£47k-£57k pa with excellent benefits
Permanent - This is a full-time role but we offer a range of flexible working arrangements and encourage our people to take advantage of them. Blackfriars, London - we offer flexibility to work remotely

Closing date: 19th July 2021 at 8am

We are recruiting for a Full-Stack Developer!

About Nesta
We are Nesta, the UK’s innovation agency for social good. We design, test and scale solutions to society’s biggest problems. Our three missions are to give every child a fair start, help people live healthy lives, and create a sustainable future where the economy works for both people and the planet.

For over 20 years, we have worked to support, encourage and inspire innovation. We work in three roles: as an innovation partner working with frontline organisations to design and test new solutions, as a venture builder supporting new and early stage businesses, and as a system shaper creating the conditions for innovation.

Harnessing the rigour of science and the creativity of design, we work relentlessly to change millions of lives for the better. Find out more at nesta.org.uk

How will a Full Stack Developer contribute to Nesta’s success?
We are looking to recruit a Full-stack Developer to join the Data Analytics Practice, which is at the forefront of using Big Data for social good. We bring together world class capabilities in User Research, Data Engineering, Data Science and Data Visualisation to produce open source code, research and tools that help individuals, charities, businesses and governments to make more informed choices for the benefit of society.

As a Full-stack Developer, you will work alongside a growing team of front-end developers and data visualization specialists as well as the wider team of data engineers and data scientists in the Data Analytics Practice.

The Full-stack Developer will provide a significant infrastructural boost to Nesta’s products (mainly web apps facing the general public, but also internal tools to help our research programme, which delivers data-driven insights to support a platform of evidence-based policymaking. With Nesta’s ambitious new objectives there will be plenty of opportunities for developing tools and libraries, and building on our current stack of data infrastructure. The Full-stack Developer will work closely with the Data Visualisation and Products Development team to ensure that we have a back-end layer between our apps front-end and all the data services we use, and so that our methods will scale effectively to meet the demands of Nesta’s missions. You will also work to meet the demands of some of Nesta’s other standalone projects.

The Role
Nesta is looking to recruit a Full-stack Developer to work on our products in two broad senses:

  • Developing a layer of back-end services to let our front-end apps query and fetch data efficiently from various services (AWS S3, Elasticsearch, SQL databases and others) for example using GraphQL or similar tools to help reduce complexity when it comes to querying multiple datasets at once. In order to be able to visualise real time data it would be desirable to have a Websocket architecture in place.
  • Once back-end services are in place, help out front-end developers building UIs, especially for what concerns querying the developed back-end services. We strive to write apps that are accessible, responsive, well supported on many browsers and ultimately easy-to-use, so the right candidate would need to have a good understanding of these concepts.

The successful candidate will work in the Data Visualisation and Products Development team and with members of the Data Engineering team. The role should appeal to a full-stack developer who wants to apply their approach to problem solving, whilst broadening their exposure to diverse data engineering technologies, data science methodologies and ultimately to diverse data visualisation techniques. This kind of work will suit somebody with a pragmatic attitude but for whom the “elegant solution” is important when possible: e.g. knowing (or willing to learn) Svelte and functional programming is part of the requirements.

The Full-stack Developer will report to the Products and Data Visualisation Senior Lead, and would agree to a development plan with objectives and how this fits into their longer term career goals. This would include access to a generous training budget as well as opportunities for mentorship and project-based learning.

Staff enjoy very flexible working hours, plus the ability to regularly work from home.


· General development

o Essential

  • Git + GitHub (or equivalent) for version control, whilst working in a collaborative development or production environment;
  • Knowledge of the Javascript language;
  • Knowledge of the UNIX environment (Bash, or Zsh);
  • Test Driven Development;

o Desirable / willing to learn

  • Functional programming concepts;

Back-end development

o Essential

  • Database technologies; in particular you need to know Elasticsearch and Postgres;
  • Some proficiency with GraphQL would be great, or willing to learn it, or to propose solid alternatives;
  • Cloud development and/or management:
  • You need to know your way around AWS (EC2, ECS, batch, S3, Lambdas);
  • It would be great if you were able to test, propose and motivate solid alternatives (Digital Ocean, Google Cloud, etc) and explain motivations;
  • REST API development in Node/Express or other Node technology;

o Desirable / willing to learn

  • Graph DBs (we use Neo4J) and/or realtime databases (Redis, et al);
  • Knowledge of web sockets;
  • Some Python experience
  • Some interest in ontologies and semantic web technologies;

Front-end development:

o Essential

  • Good knowledge of HTML, CSS, Canvas, SVG;
  • Good experience with Svelte & Sapper/SvelteKit (or willing to learn it if you come from another framework);
  • Some knowledge of data visualisation concepts, and some experience integrating interactive charts in a web application;
  • Some experience in making apps responsive, accessible, and with a good browser compatibility;

o Desirable / willing to learn

  • Some knowledge of statecharts concepts, possibly of Xstate;
  • Some knowledge of the Netlify platform (or willing to learn it), or to propose equivalent services;
  • Some basic knowledge of WebGL (or willing to learn it).

What we offer Salary: £46k-£57k plus array of benefits, including health cash plans, dental insurance, the ability to buy and sell annual leave, eyecare vouchers and more

Location: This role is based in Blackfriars, Central London, but we offer flexibility for our people to work remotely

Term: Permanent

Hours: This is a full-time role but we offer a range of flexible working arrangements and encourage our people to take advantage of them. Many do.

Making an application To apply for this role, please submit your application before 8am on the 26th of July 2021.

At Nesta, we believe that a diverse workforce leads to an organisation that is more innovative, more creative and gets better results.

We want our workforce to represent the diversity of the people and communities we serve. We also want our workplace to be one where different experiences, expertise and perspectives are valued, and where everyone is encouraged to grow and develop.

This means that when we are recruiting, we actively seek to reach a diverse pool of candidates. It also means that we are happy to consider any reasonable adjustments that potential employees may need to in order to be successful.

We recognise the importance of a good balance between work and home life, so we do everything we can to accommodate flexible working, including working from home, compressed or part-time hours, job shares and other arrangements.

Please just let us know in your application or at any stage throughout the process (and beyond) if these are options you’d like to explore.

Salary range £47,000 — 57,000

+ excellent benefits