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Backend/Machine Learning Engineer


San Mateo, CA, USA

(or remote within US timezones)

Job Type:




About the Role:

UPDATE: We've just filled this role, but Storytell is growing fast and we expect to be re-opening it as we grow. Please apply if you're interested and we'll reach out to you once we're in an active hiring mode again.

Which OKR(s) is this role tied to:

We drive alignment and focus via our Vision, Mission, Strategy and OKRs. Learn more.

  • Create a top-notch product that users love.

  • Build the infrastructure to provide north star metric for the whole company.

About the role:

The Backend/Machine Learning Engineer will focus on building the backend and machine learning systems. The person’s primary responsibility is to create infrastructure to support new product features and to improve and maintain the existing systems. The candidate should be extremely capable, willing to get their hands dirty, excited about joining an early-stage company, and thrives off of the pressures and challenges of working in an unstructured environment.

This role reports into: Jing Conan Wang, our CTO

Job responsibilities:

This is the scope of work the job entails — although we are all Crew, so we help each other succeed outside of these core responsibilities

  • Primary responsibility is to create infrastructure to support new product features

  • Responsibility to improve and maintain the existing systems.

Requirements for this role:

These are the minimum requirements we are looking for in this role

  • 2+ years of work experience in a production software development environment or building data systems, or 1+ years of work experience plus a degree in ML, Engineering, Computer Science, or other relevant disciplines

  • Experience with the design and architecture of large-scale ML Systems

  • Experience building production-quality code incorporating testing, evaluation, and monitoring using object-oriented programming like Python/Java

  • Comfortable with distributed systems, big data, and data-intensive systems

  • Strong communication and teamwork skills

  • Experience maintaining or developing applications using large-scale data stack, e.g, BigQuery, GraphQL, Kafka, Flink, Cassandra, Redis

  • Passionate about productivity and storytelling

The ideal candidate also has:

The ideal candidate will also have these skills in addition to the minimums above

  • 5+ years of work experience in a production software development environment or building data systems, or 3+ years of work experience plus a degree in ML, Engineering, Computer Science, or other relevant disciplines

  • Be able to drive the design and implementation of a large-scale system from end to end

  • Interest in advanced infrastructure for Deep Learning, NLP, or Recommender Systems

What does "Great" look like for this role?

This is how you'll know you're performing this job at a level of excellence

  • Lives our Shared Values

  • Be able to deliver and execute with minimal guidance

  • Operate with a growth mindset

  • Ability to balance speed with long-term thinking

  • Proactively thinking about system improvement and unblocking fellow team members

  • Has adaptability & change agility — this is an ever-changing role with many surprises in store!

We will happily sponsor H1-B Visa.
Learn about our Vision, Mission and Strategy:

Storytell is distilling signal from noise by creating and recommending Story Tiles™.

We are building AI-driven platform that converts any content into Story Tiles™ and uses AI & ML to create useful knowledge — “stories” — to break down organizational silos internally, and fuel go-to-market and recruiting efforts externally.

Dig into our Vision, Mission and Strategy here.

Our Shared Values:

We believe that being aligned on our shared values is the foundation of how we build, belong, and how we show up for each other and to the broader ecosystem. You can find our shared values here.

How We Work Together:

There are many ways to build an amazing company culture and we’re on our journey to define ours. So we ask you for your investment, participation, and intentionality in co-creating the unique culture at Storytell.

We believe in hiring the best talent around the globe; that’s why we have a “distributed first” mindset. For our first dozen hires, we are prioritizing candidates in time zones in or close to US Pacific time to help us collaborate together.


We intentionally look for those who are a value add to our culture. We have internal compensation band transparency to ensure equal pay. We default to asynchronous communication. By reducing the number of meetings, we can build a scalable asynchronous culture and enable us to collaborate across time zones as we grow.

Though we are distributed, we know that nothing replaces the connection that is created in person. That’s why we prioritize in-person offsites, and pay for a WeWork office near you. Each department is empowered and enabled with a healthy budget to hold department-level offsites.

We believe that the small things in work-life really matter and add up. Micro-moments of connection during our work days are essential. We use quarterly OKRs that map to annual goals to ensure that we’re all focused on the most meaningful and impactful work that aligns with our business goals.

Don't Meet Every Single Requirement?

Studies have shown that women and people of color are less likely to apply to jobs unless they meet every single qualification. At Storytell we are dedicated to building a diverse, inclusive and authentic workplace, so if you’re excited about this role but your past experience doesn’t align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyways. You may be just the right candidate for this or other roles.

We offer you an opportunity to:

  • Work directly with our C-level executive team

  • Exercise your problem-solving skills

  • Learn the fundamentals of a startup

  • Grow in your career journey through support on many dimensions, such as:

  • 1:1s

  • Regular trainings

  • Learning and practicing clean communication

  • Build our systems and processes

  • Make a huge contribution to the future of Storytell, AI – and the world!

  • We will support you if you want to become a Founder someday

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