Principal Product Engineer, Backend @ a16z - Menlo Park, CA

Job Overview

14 days ago

Principal Product Engineer, Backend

a16z - Menlo Park, CA

Principal Product Engineer, Backend

Founded in 2009 by Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz, Andreessen Horowitz (known as "a16z") is a venture capital firm in Silicon Valley, California, that backs bold entrepreneurs building the future through technology. We are stage agnostic: We invest in seed to late-stage technology companies, across the consumer, enterprise, bio/healthcare, crypto, and fintech spaces. a16z has $28.2B in assets under management across multiple funds, including the $2.9B Bio funds, the $3.1B Crypto funds, and the Cultural Leadership Fund.

We've established a team that is defined by respect for the entrepreneur and the entrepreneurial company building process. We've invested in companies like Airbnb, Apeel, Coinbase, Figma, Freenome, Instacart, Lyft, Slack, and Stripe. Our team is at the forefront of new technology, helping entrepreneurs and their companies impact and change the world.

Community at a16z

We believe the future is built community-first, and we ship novel products and experiences to enable that future.

a16z community connects entrepreneurs, investors, executives, engineers, academics, industry experts, and others in the technology ecosystem to facilitate entrepreneurial company building. We build together, discuss our work, share knowledge, and help one another connect to a network of experts, including technical and executive talent, top media and marketing resources, Fortune 500/Global 2000 companies, and other technology decision makers and influencers.

The Role

In this role, you will architect and implement core services and infrastructure for consumer software. This includes new, critical community products and creating our complete services backend. Successful candidates will be able to demonstrate an ability and history of thoughtfulness and curiosity in designing and implementing rapidly growing backend architectures.

This role will be We're looking for an experienced, detail-oriented software engineer with an enthusiasm for building and scaling feature-rich, well-tested, and polished applications with modern technologies like GraphQL, Elasticsearch, and Postgres. This individual will spearhead core features of our community initiatives and have the opportunity to work in both web2 and web3 capacities.

As an early team member of our core engineering team, you will be working in a startup-like environment with high autonomy and responsibility.

This is a senior, high-visibility role that requires a clear architectural vision, the desire to rapidly code, very fast shipping pace, exacting communication and leadership skills, and the ability to educate our firm on the technology we are developing and shipping.

You will also represent a16z in the communities as an expert member, responding to conversations, seeding ideas, and participating in online community events.

If you are passionate about building and developing technology that creates a meaningful shift in how human beings learn and coordinate online, this is the role for you.

To join our team, you should be excited to:

  • Build, move fast & learn. We ship new & unique technology quickly and often..
  • Develop & define in the 0-1 phase of the product development lifecycle.
  • Architect our approach, tooling, and process to rapidly ship new backend features & services.
  • Develop solutions using web2 & web3 primitives, as needed.
  • Support elegant core product features from start to finish; from conception and research to implementation and iteration, all the way through deployment, maintenance, and future iterations.
  • Communicate holistically & systematically about how parts of our systems fit together from the UX to the underlying APIs and data models.
  • Implement reusable components, libraries, and systems. Harden systems to evade and avoid attack. Practice rigor in separating concerns across the backend.
  • Mentor and train other team members on design techniques and coding standards.
  • Bring positive energy in every interaction with the team, and foster inclusive collaboration.
  • Create the most impactful products & technology of your life.

Minimum Qualifications

  • 9+ years in engineering, in senior IC roles, building modern consumer product backends, APIs and/or services. Strong candidates are likely to have experience in a social network, a high performing API team, a large-scale open source project, or other environment with psychological & analytical rigor. The role can be adapted to your seniority.
  • Proven experience in rapid shipping & consistent excellence in process, ideally in a successful early-stage startup or as a senior IC in a later stage company.
  • Willingness and drive to build across the stack.
  • High EQ: Strong customer empathy; you think critically of how our features impact our community, users, and firm.
  • High IQ: Able to autonomously create novel approaches to complex, unsolved problems and communicate them effectively to nontechnical audiences.
  • Deep knowledge of service & large-scale web application & services architectures.
  • Strong experience at scale with data-oriented products, including probability, statistics, data ingestion/creation, and data at web-scale.
  • Some experience with any of the following: ingestion of public data sources, graphQL, elasticsearch, recommender systems, knowledge graphs, cognitive search, or NLP.
  • Ability to operate under ambiguous and fast-moving problem spaces, often cross-functionally.
  • Bonus: Experience developing metrics for conversational health and engagement.

a16z culture

  • We do only first class business and only in a first class way
  • We take a long view of relationships, because we are in the relationship business
  • We believe in the future and bet the firm that way
  • We are all different, we recognize that, and we win
  • We celebrate the good times
  • We do it for the team
  • We play to win

At a16z we are always looking to hire the absolute best talent and recognize that diversity in our experiences and backgrounds is what makes us stronger. We hire candidates of any race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, marital or family status, disability, Veteran status, and any other status. These differences are what enables us to work towards the future we envision for ourselves, our portfolio companies, and the World.

Andreessen Horowitz hereby reserves the right to make use of any unsolicited resumes received from outside recruiting agencies and / or individual recruiters without being responsible for payment of any fees asserted from the use of unsolicited resumes.

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