Vistar Media | Sr. Software Engineer -

Sr. Software Engineer

Vistar Media |  Philadelphia | Dev / Eng

Job Description
Perks + Benefits
Company Culture Coverage
Our team at Vistar Media is made up of engineers from a variety of backgrounds and expertise. This makes it the perfect place to learn from seasoned engineers to help expand your knowledge of a new programming language or technology and to make a big impact on our products and services. Our engineers work closely with our Product team week-to-week to develop new lines of business and add to our existing feature set. At Vistar, we value code quality and have a rigorous code review process. The responsibility is shared across the team, with each member participating.

We are looking for a passionate Senior Software Engineer to design and develop software solutions. We also encourage mentorship through pair programming to help bring our team to the next level. Senior Software Engineers are expected to participate in these activities and set the standard for the team.

Our ideal candidates are familiar with current trends in web technology, and have extensive experience in at least one of the languages used in our code base. You should be able to work independently with little supervision, along with excellent organization and problem-solving skills.

Ultimately, the role of the Senior Software Engineer is to build (and enable their teammates to build) high-quality, performant and well-tested software that complies with coding standards and quality expectations of the leadership team and our clients.

  • Take a technical leadership role on features and small teams
  • Large group communications and presentations
  • Work with the architecture team to develop maintainable, effective, and efficient solutions
  • Help to onboard and mentor other engineers on the team
  • Maintain a high level of productivity while making significant contributions to the Vistar platform code base
  • Participate in a large number of code reviews
  • Work directly with the Product team on project planning and discovery
  • Have a deep understanding of the business case behind your team’s work: who benefits from its implementation and why?
  • Write well-designed, well-tested code
  • Troubleshoot, debug, and upgrade existing systems
  • Excellent knowledge of relational databases and experience with their design and implementation
  • Experience with test-driven development
  • Experience in at least two of the following is preferred, but not required: Go, Scala, Java, Python, JavaScript or TypeScript
  • Experience with a formal code review process is a plus
  • At least 5 years of relevant work experience in software development
  • Experience in technical/team leadership preferred
Some of our perks
  • Catered lunch twice a week from local restaurants
  • A kitchen fully stocked with snacks and drinks
  • Flexible vacation time
  • Summer Fridays
  • A large entertainment budget for frequent happy hours and team outings
  • Sponsored volunteer events
  • Opportunities for team and project leadership
  • A great bunch of people to work with and learn from
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Health & Wellness Benefits
  • Dental
  • Disability Insurance
  • Health Insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • Vision
  • Remote Work
  • Work from Home
Parental Benefits
  • Family Medical Leave
  • Flexible Work Schedule
  • Generous Parental Leave
Perks & Discounts
  • Casual Dress
  • Company Outings
  • Lunch
  • Snacks
  • Special Discounts
Retirement & Stock Options Benefits
  • 401K
Vacation & Time Off Benefits
  • Generous PTO
  • Paid Holidays
  • Paid Sick Days

How would you describe Vistar Media’s office culture?

Everybody's so talented and passionate about their work, and it's really motivating to be surrounded by that kind of energy. It's obviously pretty quiet, given that it's all engineers, but it's definitely a productive environment. Everyone's very friendly and always willing to lend a hand or point you in the right direction if you have questions. We have catered lunches from popular local spots like HipCityVeg and Han Dynasty twice a week, and regular happy hours and outings. Everyone's extremely friendly, but at the same time it's very focused.

How do Vistar Media employees get involved in the community?

We sponsor conferences every year, like LibertyJS and the Women in Tech Summit. This year we're also sponsoring Philly ETE. We get involved with local meetups as well. Normally it's just paying for beer or pizza and having a couple of team members go, but this year we're trying to host more events. We're hosting an event with Code for Philly in April that we're really excited about. A lot of the staff on their own time go to different tech events in the city — even the ones that we're not sponsoring.

Are there any special Vistar Media traditions?

