DevOps Engineer

DevOps Engineer

European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)

Hinxton, Cambridge, United Kingdom


About the team/job


We are seeking to recruit an enthusiastic, highly motivated DevOps engineer to work at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) located at the Wellcome Genome Campus near Cambridge in the UK.

You will be working in the Software Development and Operations team led by Sarah Butcher, within the Technical Services Cluster (TSC). The team develops, adapts, maintains and operates open source software to deliver services for our internal and external users.

One aspect of the team’s work is to establish the tools and processes for our own use that are needed to build cloud portable applications that can be deployed on our public web services infrastructure based on Docker Enterprise, VMware, our internal OpenStack cloud (6000+ cores) or public clouds (e.g. Google, Amazon & Azure). Some projects are partly or completely externally funded, and contribute to ongoing collaborations within ELIXIR – a research infrastructure for life sciences, and the Global Alliance for Global Health (GA4GH – (http://genomicsandhealth.org/ ) – an international alliance of 500+ leading organizations in research, healthcare, life sciences, and IT working together to create standards of responsible sharing of genomic data.

Other projects include the EBI Cloud Portal which simplifies the experience for researchers when running their workloads across different cloud providers, and the Authentication, Authorisation and Profile service offering centralised user identity and role management for different services at EMBL-EBI.


Your role


You will use your DevOps skills to actively participate in design of new systems as well as features in existing ones, contributing to a number of projects in the team portfolio and assisting development teams in troubleshooting production issues.

You will develop, deploy and maintain production-grade web-based systems, as well as designing and provisioning their infrastructure and managing configuration. You will also set up and maintain CI/CD pipelines, both for VM-based and container-based deployments and develop and extend internal tools to streamline and automate workflows. You will also contribute by containerising applications and by designing and delivering systems to container orchestration platforms (Kubernetes). You will also play an active role in evaluating new tools and technologies for integration into our service offering coming from the open-source communities. You will communicate technical documents, take part in the daily Scrum, and provide user orientated communication with external and internal users of the systems.

You will work closely alongside other software developers and DevOps engineers in the team. You will be working with early adopters at EMBL-EBI and with external collaborators across ELIXIR to collect requirements and gather feedback to support the development and roll-out of the software.


You have


You will have a bachelor’s degree or higher in computer science, software development or have equivalent experience, and you will have demonstrated experience in continuous development. You will be highly proficient in Python and be fluent in Linux-based development. Prior work experience should include four or more year’s software development in a team environment and supporting production systems in an academic or commercial setting.You should also have experience in communicating and working with expert users (e.g. in a science community).

As well as having a good working knowledge of Linux systems administration and shell scripting, you will have demonstrable practical experience using container technologies (e.g. Docker) and deployment to private/public cloud environments. You will understand modern web applications, exposing RESTful APIs (particularly Python Flask; Spring Boot) and have experience in source code management CI/CD and automation tooling (e.g. Git, GitLab CI/CD, Terraform and Ansible).
The ability to work within a team and in collaboration with others is critical to this position and excellent communication skills, verbal and written, are essential. An ability to work to tight deadlines is essential as are excellent English language skills and the knowledge and experience to work with minimal direction when making technical decisions.

You will be able to pay attention to detail but also meet deadlines. You will also demonstrate innovation and a willingness to take on new challenges. You will use software development best practices, have a passion for code development and making software that can be used.

The ability to work within a team and in collaboration with others is critical to this position and excellent communication skills, verbal and written, are essential. An ability to work to tight deadlines is essential as are excellent English language skills and the knowledge and experience to work with minimal direction when making technical decisions.

You will have a passion for code development and making software that can be used, embracing innovation and with a willingness to learn.


You might also have


Strong programming skills in Java and other JVM languages, Front-end development experience (HTML, JavaScript, and modern JS frameworks are of particular interest) and experience with implementation/delivery to container-based platforms (Kubernetes) would all be advantageous. An understanding of and experience with ORM frameworks (e.g. SQLAlchemy, Hibernate) is also desirable, together with practical experience using NoSQL databases. You may have had previous exposure to use of File and Object Storage and file transfer protocols, and ELK stack or other log analysis solutions.

You may be familiar with agile development practices and the full software development lifecycle in a team environment, and have experience writing and supporting scientific workflows and pipelines; perhaps also including those using bioinformatics tools.


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 view a copy of the full job description please click here

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.

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: embl-EBI01389

Favorite