engineer with a strong interest for Machine Learning to get exposure to the fields of Machine Learning and Human-Computer Interaction and take their career to the next level. You will be working closely with experts in Computer Vision, Human-Computer Interaction and Data Engineering, with the opportunity to expand your knowledge in these areas, and to gain experience working within a successful and growing startup.

For more about what we build, please visit


  • Take full ownership of the models developed by our Machine Learning scientists and take them from the stage of proof-of-concept to the finish line
  • Act as the team's expert in improving the performance and scalability of the models created by the ML scientists
  • Champion best practices when it comes to building functional data products that delight our customers and facilitate our contributors' jobs
  • Keep the team on top of new technologies in the area of Machine Learning, Deep Learning and Data Engineering
  • Work closely with the Product team and the Engineering team on creating real value for our customers
  • Publish papers, articles and blog posts that feature the Figure Eight platform

Positive Background Experience:

  • A recent PhD in Computer Science or another relevant topic and 2+ years' experience, or a Masters and 4+ years’ experience
  • Exceptional Data Engineering skills, especially experience building automated data pipelines
  • Solid coding skills (especially in Java) and good knowledge of Python or other relevant scripting languages
  • Expertise with Docker and Kubernetes
  • Experience with workflow management; ideally, you would have had exposure to either Jenkins or Airflow
  • Familiarity with the most recent Machine Learning frameworks like TensorFlow, Caffee, Scikit-Learn, pyTorch, etc.
  • Some exposure to Machine Learning, Deep Learning and related technologies

Bonus points if you have:

  • A deep background in Machine Learning or Deep Learning
  • Experience with cloud-based software providers like AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, IBM and Salesforce
  • Specific experience with cloud-based or open source Machine Learning systems, like Amazon AI, Azure Machine Learning, Google Cloud ML, IBM Watson, etc.
  • Experience operationalizing Machine Learning applications
  • A growth-oriented mindset (you are never tired of learning new technologies)
  • The ability to communicate efficiently with technical and non-technical partners, both in writing and in oral form

How to Apply:

  • Click Apply Now. Please add a short (a half page is fine) cover letter that shares what excites you about solving real-world problems for Machine Learning and Data Science teams, or anything else that excites about this potential role.


  • Competitive salary based on skills and experience
  • Medical, dental, vision, 401k
  • Flexible vacation
  • Full kitchen and catered lunches
  • Team events
  • Amazing office location in San Francisco!