Insist on CTO role. It’s a “work until all the obstacles are removed for the teams” kind of job, which abides to no schedule. However, after the CEO talked to the same outside consultants that are making the product to get their advice, the job spec came back to me as "Director of Engineering". Getting ready for their first day and watching the team welcome that new person like a family member gives me great pride for the engineering team and culture our team has worked so hard to build. Although we plan and test well, we’re always prepared to firefight. In-source their top team members to work for you and close out the contract. A few things I'd think about -- unless the outside consultants are also investors, I'd be rather concerned that they are self interested parties. Co-founder is very specific. It’s not a “check in at 9 and check out at 5” kind of job. As a quick background, the company is 2 years old and has just taken on their first major funding round (over $1M, but under $5M). Our engineering team does not have a conventional org. Director is a manager of managers (and thus teams). I've been a founder, a co-founder, and I completely get that this is an employee who is getting some equity as well, not a founding role. Be careful of bloating your title as someone have said, because when the company need to bring in someone with more experience and qualification, say an actual engineering director, he's not going to want to join under someone less qualified than him. Being an engineering leader can be difficult. So on some level this is a red flag. VP implies more of an executive/ leadership role similar to a C-level. The company is less than 10 employees, not more than 10. I recently got a proposal from a company to work as their main and only in-house technical person. If you want to be in charge of the direction of the company on the tech side of things then 100% fill the top position now while it's early on. When he was needed elsewhere, Chris could rely on me to lead the team and our efforts, which is why I believe he passed the torch to me and promoted me to Director of Engineering in the summer of 2013. A FOUNDING MEMBER. Executive Vice President is a top VP, and is often an interchangeable with CTO. Some engineers will be tasked with determining the candidate’s technical depth on certain technologies. The job description is a technical track, not management track. I’ll bring a balance by arguing the opposite. As our team, product, and infrastructure grows, issues arise consistently regarding systems/processes/environments that no longer work at our current scale. We are on track to book around 8MM this year. do we need to build for scale? So if they are slating you as a director, they are expecting you to run multiple teams, possibly with EMs to hire. Everything we’ve built, including the team itself, has been done together as a team. The saving grace for us in our hiring efforts has been that our engineering teams have extremely low turnover. Technical manager basically. Directors are also responsible for setting or approving policies, establishing department guidelines and managing a budget. At this point, the engineers on the project and I are on the same page, which means I can get started on project management. Point is that the business fundamentals are potentially more important than the role itself. Be sure to read and follow all of our rules--we have specific places for common content and requests. 28 Nov 2020 accessed. This is where the director of engineering comes into play. This is the first internal technical hire. Good luck! The second is consistently delivering projects on-time with quality. However, if you don’t get along with them, and there’s a power battle between you and them then this will get messy fast. I better get my ass into gear.”. Senior Engineering Manager is an experienced manager that runs a larger (or multiple) teams/companies. Basically learn everything you can from the consultants, and leap frog them. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts. I led scrum, sprint retrospective, and was working with the team to scale and improve team processes and engineering culture. And by coming in as a director, that means they want to have cap room to bring in a VP/CTO. While I am responsible for the teams and their actions, these are our teams. In late 2011, we changed our business model to hold inventory so that we could deliver the experience we knew our customers wanted. Each week I meet with our VP of Product, Head of Design, CTO, and CEO where I communicate the state of all of our web & mobile engineering efforts as well as discuss product’s current priorities and the upcoming roadmap. For example, Chris, our CTO, recently laid out his long-term technology roadmap and there are a lot of new technologies we’ll be using to build out his vision. But if the company grows larger, your responsibilities and roles will change, and title may affect that. Web. This role would make the executive decisions about technology, including stuff like application architecture, software selection, coding standards, etc. If you only managed or are expected to manage less than 5 engineers, a title of "tech lead" or "senior engineer" is more suitable. Given your job description, it's really more suitable to be just a "software engineer" title. This is when Michael Santhanam, formerly VP of Operations Engineering at Netflix, joined thredUP as our VP of Engineering. To arrange projects that align with these goals, I need to work with product to figure out the roadmaps for our teams. The title is meaningless unless the company goes somewhere. To speak on the clarity of the roles, I like to think of military analogies in engineering management: Engineering Manager is a base level manager that runs a team (military company). Even though our VP of Engineering doesn’t actively code anymore, he is an excellent architect because of his prior engineering experience. Job description is for a Director of Engineering. You'll have less expectations because you really don't have the experience for executive management. He works very closely with our COO, VP of Analytics, and our merchandizing team. You're the only developer at the company. If you like being in the garage, coding, doing devops, scaling, managing a few engineers, and making sure shit actually works this is not a bad position. There’s never a day where I wake up and say “I don’t want to go to work today”. I've always seen the main technical guy at a startup called the CTO or Technical Co-founder - I've been both before. The majority of my time each week is spent on management, project planning, and project management, which are intertwined responsibilities for me. As a technical leader, I consider it my responsibility to find a solution to those issues (often with the help of the team) as well as putting together a plan of action to execute that solution. New comments cannot be posted and votes cannot be cast, Welcome to /r/startups, the place to discuss startup problems and solutions. When candidates moves past a phone screen and into the interview pipeline, my job is to assemble the right interviewing team to assess what we need to know about this candidate, which is unique to the candidate’s background and the position they’re interviewing for. Our VP of Engineering and I both report directly to our CTO. I have a director of engineering in a 300+ people company, moved to Amazon and now his title is just engineering manager. Title doesn't really matter that much, especially for small startups.