Principal Engineer

Oak National Academy

Employment Type Full time
Location Remote · UK Fully Remote
Salary £96,521
Team Engineering
Seniority Senior
  • Closing: 5:00pm, 19th Feb 2024 GMT

Perks and benefits

Flexible working hours
Work from home option
Retirement benefits
Life Insurance
Employee Assistance Programme
Additional parental leave
Enhanced maternity and paternity leave
Paid emergency leave
Extra holiday
Professional development
Payroll giving
Team social events
Equipment allowance

Candidate happiness

8.61 (5406)

Job Description

We are looking for a Principal Engineer to join the Product and Engineering team at Oak National Academy. Oak is creating an openly licensed, fully resourced and AI-enabled curriculum for teachers and pupils in England.

Principal Engineers are the most senior engineers in the team at Oak. In addition to actively building our products, they ensure that our data and applications are as robust and secure as possible, set our coding quality standards and support the rest of the team to deliver high-quality products for our users.

This role will centre around our content and application data. Key uses of this include powering our suite of user-facing web products and downloadable resources, ensuring our AI-enabled features are built on trustworthy and high-quality foundations, and empowering the wider education sector to deliver high-quality new tools and resources for teachers and pupils.

We are therefore looking for highly experienced engineers with specific knowledge of designing and developing APIs, building heavily data-driven web applications, and who are excited to spend their time working on:

  • defining standards relating to our use of content and application data

  • architecting secure open data solutions

  • building custom content management systems

  • designing reliable tools to ingest, manage and export content across a variety of data and document formats

We work in agile ways with mission-focused product squads of developers, designers, researchers and education experts, regularly releasing new features and improvements to give teachers and their pupils quick and easy access to the highest quality learning resources.


  • Responsible for the continuous improvement of highly performant ed-tech applications that are secure, scalable, highly available and accessible to the widest number of users, and that meet Government Digital Service standards.

  • Lead on designing and implementing new areas of the architecture

  • Design and maintain engineering principles and processes to ensure code quality across the team

  • Prioritise an excellent developer experience, ensuring all applications and architecture are well-documented

  • Take an active and exemplary role in the ongoing development of the Oak platform

  • Ensure that all Oak products are accessible to as many people and on as many devices as possible

  • Provide mentorship for less experienced colleagues

  • As a member of the Oak Team, contribute to the planning and culture of the organisation

  • Work in cross-functional and product-oriented squads with colleagues from across the organisation, as required

  • Deputise for Head of Engineering and take on other general responsibilities as required

Knowledge, skills and experience

  • Extensive professional experience leading the development of digital products and services with modern Javascript libraries and tools.

  • Highly experienced in architecting secure and resilient B2C internet products and services, with the ability to facilitate technical decision-making

  • Can demonstrate creating significant value for money when architecting and managing technical solutions

  • Proven success in designing and implementing business-critical internal processes and tools that have a measurable impact on the organisation

  • Confident explaining technical concepts so they can be understood by anyone 

  • A desire to build beautiful, easy-to-use and impactful digital products with an understanding of the importance of accessibility in all its forms

  • An empathetic listener, clear communicator and supportive collaborator

The successful candidate will have a desire to contribute in all areas to ensure Oak is successful. You will be comfortable working at pace and you will continuously look at ways that the team can work more smartly. You will be excellent at working as part of a remote team, building relationships and managing your time effectively.

If this sounds like what you’d love to be doing, we can’t wait to hear from you. If you’re not sure that you exactly fit the above criteria, get in touch anyway. Ability and attitude is just as important as experience!

Next steps

All you need to do is start the process by clicking on the button on the top right.

You’ll answer some questions that are related to your day-to-day job. After the job closes, your answers will go through our sift process: all answers will be anonymised, randomised and then reviewed by a panel of reviewers.

If you are shortlisted, we’ll invite you to the next step, which will be a 30 minute screening call over zoom. After that you may be invited to the next step which involves an interview carried our remotely over zoom and a technical assessment. Also, we love giving feedback, so at the end of the application process we'll share how well you performed.

We are aiming to hold screening calls within a week of receiving your application and formal interviews will start within 2 weeks of the role closing.

We are experiencing really good responses to our job adverts. This may lead us to closing the role early and so if you are considering applying then please get your application in early to avoid missing out.

We are an equal opportunities employer

We are committed to a policy of Equal Employment Opportunity and are determined to ensure that no applicant or employee receives less favourable treatment on the grounds of gender, age, disability, religion, belief, sexual orientation, marital status, or race, or is disadvantaged by conditions or requirements which cannot be shown to be justifiable.

Removing bias from the hiring process

Applications closed Mon 19th Feb 2024


Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be anonymously reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the anonymous review

Applications closed Mon 19th Feb 2024