Senior Digital Library Software Engineer

Cambridge, MA
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Created: August 7, 2013


Harvard University IT Library Technology Services is seeking a skilled software developer with experience in academic libraries to play a leading role in transitioning innovative prototypes of web-based library applications into a sustainable, robust production environment. Will collaborate with Harvard developers and teams around the university to transfer ownership of source code and working prototypes into the Library Technology Services infrastructure, work with product owners to define requirements for broader use (including creating open source projects), design and develop needed software enhancements and bug fixes, and collaborate with the LTS operations staff to deploy the software in a production environment. Will help define technical standards for ingest of new projects and must keep current on new tools and technologies. Will provide tier three tech support for applications that are in production. May also work on developing new library applications and APIs that interface with and support library data management and discovery applications. Developed software must be of high quality and reliability, releasable as open source, potentially supporting public access for critical library digital content that may be accessed by thousands of users on a daily basis.

Duties & Responsibilities

The key responsibilities include the following:

Analysis. Work with library and technical teams to define and document requirements and enhancement for software applications, and their transition to centrally supported infrastructure. Estimate work.

Design and development. Utilize Agile development methodologies to define and document roadmaps, themes, user stories, and create architecture designs, and task breakdowns for new software or subsystems and for modification to existing programs. Utilize open source components wherever possible. Write high quality, documented, unit-tested code.

Deployment and maintenance. Release code to production systems through established change control processes and help evolve these processes. Assist in debugging operational and performance problems, and fix bugs. Monitor and take action as necessary to ensure the continued successful operation of software systems.

Testing and documentation. Thoroughly unit test, integration test, and performance test software, and review the software of other developers for code quality. Create excellent on-line architecture and design documentation, following standards for code documentation.

Act as technical lead on single person projects, or collaborate on team projects. Prepare necessary technical and user documentation. Participate in functional and technical design committees and document results as needed. May coordinate small projects involving other staff.

Act as technical project manager for small/medium projects, interfacing directly with Harvard technical and non-technical staff.

Basic Qualifications

To be considered for this role, candidates must have the following experience and skills:

Bachelor’s degree in computer science or Master’s degree in library science, or equivalent experience; 4+ years relevant professional experience in software development; experience and understanding of the systems and services of academic libraries; experience planning and executing complex web-based software development projects, including dynamic user interfaces using JavaScript and AJAX; experience in the full software development lifecycle.

Excellent oral and written communication skills; demonstrated ability to work well with mid-level management, project, and technical and non-technical staff to discuss functional requirements, write specifications and develop work plans and schedules; successful experience working independently and as part of a team; strong customer service orientation and skills.

Thorough understanding of web-based technologies and software tools relevant to digital libraries, including relational databases, Solr indexing, 3 tier application architectures, and information retrieval systems for searching and browsing; expert in at least one of the following development environments: Ruby on Rails (preferred), PHP, or Python using a modern framework such as Symfony, Django, or Rails; experience in Java web and RESTful web service development, including JUnit; expertise in XML, HTML5, CSS, SQL (with MYSQL or Oracle), JavaScript, jQuery
Experience in Linux development and operating environments
Demonstrated ability to master new technologies and programming languages; experience with source code control (GIT, CVS, or SVN)

Other Skills:
Ability to think analytically
Demonstrated ability to take the initiative and complete projects
Flexible, able to prioritize multiple projects, with strong focus on getting things done

Additional Qualifications

In addition to the required skills, the ideal candidate will have these highly desirable skills:
Masters degree in computer science
Experience with library metadata schemas (such as MARC, MODS, DC, VRA, EAD, RDF),
Knowledge of linked open data
Experience with processing multi-media file formats, including digital images, audio, and video
Experience with search technology, such as Solr/Lucene
Functional and technical understanding of digital repository systems and context delivery services
Experience in configuring productive development tools, such as automated build systems, automated unit test frameworks
Experience in Agile development practices and TDD
Experience with noSQL DBs, such as couchDB or mongoDB

Additional Information

This is a term limited position scheduled to end one yeare from the start date, with the possibility of renewal contingent on funding, business needs and satisfactory job performance.

Harvard University Information Technology is unable to provide work authorization and/or visa sponsorship.

Please note: Harvard University requires pre-employment reference and background screening.

This position has a 180-day probationary period.

Harvard offers an outstanding benefits package including:
Time Off: 3 - 4 weeks paid vacation, paid holiday break, 12 paid sick days, 11.5 paid holidays, and 3 paid personal days per year.
Medical/Dental/Vision: We offer a variety of excellent medical plans, dental & vision plans, all coverage begins as of your start date.
Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with full vesting after 3 years of service.
Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive tuition assistance program, $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and discounted options through participating Harvard grad schools.

Transportation: Harvard offers a 50% discounted MBTA pass as well as additional options to assist employees in their daily commute.

Wellness options: Harvard offers programs and classes at little or no cost, including stress management, massages, nutrition, meditation and complimentary health services.

Harvard access to athletic facilities, libraries, campus events and many discounts throughout metro Boston.

Join Harvard University Information Technology (HUIT) to assure Harvard’s leadership in IT!

Last updated: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 23:44 UTC