Work Worth Doing

Database Engineer (PostgreSQL)

Seneca Systems is looking for a database engineer with significant PostgreSQL experience. As an early member of the team, you will be afforded significant autonomy, equity, and room to grow with the company. We are driven by our values to build incredible software that runs local governments.

Note: Given the size of our team, we can only consider employees who are able to work out of our Redwood City, CA offices.

About our stack

Both cofounders are engineers and philosophy majors who care deeply about architecture. While "it works" is a necessary property of any feature, it is far below our bar to ship. We're focused on taking the time to build a stable platform that can evolve to serve the full range of government needs. Our business depends on it and we wouldn't have it any other way.

Romulus, our CRM platform for local governments, is written in Ruby (riding on Rails) although we have fallen in love with Elixir and are thinking about using it for most future services. Our front end is written primarily in ES6 and ES7 on top of Ember. We use PostgreSQL with PostGIS to handle a variety of geo-spatial needs.

You are looking for:

  • A culture of open source

    We use tons of open source at Seneca Systems and we like sharing back with the community. From writing documentation and fixing bugs to open-sourcing projects we have developed, we believe in giving back. We also believe that open sourcing functionality forces us to write better code, more documentation, and reduce the problem to its core abstractions.

  • Engineers that care about quality

    We want to build the foundation for representative democracy. That isn't something you can just hack together. Architecture, modularity, and developer happiness aren't just part of our process, they're part of who we are.

  • People First Leadership

    We do not promote engineers into management positions simply because they are good engineers. We have found that true leadership, maturity, and communication skills are orthogonal to age or tenure and align our team structure accordingly.

    Our management philosophy is centered around helping maximize our employee's growth and success. If we focus on hiring people who believe in what we are doing, that will naturally translate into a better business.

  • A brilliant and passionate team

    We wholeheartedly believe in what we are doing. We understand that building the software foundation for representative democracy isn’t a problem that everyone is interested in and that’s okay. We’re looking for passionate individuals who love being surrounded by similarly dedicated peers, who want to push themselves and their team to be better human beings.

Your day-to-day will look like:

  • Building a flexible data foundation for cities

    Romulus is a system-of-record for local governments. This includes everything from contact information for millions of citizens to syncing requests with 311 systems. While 85% of cities' day-to-day operations have a consistent structure, each municipality needs to customize its data model for that last 15%.

    You'll work on standardizing the creation and customization of per-customer database schemas and well-tested migration strategies.

    Lastly, you'll work on scaling out postgres deployments, both on our own managed cloud and on-premise for some customers.

  • Implementing end-to-end database security

    Our development philosophy is to push logic as far down the stack as possible. That means leveraging Postgres's authentication and authorization features, from roles to row-level security.

    This also means partitioning customer data, either at the physical level (with separate backends per customer) or via schemas.

  • Tuning dynamic analytic queries across GIS systems

    Government data almost always has a geospatial component. From simply limiting queries to municipal boundaries to finding trends in regional service requests, we will be ingesting varied data and helping our customers turn data into actionable decisions.

    As we integrate across myriad backend services, pulling data from asset management systems, crime reporting databases, and ArcGIS (to name a small sample), you'll work with our product team to develop powerful data-intelligence software.

Candidate sketch:

  • 3+ years of experience in database administration, engineering, or equivalent.
  • Living in the Bay Area or open to relocate. Our offices are in sunny Redwood City.
  • High potential. Whether you're 25 or 50, you want to grow your skills as an engineer.
  • Empathy. You care about people and want to learn how you can help them.
  • Self-awareness. You want to get better, which sometimes means identifying areas of weakness.


Salary: $140,000 base

Equity: 90,000 option grant (approximately .81% of the company)


Apply here!