Jobs at FT Labs
We are looking for people to join us and help make the internet a nicer place. Please choose the kind of job that you are interested in for specific details about each role, and note the general info about the company below.
- Test engineer – Creating and managing tests within our QA process, ensuring that we deliver consistently high quality software
- PHP Developer – LAMP software engineering, web development, planning and building web applications
Working at FT Labs
Being part of the labs team is a commitment to drive yourself beyond your own expectations, constantly adapt and learn new technologies, and be able to apply yourself to any challenge (read more about FT Labs). Here are some of the benefits you’ll receive:
- Flexible working, including freely adjustable working hours and relocation of public holidays to any date that suits you
- Small team in a start-up like environment
- Full access to Pearson Plc industry leading benefits and pension scheme
- Private medical healthcare
- Interest free season ticket loan
- Premium digital subscription to the FT
- Wide variety of discounts including Penguin books
- Sponsorship for qualifications and certifications as appropriate
- As much free fruit as you can eat
- Great coffee
- Conferences and developer events
- Team lunch on Fridays
- Peaceful, well designed working environment purpose built for us in Brook Green, west London
- Office dog
Visit our dedicated online application site, and upload your CV or portfolio. For engineering roles, there is then an opportunity to have a crack at our (exciting and interesting) online skills assessment to evaluate your competencies in our key skill areas. If you’re successful you will be invited to interview over Skype, where you’ll normally do some collaborative problem solving with an existing member of our team. If the video interview is successful we’ll invite you to come and see us at our office in west London for a final interview.
The best candidates show initiative by applying to us directly. If you apply via a recruitment agent, this will not create the best first impression, and to date we have never successfully hired anyone via a third party.
We are a very small company, and we need more people who think in the same way we do. To fit in with our team you must be highly motivated, able to manage your own schedule effectively but proactively integrate with the rest of the team. The following list summarises some the qualities that we’re looking for in candidates generally:
- Proactive in team participation
- Very high standard of written English
- Co-operative and friendly attitude to colleagues, management and clients
- Excellent timekeeping (you will be required to file timesheets daily)
Here’s how we rate on the Joel test, which several people have asked us to complete:
- Do you use source control?
Yes, of course. We use Bazaar and Git.
- Can you make a build in one step?
Some of our applications include a build step, some don’t. Where they do, yes, you can always make a build in one step.
- Do you make daily builds?
Normally dozens of times a day.
- Do you have a bug database?
We have a comprehensive suite of tools for capturing user reports, automatically tracking and aggregating run time errors on production systems, alerting continuous integration test failures and dealing with QA feedback from internal test engineers. We use a combination of a home grown tool, Jenkins, Splunk and Redmine.
- Do you fix bugs before writing new code?
Trivial bugs are fixed straight away, more complex bugs are logged as they’re found and then planned into future sprints.
- Do you have an up-to-date schedule?
Yes, though how far into the future that goes depends on the agility of the project
- Do you have a spec?
We use Redmine, an agile task tracker, to plan our sprints and feature requirements.
- Do programmers have quiet working conditions?
We have a purpose built office designed to our requirements, and we try to keep distractions to a minimum.
- Do you use the best tools money can buy?
Equipment costs a lot less than time. We make sure our staff are never unproductive because they don’t have the tools to do the job. That said we’re not into buying flashy kit or software just for the sake of it
- Do you have testers?
- Do new candidates write code during their interview?
Yes. Candidates technical skills are assessed via an online test in order to qualify for an interview, and further assessed during interview with collaborative problem solving.
- Do you do hallway usability testing?
Yes – the most valuable usability expert is someone that doesn’t know they are one.
The right opportunity
Working at FT Labs is always a learning experience. We encourage staff to get involved in individual advancement and professional certification programmes, and will sponsor certification exams where appropriate. Our team is on the cutting edge of web development and we want it to stay there.
Your schedule is your own. We run a low-overheads office precisely because we recognise that we don’t need everyone in the office all the time. We are keen to try and maximise the value of your time and will design a schedule around your preferred working style, whether you prefer early mornings so you can get a head start or would rather take a longer lunch hour so you can go to the gym, the work revolves around you.
The right person
Pearson is an equal opportunities employer. In recruiting staff we are concerned with nothing other than the ability of the person to do the job, subject to the qualities outlined above. If you are employed to work in our London office, you will be required to maintain an appropriate (but reasonably informal) dress code, and should not be fearful of our dog (she freely roams around the whole office and may visit you occasionally).
The next step
If you would like to be considered, please apply online.
Agencies and recruiters please read our recruiter guide before sending us applicants, otherwise we reserve the right to recruit them and not pay you anything.