Ensembl Front-End Web Developer

We’re looking for a web-developer to work on our new genome browser. We’re looking for masters in computer science or bioinformatics, with experience developing web interfaces using Javascript, HTML, CSS3, React, a scripting language and Github. Closes 16th September.

Location: EMBL-EBI Hinxton near Cambridge, UK
Staff Category: Staff member
Contract Duration: 3 years
Grading: 5 (monthly salary starting at £2632 after tax). For more information about pay and benefits click here
Closing Date: 16 September 2018
Reference Number: EBI_01277

Job Description

Ensembl seeks a front end web developer (JavaScript, CSS and HTML) to work on our next generation website. The Genomics Technology Infrastructure team, based at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI), both designs and develops web-based data visualisations for genomic data. Ensembl, and its associated projects, are a suite of highly valued scientific resource that support biological research worldwide with millions of visitors per year.

You will be working within the Ensembl team, which is composed of over 70 people including web developers, designers, trainers, engineers, annotators and researchers to develop novel and scalable visualisations for genomic data using cutting edge web technology in a fast-moving domain. The Ensembl platform provides access to over 40,000 genomes served from one of the world’s largest computer resources for genomic analysis. We develop open source software which, along with our data, is available to all without restriction. Thousands of scientists worldwide depend on access to these data and software to aid their research and push our understanding of the genome. Genomics is one of the fastest growing areas of science with the ability to deliver advances in human health, food security and in an aging population.

You will become part of the Ensembl Front-End web development team and participate on our project to build a next-generation website for genome data. Their responsibilities would include:

  • Working to create our next-generation website including a new client-side genome browser
  • Developing novel visualisations for genomic data
  • Working closely with our in-house designer to define and implement visualisations
  • Collaboration with our outreach team to engage in user interviews and user centric design during the design and implementation of the platform
  • Contributing to the service delivery of the Ensembl sites
  • Continuing development and maintenance of our existing website infrastructure
  • Working closely with other members of Ensembl front-end web development team, other teams in Ensembl, for example data production teams, and other groups across EMBL-EBI.

At EMBL-EBI, we help scientists realise the potential of ‘big data’ in biology by enabling them to exploit complex information to make discoveries that benefit mankind. Working for EMBL-EBI gives you an opportunity to apply your skills and energy for the greater good.As part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), we are a non-profit, intergovernmental organisation funded by 23 member states and two associate member states and proud to be an equal-opportunity employer. We are located on the Wellcome Genome Campus near Cambridge in the UK, and our 600 staff are engineers, technicians, scientists and other professionals from all over the world.

Qualifications and Experience

You will have a masters level qualification or similar practical experience in computer science, bioinformatics or related subjects and at least 2 years of experience developing web interfaces. You must be able to demonstrate this experience through examples of your work. Experience of working in a larger software development team with a shared code base is desirable.

A high-degree of self-motivation and the ability to work independently are required. You will have excellent English communication skills, written and verbal, both to facilitate effective communications with other team members and to communicate with external collaborators and users. You must also have an attention to detail, be capable of delivering to deadlines, be able to delegate and to prioritise tasks.

An applicant must have the following skills:

  • 2+ years of experience programming in JavaScript
  • 2+ years of experience of working in HTML and CSS3
  • 1+ years of working in the React web framework
  • Working knowledge of a scripting language such as Python, Perl, Ruby or PHP
  • Be able to use modern software development tools including Git and GitHub

Any of the following skills would be desirable:

  • Experience of web UI development methodologies including using analytics, logs, speed regression testing and UX design methodologies.
  • Experience of agile development methods
  • The Linux command line and common Linux commands

Knowledge of biology/biochemistry/genomics would be advantageous but not essential.


EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation. The remuneration package comprises a competitive salary, a comprehensive pension scheme and health insurance, educational and other family related benefits where applicable, as well as financial support for relocation and installation.

We have an informal culture, international working environment and excellent professional development opportunities but one of the really amazing things about us is the concentration of technical and scientific expertise – something you probably won’t find anywhere else.

If you’ve ever visited the campus you’ll have experienced first-hand our friendly, collegial and supportive atmosphere, set in the beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside. Our staff also enjoy excellent sports facilities including a gym, a free shuttle bus, an on-site nursery, cafés and restaurant and a library.

Application Instructions

To apply please submit a covering letter and CV, with two referees, through our online system.

Additional Information

Applications are welcome from all nationalities – visa information will be discussed in more depth with applicants selected for interview.

EMBL-EBI is committed to achieving gender balance and strongly encourages applications from women, who are currently under-represented at all levels. Appointment will be based on merit alone.

This position is limited to the project duration specified.

Applications will close at 23:00 GMT on the date listed above.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *