Senior Software Developer

Senior Software Developer

European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)

Hinxton, Cambridge, United Kingdom


About the team/job


The Archival Infrastructure and Technology team is looking for an enthusiastic software developer to work on our project to unify submissions to the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) archives.


The Unified Submission Interface (USI) project is working to create a new programmatic and web-based submission interface for EMBL-EBI archives. This includes resources like BioStudies, BioSamples, the European Nucleotide Archive, the European Genome-Phenome Archive, the European Variation Archive, ArrayExpress, PRIDE and Metabolights.

USI has recently reached production status and this is a unique opportunity to join the team at a critical time while it is ramping up usage and connecting to more archives. Data submission is at the core of the EMBL-EBI mission and USI provides the consolidated way for our users to submit their data to the archives.


The Archival Infrastructure and Technology Team is a diverse and international team of 20 software engineers and bioinformaticians, working on a number of projects including several major international collaborations such as the Human Cell Atlas (HCA) and the Global Alliance for Genomics and Health. The USI represents a small, focused part of this team drawing on the diverse expertise of the wider group.


Your role


As a Software developer/bioinformatician for USI you will be responsible for the technical design, development, delivery, and maintenance of USI services and software. The team uses agile methods and requires the structured use of Jira and Git in a collaborative manner. The teams primarily writes programs in Java and the USI uses a microservices architecture. We value matching the right solution to the right problem and you will have the opportunity to improve and contribute to further development of the architecture.


You’ll be working within the Archival Infrastructure and Technology team at EBI alongside developers, bioinformaticians and ontologists. As part of your day to day job, you can expect to interact with other groups at EMBL-EBI as well as our external collaborators in order to improve submission and update of data in the EMBL-EBI archives.


This position offers exciting opportunities, both to work as part of a team on a large, multi-resources submission interface and to take the initiative in the development of new data processing and submission tools. It would be perfect for a dynamic and motivated individual, especially one with previous software development experience interested in the life sciences or bioinformatics.


You will be able to work independently in order to design solutions to problems as they arise, and succinctly present those solutions to the team Coordinator.  You will need to maintain a strategic overview of the project and will work directly with the Coordinator to steer the team and their immediate tasks in the right direction and ensure successful delivery.


You have



  • Proven experience developing and deploying Java solutions in a production environment. The successful candidate should have a minimum of three years’ experience in production Java programming, including core libraries, JSON parsing, and REST API programming, as well as comfort at the Unix command prompt.

  • Excellent communication skills, ability to work as part of a team of people with a range of skills and a diversity of backgrounds. 

  • Strong experience in multi-year team projects.

  • The ability to build reliable platforms, including unit tests, continuous integration and staged deployment.

  • A willingness to learn others’ code and participate in design and testing.

You might also have



  • Familiarity with with technologies like MongoDB, RabbitMQ, TravisCI, Spring Boot and Gradle is useful but not essential.

  • Practical experience of data management.

  • Knowledge of Agile software development

Knowledge of biology is not required, though you should be willing to learn about specific aspects to support our users’ requirements.




Why join us


At EMBL-EBI, we help scientists realise the potential of ‘big data’ in biology by enabling them to exploit complex information to make discoveries that benefit mankind. Working for EMBL-EBI gives you an opportunity to apply your skills and energy for the greater good. As part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), we are a non-profit, intergovernmental organisation funded by 22 member states and two associate member states. We are located on the Wellcome Genome Campus near Cambridge in the UK, and our 600 staff are engineers, technicians, scientists and other professionals from all over the world.


EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation. The remuneration package comprises a competitive salary, a comprehensive pension scheme and health insurance, educational and other family related benefits where applicable, as well as financial support for relocation and installation. For more information about pay and benefits click here

We have an informal culture, international working environment and excellent professional development opportunities but one of the really amazing things about us is the concentration of technical and scientific expertise – something you probably won’t find anywhere else. If you’ve ever visited the campus you’ll have experienced first-hand our friendly, collegial and supportive atmosphere, set in the beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside. Our staff also enjoy excellent sports facilities including a gym, a free shuttle bus, an on-site nursery, cafés and restaurant and a library.


What else do I need to know


To apply please submit a covering letter and CV through our online system.


Applications are welcome from all nationalities and this will continue after Brexit. For more information please see our website.Visa information will be discussed in more depth with applicants selected for interview.


EMBL-EBI is committed to achieving gender balance and strongly encourages applications from women, who are currently under-represented at all levels. Appointment will be based on merit alone.


Applications will close at 23:00 GMT on the date listed above.


For the full job description, please click here

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: embl-EBI01356

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