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Front-End Engineer

Software Engineering | Alameda, CA | Full Time

Job Description

About Saildrone

Saildrone designs and manufactures wind and solar-powered autonomous surface vehicles called saildrones, which make cost-effective ocean data collection possible at scale. We are busy building the world's largest high-resolution ocean datasets, working with governments and private companies around the globe. We believe that better inputs in planetary models in turn yield better outputs and that the new insights gained in weather forecasting, carbon cycling, global fishing and climate change will have a tremendous impact on humanity. We are based in Alameda, CA and are backed by Horizons Ventures, Social Capital, The Capricorn Investment Group, Lux Capital and The Schmidt Family Foundation.

About The Role

The Saildrone fleet of ocean-going drones tirelessly roams the world's oceans collecting data that drive new planetary insights. These are delivered to our customers via beautiful mobile and web apps. We are looking for an outstanding and passionate Front-End Software Engineer to transform complex customer requirements into first-class beautiful web experiences.

You will, among other things, be responsible for evolving our web-based 'Mission Control' for operating a large fleet of drones, a Data Visualization portal to deliver our large datasets as beautiful graphical insights to our customers and explore a variety of consumer applications as well. You will be responsible for leading entire projects and owning their outcomes from start to finish. This challenge is not for the faint of heart and will require a significant sense of initiative and self-direction, from application design to code implementation, and a passion for building products that impact humanity.

You will be a part of a team of talented individuals who are just as passionate about supporting one another as they are about our planetary mission. Honesty and willingness to accept feedback are critical, as is a sense of humor and generally having fun!


  • Make the experience of using Saildrone web apps professional, delightful and effective
  • Continually improve the visual and interaction patterns that underly our web apps
  • Communicate your ideas through wireframes, mockups, and interactive prototypes
  • Write clean, robust HTML / CSS / Javascript, that powers the final version of your interactions
  • Lead the development of web applications by designing system and software architecture, writing specs, and building code
  • Take ownership of projects end to end, managing broad scope and ambiguity
  • Mentor other engineers, lead by example and collaborate with team members
  • Build front-end applications that drive client-reporting experience & admin-consoles, data-visualization & configuration-management
  • Collaborate with UX designers to create a fast & intuitive HTML5 experience & execute pixel perfect designs
  • Collaborate with backend engineers to ensure a fast, accurate & relevant client-experience
  • Own release and quality assurance of front-end components, automate testing infrastructure & analytics


  • Passion for learning and sharing knowledge with the team around you
  • 5+ years of experience in developing HTML5 applications with frameworks such as React, Angular & jQuery and tools such as Grunt & Selenium
  • Experience with visualization libraries such as d3.js or Dygraphs and mapping frameworks
  • Strong and mature visual design sense, particularly as it pertains to typography and UI patterns
  • Experience in prototyping interactions using jQuery (or equivalent framework)
  • server-side language like Python, Ruby, Java, Scala, MySQL or similar technologies is a plus, but not required
  • Experience building responsive mobile/web applications with HTML5
  • Passion for creating mobile products; personal projects or other work (send us links to your GitHub repos)
  • UX, UI and design skills a plus
  • A passion for Saildrone's mission


  • Medical, dental and vision plans for you and your dependents
  • Healthy lunch program provided onsite
  • Active sailing classes: become a certified skipper on boats up to 35ft!
  • Fun team activities including our famous monthly social taxiway BBQ
  • Waterfront office, a former airplane hangar that was once used to film 'The Matrix'
  • Short and relaxing ferry ride from the Ferry Building for SF residents
  • Enhanced paternity/maternity programs
  • Competitive benefits including discounted gym, life insurance, 401k plan

This is an exciting new opportunity to drive your function at a fast-growing post series-B startup at the cutting edge intersection of big data services and autonomous hardware. You will be an integral part of an A+ multi-disciplinary team scaling a high-performance business while delivering high impact for humanity and future generations.

Our waterfront office offers beautiful views over San Francisco Bay in always sunny Alameda. Your commute could be a short and relaxing ferry ride from the Ferry Building. Even our walls have good karma, our offices mixing software development with a hardware production line in the former airplane hangar that was once used to film 'The Matrix'.

You can read what the press says about us:

Bloomberg - This armada of drones could conquer the oceans
Inc - The most exciting drones aren't in the air, they are in the oceans
The New York Times - No sailors needed: robot sailboats scour the oceans for data
NOAA -  Adaptable and driven by renewable energy, saildrones voyage into remote waters
The Economist - Sailing the wired seas

Or watch the Saildrone mission being presented the TED stage

Saildrone is an equal opportunity workplace dedicated to pursuing and hiring a diverse workforce.

Any unsolicited resumes/candidate profiles submitted through our website or to personal email accounts of employees of Saildrone are considered the property of Saildrone and are not subject to payment of agency fees.