Tech Director Position

Position: Full-time Tech Director

Start date: 01 December 2021 (Immediately if available)

Location: You do not have to be based in South Africa. You can work remotely from anywhere in the world*.

Deadline to apply: 29 October 2021

Salary: R60,000 to R87,000 per month (Around USD 4100 to USD 6000 per month) 

Position Summary: 

amandla.mobi is looking for a Tech Director who is committed to using tech to help build real power for Black people, especially low-income Black women. We’re looking for someone who can manage our full-stack, part-time developers and different projects. Our work is fast passed and priorities can shift quickly to best serve our members and seize opportunities to win advocacy campaigns.

The Organisation:

amandla.mobi leads campaigns that build real power for Black people, with a particular focus on low-income Black women. We challenge injustice by bringing together our community in critical moments to take targeted, coordinated and strategic action to bring real change. Our work is to connect people so that our collective voices have maximum impact and power to hold political and corporate interests to account and advance solutions that build a more just and people-powered Mzansi. Together for justice! www.amandla.mobi.

* All other full-time amandla.mobi staff are based in South Africa, we are, however looking far and wide for the ideal candidate, which is why the position can be done remotely. Applicants who are not in the same time zone should bear in mind that you would have to adjust your working hours so at least 50% overlap with 9am to 5pm South African Standard Time. We are unable to assist with work permits or relocation to South Africa.

Responsibilities:

The tech director will be the primary technical person within the organisation and will be responsible for creating strategic plans and organising day to day work, as well as being hands-on with systems themselves every day. 

  • Contribute to the organisation’s mission of building real power for Black people, especially low-income Black women, by leading amandla.mobi’s tech work to help enable our 1 million members to amplify their collective voices.
  • Work closely with the rest of the team, our partners and members, to ensure our tech enables our campaigns to have a greater impact than ever before.
  • Manage existing part-time developers and service providers while working with the Executive Director and management team to develop a plan to build the organisations tech capacity for the future.
  • Developing systems for tech training and tech support for amandla.mobi team, members and partners.
  • Managing core tech infrastructure, contracts, service providers and international collaborations.
  • Will be able to do a 180 and drop or pick up projects based on the organisation’s needs. The organisation has to be extremely responsive to political, economic and social developments, so the Tech Director will work closely with the rest of the team to ensure our tech is responsive while not losing sight of important but not urgent work. 
  • Keep up with trends and dramatic shifts in the tech, digital and communications space, and minimise disruptions and manage changes so the organisation can always communicate and coordinate with its members and partners to run high impact campaigns.
  • Manages risks in terms of digital security, uptime, and data privacy and helps ensure our tech stack and processes are cost-effective and monitored.
  • The ideal candidate will have deep experience working at the intersection of technology, advocacy and civic action, is an experienced manager and can demonstrate their values align with amandla.mobi’s mission, approach, values and community.

Ideal experience and skills:

Successful candidates will be flexible and adaptable, able to work with a range of software and data systems single-handedly, and have good communication skills. 

To properly manage our technology resources and make smart decisions about service providers and staffing for all our tech needs, our Tech Director would ideally be experienced as a project manager, including managing external sub-contractors, part-time developers, and innovative technology projects. They should be:

  • Able to manage their own time and prioritise in a fast-moving context, balancing long and short term needs appropriately.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills will be very advantageous.
  • Experience dealing with internal and external stakeholders and support needs; prioritising and sequencing projects.
  • A keen eye for managing long-term support and maintenance burdens to serve tech-enabled advocacy tools for our members, and to stay flexible over the long term.
  • The ability to set and stick to budgets and priorities; understanding when to say ‘no’ to a request and when to change course to meet an urgent need; and experience recruiting, hiring, and managing staff.
  • A good understanding of the new technologies being developed today and how they affect us in the world of quick, scalable web and mobile systems development; the ability to research and make decisions about emerging tools in areas such as DevOps, cloud deployments, deferred processing, performance monitoring and optimisation, and relational databases.

The role will also require hands-on work across the entire web applications stack, and so the following experience and skills would be useful:

  • General-purpose programming experience with knowledge of the entire web applications stack ( a “full-stack” programmer).
  • Experience managing cloud-based infrastructure with variable loads.
  • A good understanding of the infrastructure required for large scale web and mobile applications deployment. 
  • Experience of multiple solution architectures and systems deployments would be advantageous or evidence of a breadth of practical knowledge in this area.
  • Experience of Ruby, and frameworks such as Rails, would be nice to have.
  • Experience in our domain-specific campaigning and online/ mobile engagement tools is preferred but not required:
  • Experience with the following technologies would be advantageous:
    • Email-based and/or mobile-based content management and CRM systems.
    • Email delivery and assessment, and related tools like SendGrid or Amazon SES.
    • Data analysis and data tools such as Metabase. 
    • Social media integration, Google Analytics, A/B testing and optimisations.
    • Mobile communication channels, specifically bulk SMS, and WhatsApp.

Communication and collaboration:

  • Is a good listener, seeks to understand needs, is empathetic, and can communicate effectively with less technical people.
  • Is able to work collaboratively with others to reach common goals and objectives.
  • Is a self-starter, has initiative, and a relentless focus on output and delivering results.
  • Is able to work effectively in an organisation whose staff currently works remotely.
  • Has a strong sense of responsibility, self-awareness, integrity, humility, and discretion.
  • A sense of humour.

We are part of the global OPEN Network the-open.net, and parts of the tech stack are also used by other OPEN organisations. You will be part of a friendly and diverse community working with similar technologies and challenges around the world. 

We encourage all candidates, and especially those from groups underrepresented in the tech sector, especially Black women, to apply even if you do not meet all the skills and experience for the role. If you have any questions about the role, please do not hesitate to contact us at [email protected]

Application process and deadline:

The first step of the recruitment process will be to complete the online application form which includes providing us with some personal information, uploading a short CV of 1-3 pages and answering some questions.

Applicants will be notified by email by 05 November 2021 as to whether they will proceed to the next round of the application process which will involve an interview and further practical exercises.