Biodiversity Informatics Senior Software Engineer - 21648BR

Biodiversity Informatics Senior Software Engineer

Biodiversity Institute
University of Kansas Lawrence Campus
Work Location Assignment: 
Employee Class: 
U-Unclassified Professional Staff

Position Overview

We are looking for a software engineer to contribute to describing and documenting the life of the planet. The ideal candidate is eager to learn; actively shares ideas, knowledge, and strategies to build a stronger team and project; and possesses up-to-date knowledge of technological developments. We offer opportunities for professional growth and a generous university employee benefits program.

We support scientists in natural history museums around the world with software that manages and publishes information about the species and specimens curated in research collections of plants and animals. The biological specimens document new species and the distribution of life on Earth. Our open-source Specify software platform is used by 300+ collections around the globe as part of a global research cyberinfrastructure collaboration HQ’d at the University of Kansas.

Do something for the planet and enjoy a pleasant and welcoming work environment. You will join a small, competent, and friendly team in a sustainable museum technology initiative operating for over 30 years and experiencing rapid worldwide growth.

The position is funded with revenue from the Specify Collections Consortium, (, a global, non-profit, museum collaboration, organized under the KU administrative umbrella. We offer a flexible, remote or hybrid, 40-hour schedule with offices on the bucolic KU campus, in lovely Lawrence, Kansas.

Major Technologies We Use
  • Front-end: Typescript and React, Figma, Tailwind
  • Back-end: Python, Django, MySQL, OpenAPI
  • Dev-ops: Docker, GitHub Actions, Linux

Job Description

50% - Code web applications using software engineering best practices and documentation. Extend back-end functionality using automated testing. Design, guide, and evaluate systems within the scope of the broader project, and write code to solve ambiguous problems. Diagnose issues and debug/track/resolve by analyzing their sources and impact.

20% - Work collaboratively as part of a team of software developers to specify, and design API interface definitions, web service wrappers, and web applications. Conduct technology research, define technical requirements, and design individual software components within a larger application.

20% - Review and influence ongoing design, architecture, security, standards, and methods. Assess, and propose alternative implementation strategies and component classifications for software modules.

5% - Participate in requirement gathering with project stakeholders, including team members, advisory committees, and biological collections researchers, and identify and prioritize innovations.

5% - Mentor junior software developers in all aspects of their engineering duties.

Position Requirements

Position is a combination of on-site and remote work but fully remote work will be considered if preferred by the selected candidate.

Required Qualifications

  1. 5 years of professional experience (or equivalent education and experience*) including one or more of: front-end, back-end, or UI development for end-user application.
  2. Competency and skill in best-practices of software design and implementation.
  3. Proficiency in at least one, and capable of developing competency in the other, of front-end and back-end coding languages: JavaScript, TypeScript, Python, and Java.
  4. Professional experience with relational database systems, including proficiency with SQL and principles of relational database design.
  5. Developer’s level understanding of DevOps methodology.
  6. Experience working both independently and collaboratively in a team-based environment as demonstrated by experience, application materials, interview and references.
  7. Strong written and verbal communication skills as demonstrated through application materials, interview and references.
* Equivalencies: High school/GED and 5 years related experience
OR Associate's degree with 4 years related experience
OR Bachelor’s degree with 2 years of related experience
OR Master's degree with 1 year of related experience.

Preferred Qualifications

  1. A Bachelor’s degree in computer science, or software engineering.
  2. Professional experience with front-end/UI development for end-user applications.
  3. Competency with a variety of object-oriented and functional programming languages.
  4. Familiarity with test automation, Agile development practices, CI/CD, GitHub, Virtual machines and Docker.
  5. Experience delivering and maintaining high quality, large-scale software to end-users.
  6. Familiarity with scientific computing in the scope of museums and environmental sciences.

Additional Candidate Instructions

A complete application consists of:
  • Resume including a link to a portfolio demonstrating required skills.
    • Preferred: GitHub or other open-source code sharing platform link
  • Preferred: A cover letter addressing how required qualifications are met.
  • Strongly encouraged: 3 Professional or Supervisory References
Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Application review begins on April 11, 2022 and will continue until a pool of qualified applicants is received.

Contact Information to Applicants

Aimee Stewart,

Advertised Salary Range


Work Schedule

Hybrid, 40-hours: M-F

Application Review Begins


Anticipated Start Date


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Posting Information
Posting ID:
Biodiversity Institute
Primary Campus:
University of Kansas Lawrence Campus
Work Location Assignment:
Employee Class:
U-Unclassified Professional Staff
Application Review Begins: