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Distributed Systems Engineer, Data Platforms - ESPN


Bristol, Connecticut
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Job Details

We have created a Data Platforms group within ESPN technology with the skills, drive, and passion to innovate, create, and deliver amazing capabilities with data. Our passion is focused on disrupting the way ESPN serves sports fans anytime, anywhere. The internet-scale systems provided by the Consumer Data Platforms group are core assets in the delivering the highest quality sports content to over 100M fans monthly. We plan to leverage data, open source software infrastructure, and data science to start a direct-to-consumer revolution. We handle 2 billion events per day with more than 650 columns per event, accumulating to terabytes of data. The team is using Apache open source Big Data Frameworks (Kafka, Spark, Hive, etc.) and NoSQL (Cassandra, Elasticsearch) to get value out of streaming sources and data at rest. We serve large scale APIs to millions of fans that hit 1M requests per minute.

We need an awesome Distributed Systems Engineer to join our team. We are looking for a creative and talented engineer who loves data to help architect and develop our evolving data platform designed to support massive scale structured and unstructured real-time data. You will lead the distributed systems development and operations our data platform and user facing APIs. Data sets include Consumer Data, Sports Data, and Ad Sales Data. Specifically, we are looking for an engineer to establish/support our distributed databases, container platform, cluster manager, distributed systems, datacenter operating system, and service discovery. You will support benchmarking systems, analyze system & query bottlenecks and propose solutions to eliminate them. You must be a self-starter to continuously evaluate new technologies, innovate and deliver solutions for business critical applications.


The ideal candidate is a fearless leader who can lead the design and development of distributed systems infrastructure that is scalable, highly performant, and able to handle diverse data sets. We are looking for a technical leader that is passionate about solving real world large scale business problems by leveraging the latest technologies like Mesos, Kubernetes, Hadoop, Kafka, Spark, Cassandra, ElasticSearch, etc.



  • Build distributed systems – work on improving and adding new functionality to ESPN’s distributed systems backbone.
  • Scale the network – work on tuning and optimizing the delivery of sports data, ads data, and consumer data in a network with thousands concurrent events, unique data scalability challenges and advanced ad selection techniques
  • Keep it running – help troubleshoot data systems and application operational issues.
  • Learn and grow – learn from local experts and expand your skills and responsibilities
  • Design and implement features evolving our data platform product offerings.
  • Develop instrumentation/profiling tools and systems.


Basic Qualifications

  • First-hand experience – Have 6+ years of professional experience focusing on building and managing data distributed systems infrastructure using open source software in a large-scale environment. Experience with Java, C++ or C# is a must.
  • Data Systems Enthusiast – Must have firm understanding of database systems – Data modeling, SQL query Processing and Transactions. Know how to scale systems and make them fast with experience debugging and tracing performance issues.
  • Visionary -- Solid understanding of software development from design and architecture to production.
  • Have a data systems toolbox – Solid understanding and working knowledge of modern operating systems, networking, and/or scalability techniques. Proven skills in scalability analysis and performance monitoring and measuring techniques. Experience with Linux based operating systems is a plus.
  • Problem solver – Enjoy new and meaningful technology or business challenges which require you to think and respond quickly.
  • Passion and creativity – Are passionate about data, technology, & creative innovationTeam player – Enjoy working collaboratively with a talented group of people to tackle challenging business problems so we all succeed (or fail fast) as a team.


Preferred Qualifications

  • Affinity for sports.
  • Proficiency with git.
  • Experience with AWS, Azure, Google Cloud.
  • Experience with Big Data, Apache Cassandra, Kafka, Spark, ElasticSearch, etc.
  • Experience with Open Source technologies such as Mesos or YARN etc.
  • Proficiency with agile development methodologies.Proficiency with linux/unix based systems.


Required Education

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or related technical discipline or its equivalent.