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Software Engineer - Backend (Python)

Published on Sat, 19 Nov 2022 09:54 UTC
(307 days ago)


Is this you?

We are looking for a Software Engineer who is keen on designing, building, deploying, and operating the Memrise backend systems that help people around the world learn new languages, enriching their minds so they can enrich their world.

This is a great time to join our team. We are rolling out a completely new learning experience and doing some fascinating work in using the world’s video content to immerse people in the languages they are learning. We are seeking someone who listens to others, offers their own wisdom, and then rolls up their sleeves to do the work, bringing others along with them.

Can you tell me more about Memrise’s tech?

Our backend is primarily Python with some Django, hosted in the cloud using Kubernetes. All our infrastructure is configured with Terraform, and we have a continuous deployment pipeline for most systems including the backend and website. Currently, we’re using MySQL but are looking at re-architecting our database as part of company ambitions to significantly scale our product and content.

What will I be accountable for?

  • Working with in-house and external engineering teams to design and implement new features in the Memrise platform
  • Identifying ways to improve the Memrise user experience by improving our backend code and then bringing it to fruition
  • Accelerating engineering, product development, and the business at Memrise by improving the tools we use day-to-day and building new ones

Here’s a preview into what you’d be working on—within 90 days, you will have:

  • Developed and deployed a significant new area of functionality in the Memrise backend application that integrates the existing product with a new, separate strategic workstream
  • A working understanding of the Memrise backend, data pipeline, and their supporting infrastructure


What are the key technical requirements for this role?

  • 2+ years of commercial experience developing scalable, mission critical transactional systems using Python
  • Experience working with relational databases, such as MySQL or PostgreSQL
  • Working knowledge of modern testing practices
  • Comfortable using Git and GitHub for day-to-day work
  • Experience running and debugging production systems
  • Ability to get things done quickly and correctly even in unfamiliar areas
  • Excellent written communication skills, as evidenced in design documents, bug reports, code reviews and the like


(though we can provide on-the-job training for all of these!)

  • Excellent understanding of modern DevOps / SRE practices
  • Experience on an on-call rota for a critical production system
  • Experience with declarative configuration management systems such as Terraform
  • Experience configuring and managing AWS services
  • Experience developing services deployed as containers, ideally running on Kubernetes


Who are we?

Memrise is a popular and established global language learning tool, with a unique brain-science-backed pedagogy.

We want to make people’s lives better by helping people learn to hold a conversation with, and genuinely understand native speakers in a multitude of languages.

We believe that better communication between people across the world from different backgrounds will contribute towards making it a better place.

With over 60m user accounts, an App Store rating of 4.7/5 and Google Play rating of 4.6/5 from 1.5million reviews, and millions of daily active users, we’re an ambitious digital company in the exciting and ever-growing EdTech industry.

A key part of our product appeal lies in the humour of our content, and in authentically understanding diversity and nuances across cultures and what appeals to different people. So if you’re looking for a role that’s less big-corporate and where being yourself is regarded as an asset: we strongly suggest you consider applying!

What’s the working environment like?

After two years of being away from the office, we’re gently transitioning to a hybrid working environment. That said, we are willing to support fully remote positions within the UK as appropriate.

Since COVID hit, we’ve prioritised the welfare of our staff and so - to date - office attendance has been voluntary (although incentivised with free food, learning events and parties!). It’s worth noting our office location is on the doorstep of Spitalfields market in London with its delicious and varied lunchtime food offerings! Historically, we’ve been a very sociable company with plenty of parties, and where colleagues become great friends.

The future of what work looks like continues to remain an active conversation, but across the company we’ve committed that teams will not be expected into the office more than two days a week. In practice, this is likely to be less, as we adapt pragmatically in a changeable world.

You’ll join our London team of open-minded, big-hearted, goal-oriented ‘Memrisians’, made up of linguists, developers, designers, marketers and more, all working together to do great things. Get in touch if you want to join the team.

Find out more here:

What are some of the benefits?

  • Share options, so you can retire on an island
  • Generous Learning and Development budget for training, conferences, books and L&D leave
  • Enhanced Parental Leave
  • Flexible working options
  • Private health insurance with Vitality, and related perks (50% off a Virgin and Nuffield Health Gym memberships)
  • Dental insurance with Unum
  • Language classes with in-office and virtual tutors
  • Cycle-to-work scheme
  • Remote talks, socials, and parties

We’re an equal opportunity employer. If it’s okay, we’re not going to list examples of people and groups we don’t discriminate against. We don’t discriminate, full stop. We celebrate.

What about salary?

£60,000 - £67,500 (dependent on experience)

Apply now

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