About UMass Amherst
UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.
Under the general direction of the Director of Information Technology (IT) in the Manning College of Information and Computer Sciences (CICS), the Senior Database & Web Engineer has primary responsibility for the design and operation of the College’s databases and web applications. This position establishes design standards, develops backup/recovery plans and makes recommendations to College leadership for major system changes.
- Responsible for managing the College's suite of database applications, including Filemaker-based applications.
- Responsible for building and regularly improving database application design and functionality in order to meet the growing needs of the College. Works directly with various College groups such as Academic Programs, Human Resources, and IT in order to assess data needs and brainstorm ways to improve existing database applications or create new ones.
- Migrates legacy database applications to modern web-based frameworks or to cloud-based software, as applicable.
- Designs and implements full-stack web applications with database backends.
- Designs efficient data integration methods to and from various campus and College data sources into the College’s suite of applications.
- Optimizes database application performance, as needed, by tuning database queries and database schemas.
- Provides basic training and support to staff for using current applications. Consults with end-users to troubleshoot issues and implement fixes.
- Pays particular attention to each group’s goals and reporting needs. Finds ways to take the information in each database and generate reports that are easy to read and understand in making high level decisions in the College.
- Ensures that all operating system, database, and application software updates and patches are applied in a timely manner. Upgrades database applications to new software versions, as needed.
- Consults and works with the Director of IT on best practices for automation and process improvements to ensure that they are consistent across the board. Documents best practices and procedures. Trains and advises other members of the CICS IT team on these procedures.
- Leads and participates in group and technical reviews to ensure that application design decisions meet long-term objectives.
- Triages user issues and handles daily systems tickets.
Performs other related duties as assigned.
Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)
- Bachelor’s degree and six (6) years’ relevant experience OR a Master’s degree with four (4) years of relevant experience OR an equivalent combination of education and experience.
- Experience with building databases from scratch and troubleshooting existing databases such as FileMaker or Microsoft Access.
- Experience with relational databases such as MySql or PostgreSQL.
- Strong understanding of relational databases and web applications.
- Experience with data management, organization, storage, and security.
- Outstanding listening skills. Strong oral and written communication skills with the ability to communicate technical issues and solutions to technical and non-technical end-users.
- Ability to create tailored reports for College leadership on short notice to meet the data reporting needs of the College.
- Strong organizational skills with the ability to prioritize work and complete assignments in an efficient and effective manner, balancing the demands of concurrent and potentially competing projects.
- Ability to work both independently and to be part of an effective team with a highly cooperative and collaborative work style. Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to interact effectively, and create and maintain harmonious relationships with a diverse population of staff, faculty, students, and off-campus constituents.
- Independent initiative. Must have the ability to stay on task and work productively with a minimal amount of supervision or guidance. Willingness to take on a variety of tasks related to the successful operation of the College’s IT group and the College as appropriate.
Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)
- Experience and ability to manage formal software releases for production environments.
- Experience with using DevOps tools such as Ansible, Puppet, Jenkins, GitLab, Vagrant, etc.
- Full stack development experience and experience with open source databases.
- Experience with front end development with React or Angular and back-end development with nodejs, ruby, php.
- Experience with programming and databases: python, scala, couchdb, mongodb.
- Experience using REST API’s.
- Experience with migrating legacy applications to cloud-hosted applications.
Physical Demands/Working Conditions
Typical office environment.
- Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm.
- May be required to work occasional nights and weekends.
- This position has the opportunity for a hybrid work schedule, which is defined by the University as an arrangement where an employee’s work is regularly performed at a location other than the campus workspace for a portion of the week. As this position falls within the Professional Staff Union, it is subject to the terms and conditions of the Professional Staff Union collective bargaining agreement.
Special Instructions to Applicants
Applicants must submit a resume, cover letter, and the names and contact information for 3 professional references.
UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, caste, creed, sex, age, marital status, national origin, disability, political belief or affiliation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related condition(s), veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, genetic information, natural and protective hairstyle and any other class of individuals protected from discrimination in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University. To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans. It is the policy of UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.