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Senior Backend Developer

About the role

We are looking for a Senior Backend Developer, that has experience working in an agile environment, to join one of our cross-functional development teams. At SamKnows, we're on a mission to make the internet better for everyone and in doing so, we collect huge volumes of data from a variety of different sources that is all processed by our Backend Development team.

We're looking for someone to contribute directly to both external and internal projects, including our core analytics and data processing platforms. Through our web services APIs, those core platforms power applications that are used daily by international public and private sector clients, as well as lots of private citizens.

At SamKnows our Backend Development team processes huge amounts of data to produce quality APIs which power our various Frontend Javascript applications and mobile applications in addition to background off-line and near-line processing. We pride ourselves in developing solid projects, powered by Symfony 3/4 components, that incorporate good practices, such as comprehensive unit and functional test suites, and integrate common industry principles.

You're are a smart, well-rounded Backend Developer who enjoys solving complex problems using clean, efficient, and performant methods and putting those solutions into action whilst working in a team. Your knowledge of PHP should be deep and broad, and you should have at least 4 years of industry or equivalent experience with PHP and MVC frameworks such as Symfony, Zend Framework or Laravel. Further, you should also be comfortable gathering requirements, estimating task sizes, and managing expectations.

You have at least 4 years of experience with SQL databases and consider yourself comfortable with writing complex SQL for use on database engines such as MySQL or PostgreSQL. We use a range of big data technologies such as Hadoop, Presto, and Hive extensively within our team and experience with these technologies would be a great asset; however we're happy for you to learn and gain experience with these technologies at the company.

Essential Technical Skills

  • PHP 7 with an MVC framework (Symfony preferred)
  • Strong SQL (MySQL preferred)
  • Git

Desirable Skills

  • API development
  • Automated testing (functional, integration and unit testing)
  • Linux CLI basics (e.g. Apache / PHP configurations)
  • Grounding in mathematics/statistics
  • Hadoop / HDFS / Presto
  • Docker
  • Experience working in Agile teams
  • Experience working in cross-functional teams


We offer the following benefits (as well as awesome colleagues, engaging work, and the opportunity to help us make the internet better for everyone)!


25 days holiday each year plus bank holidays. You can sell back any unused holiday, but we strongly encourage you to take them.

Great office location

Whether you’re working at our London office, nestled just behind the Tate Modern and a stone’s throw from Borough Market, or in Washington at Tyson’s Corner, there’s plenty of culture, eateries, drinking holes, and interesting things to do.

Flexible working

Whether your child's ill, you're waiting for a package, or you have some deep-focused work to do, we all work from home from time to time.

Maternity and paternity leave

Paid maternity, paternity, and adoption leave, which you’re eligible for if you join SamKnows more than 13 weeks before your expected date of childbirth or adoption.


SamKnows have a private pension scheme and will contribute 5% to your pension if you contribute a minimum of 2%.

Private health & dental care

Private health insurance with AXA PP Healthcare, includes dentist and optician cover. Paid sick leave (for both your physical and mental health).

Hardware of your choice

Choose your own equipment and we’ll do our best to get them for you before you start.

Learning and training

We’ll contribute towards books, training courses, and conferences that help you learn and grow in your career here.

Interest free season ticket loan

Not for your favourite football team – for you to get into work for less! Pay back the loan in your monthly pay check before tax.