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Senior Data Architect

Deadline: 1 August 2022

Organisation: GiveDirectly

Boston, Massachusetts, United States

Location: Global, Remote

About GiveDirectly

GiveDirectly (GD) aims to reshape international giving – and millions of lives – by providing cash grants directly to the world’s poorest. The Brookings Institution estimates that $70B of cash transfers would be required to eliminate the poverty gap; the aid sector currently spends $135B each year, much of it on evidence-free interventions. GiveDirectly wants to change that, establishing cash transfers as a benchmark for foreign aid – as the index fund is a benchmark for the financial industry – and in the process accelerating the end of extreme poverty.

GD has raised over $700M since launching in 2011, delivered cash to more than 1 million people, and launched offices in 10 countries. We’ve also supported large-scale, experimental research that indicates strong recipient impact of our programs. As a result, GD has been celebrated as one of the most innovative non-profit companies by Fast Company, while the growing cash transfer movement (and GD’s leading role within it) have been featured in the New York Times Magazine, This American Life, Foreign Affairs, and The Economist.

We’re looking for exceptional talent to grow our collaborative, diverse team. Joining GiveDirectly provides the opportunity to work alongside individuals who come from 21 different countries and speak 69 different languages. We’re actively working toward an equitable and inclusive environment for all team members, and seek candidates who will bring diverse perspectives and experiences to our organization. We recruit from organizations across all industries: our team has hailed from sectors including start-ups, government, consultancies, investment banks, and nonprofits.

Across our global offices, our culture is candid, analytical, non-hierarchical, and fast-paced. We value ability, adaptability, and willingness to learn. We offer competitive salary and benefits, as well as bonuses based on organization performance.

About this role

We are seeking a Senior Data Architect to play a leadership role in architecting GD’s central cloud data operations and analytics.. This is a unique opportunity to apply your expertise in the fastest growing non-profit of this century, by leading an infrastructure scaling strategy to keep pace with our growth.

GiveDirectly has quintupled in scale over the last five years, distributing nearly a billion dollars to recipients living in extreme poverty in 11 countries (soon to be 14). As we’ve scaled, the breadth and depth of our data has become unwieldy. Our current data architecture spans multiple systems, including 2 instances of SalesForce (which contain data on the donors who fund GD programs and the recipients we send payments to) and a Finance system of record in Sage Intacct.

To reach the next billion recipients, we are looking for a leader to design, build, and maintain GiveDirectly’s integrated cloud data architecture, including:

Design: Solidify GD’s cloud data architecture and visualization vision, gather cross-functional requirements, and align internal and external stakeholders.
Build: Define the data flows, data relationships & data management across various applications and platforms, and build GD’s enterprise data model, ingestion and database infrastructure.
Manage: Own our new data stack, and deliver combined, transformed, tested, documented data sets to GD’s internal teams; these transformations & datasets will be the foundation of new fundraising products which we expect to raise millions in funding for recipients each year.

If the following questions are on your mind, we want to hear from you:

What’s the most exciting story I could tell with this data?
How can we build a data store that allows us to answer complex and changing business questions?
What design decisions will make our warehouse easy and intuitive to use and maintain?
What if I could be notified of a problem in the data before a business user finds a broken chart?
What do analysts or other business users need to understand about this table to be able to quickly use it?
How can I help teams improve the quality of data as it’s produced, rather than cleaning it downstream?

What you’ll do:

Lead by example from an established track record of successful delivery of enterprise scale solutions (encourage us to be less scrappy).
Take a partner approach to build awareness, increase knowledge, evangelize the value & vision, and syndicate how the new capabilities could drive innovation in our organization.
Champion a culture of innovation and engineering excellence in an environment that requires agility and building scalable, resilient systems
Contribute to the strategy, architecture, and development of GiveDirectly’s enterprise data model; Lead partner selection and oversee implementation, testing and adoption of solutions.
Move GiveDirectly’s data transformation layer from a Sisense reporting tool (in SQL and Python) to cloud storage, including selecting best in class solutions (e.g., dbt, Python).
Work cross-functionally across GD technology teams to develop, deploy, and maintain data pipelines that can transform data from multiple sources into clean datasets; be responsible for data modeling to support data consumption for all forms of reporting and analytics.
Improve core GD processes to automate & optimize data delivery for greater scalability.
Define a strategy to support data flows to Salesforce, Cloud and downstream applications.
Lead the creation of data governance and documentation systems, which will play an increasingly important role in GiveDirectly’s data strategy as we scale.
Continuously and proactively review existing system design for bottlenecks. Recommend and prioritize improvements.

Example projects we expect in the first year:

Donor to recipient mapping: To raise the most money for people living in poverty, we aim to create a relationship between our donors and recipients, so that every donor knows the specific country, program, and person their funds were delivered to. This map will serve as the foundation for digital donor products & reporting, which we expect will generate millions of dollars of incremental revenue and operating efficiencies.
Open Source Accounting: We hope to set the standard for non-profit transparency by creating an externally auditable record of the flows of funds from our various donors through the organization and into the hands of the recipients we serve.

What you’ll bring to the table:

5 or more years of experience as an engineer and/or data architect, including 3 or more years of experience in infrastructure architecture & operations.
3 or more years with highly scalable, resilient, and performant AWS cloud native (PaaS), container, and/or virtual platform (IaaS) solutions.
Proficient in creating and articulating cloud architecture and platform vision effectively to peer technologists.
Experience implementing data models that produce clean, insightful datasets.
Experience implementing and managing data pipelines, with complex relationships and multiple data sources in a cloud environment.
Experience with Data Visualization tools (e.g. – Power BI, Tableau, etc.).
Experience in vendor management including product/service evaluation, contract negotiation, and on-going relationship management
Skilled in detailed-oriented delivery management; results oriented and with a strong customer focus and project management experience in fast-paced, multi-priority environments.
Proficiency driving change, questioning assumptions and pushing for innovative solutions.
Leadership ability to influence all levels of management; You look forward to spending time developing relationships with teams to better understand and meet organizational data needs.
Communication skills to deliver relevant and effective technical and non-technical information to the Board, executives, and employees.
A plus, but not required: AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional and/or AWS Certified Data Analytics certifications.
Alignment with GiveDirectly Values and active demonstration of our core competencies: emotional intelligence, problem solving, project management, follow-through, and fostering inclusivity. We welcome and strongly encourage applications from candidates who have personal or professional experience in the low-income and/or historically marginalized communities that we serve.

Why work at GiveDirectly?

At GiveDirectly, we work to ensure that you have everything you need to excel in your role and on your team, including:

A positive and supportive team with opportunities for advancement.
A demonstrated commitment to helping all staff develop and grow.
A competitive salary.
A robust health benefits plan (exact details will vary by country).
Unlimited PTO (that we encourage staff to take!).
Desk allowance and flexible work location.
Read more about our ongoing diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts here and about our decision to move our central support teams to remote first here.

**GD is committed to observing all local, national and international laws that protect children, vulnerable adults, and basic human rights of all. GD is committed to a policy of “zero tolerance for sexual exploitation, abuse, and harassment (SEAH)” and expects anyone who works for GD to uphold the protection and safeguarding of our recipients as a priority.**

#BI-Remote