We recently started doing an annual company off-site event. The past two years it was in New York, but it's probably going to be in Philly next year. That's when we fly in everybody from around the world who is a Vistar employee and we all get together for about two days to hear all the company updates, plans and the vision for the year. Then, after a day of presentations, we have a company outing. This year we went to a place called Spin in New York, which is a ping-pong bar. Each summer each of the offices will have a summer party, so, for example, the New York office does a beach day.

Are there any fun events for new hires when they come on board?

On their first day or within their first two weeks our new hires will go up to the New York office for a full day of onboarding and meeting the directors of all the different teams. They learn what they do, and then there's a happy hour event. In their individual offices, they'll do a group outing with their respective team.

How do the remote teams work together?

We have regular meetings two to three times a week over Google Hangouts, and then we're always IMing each other over GChat. Luckily, we don't really have any problems with it. If anything ever has to be moved, it's easy enough. We've gotten the hang of it at this point. We also encourage engineers to go up to the New York office occasionally to interact with members of other teams.

What would you say are the major qualities you look for in applicants?

Somebody who craves learning. Someone who has a true passion for engineering. Most of the time, the people on our team have their own personal projects that they're working on outside of work. They just show that true passion for coding. Definitely being humble. Not afraid to ask questions, not afraid to admit if they don't know something rather than just trying to “fake it 'til you make it.” Technically, we look for well-rounded full-stack engineers who might not necessarily have experience with every single tool that we use, but who could come in and pick up our codebase pretty quickly.

Do you look for candidates who specialize in a certain language?

Not really. In fact, the freedom of language choice and coding ability is a compelling plus to working at Vistar. Most of the time, the bare minimum that people need to be well-versed in would be Java, JavaScript and Python. Right now, we are kind of keeping our eyes peeled for somebody who has extensive experience with React.

How do coworkers work together throughout the day?

There’s a lot of collaboration. If people have questions they will just get up and go to somebody's desk, so you'll see people huddled around a computer or in a conference room trying to solve a problem throughout the day.

What is the workflow like?

Mondays are spent in planning for the most part. We work in weekly sprints, so throughout the week we have standup every day around noon. Then people are just picking up tickets and working based on priority. On Friday around 4 o’clock, everyone will gather around and do presentations about what they worked on during the week. Vistar Media’s “Code Review” is an important part of the daily tech workflow. Every line of code is reviewed by at least two people before being cut, an impressive feat considering that Vistar Media has a one-week development cycle. That means almost every week, employees are working on a new set of code or new product.

How does Vistar Media view hiring recent graduates?

In the past couple years we've had a lot of luck hiring pretty junior engineers who have either come right out of school or have only been out of school for a year or two. For them, coming in and working with our more senior developers has been really helpful. We've seen these younger people come in and really quickly rise to be some of our top performers.

How does Vistar exemplify long-term growth and success in the ad tech industry?

Our founders and top leadership know this industry inside and out. They are at the point where they can anticipate problems and solve them before they even come up. They are super open with the rest of us, both with our successes and if we are having any kind of setbacks or certain departments are struggling to meet a goal. We have monthly company updates with a Q&A portion, and people can anonymously submit questions. Our CEO is usually the one answering them live, and there's really nothing that's off limits. They're very open and they're not shy to talk about any concerns.

What’s at the core of Vistar Media’s business model?

From analytics to product, and across all support teams, we put technology first. Vistar’s end-to-end programmatic ecosystem provides unrivaled scale, built for the complexities of OOH media. Using advanced movement data analysis, we provide targeting, seamless activation and measurement of audience-based buying across out-of-home and mobile media.

In the past seven years, Vistar engineers have developed software solutions in a multitude of coding languages (our team is 'agnostic to tools' and will learn any language necessary for the task at hand), addressing the needs of both the buy side and sell side of digital out-of-home media. From refining our geotemporal data analysis to improving our programmatic ad exchange, Vistar’s engineers are constantly tackling new challenges.

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