FreshBooks, a local web startup for invoicing, is looking for an Agile Web Development Manager:
It’s a local startup. Their product (a slick, yet simple invoicing system) is easy to use, seems to have built up a community, and has a lot of potential to expand. There’s a lot of promise in all of that. They seem to use agile methods to aim for high-quality, frequently-shipped software in Ruby on Rails. By aiming to do more with less, it feels like the kind of company that will pay attention to principles like YAGNI, and ‘the simplest solution that will work’ rather than building up a large and unwieldy team to develop features that nobody really wants.
The role seems to be a rolled-up combination of agile coach, product manager and development manager. In a large organization, I’m not sure I’d agree that this is a perfect combination, as there may be some conflicts of interest, but for a startup, it’s probably a necessary kind of role-compression. As long as they find the right candidate, it should be doable. It is, at least, senior, and a chance to shape a startup development team.
Many people would probably consider their location out-of-the-way. It’s basically at Glencairn and Dufferin. While this isn’t horrifically far off the subway line, it’s pretty far Northwest for people in downtown or midtown, and even those in uptown locations that aren’t easily on the University/Spadina subway line might be less than enthused. I don’t know the area, so I can’t speak to it. If you’re near the University/Spadina line, particularly north of Bloor, or north of Glencairn, even, it might even be a good location.
They don’t talk about the work much — so unless you’ve used FreshBooks before, you may have no idea what the work actually is. Even having used their software, the posting doesn’t make it clear that you’re going to be working on their invoicing product.
There’s no talk of compensation, and although they’re four years old, they still seem to feel as if they’re in startup mode, so it’s not clear that compensation will be a strong point. Worth probing further.
Your mileage may vary on the location; if you’re northwest yourself, this might appeal. Some people aren’t looking for a startup atmosphere, although I prefer that atmosphere myself.
Frankly, if you can stomach the location and you’d like to be managing an agile team in Ruby, this sounds pretty good. This is tempting to me, and I really don’t like their location. I’m assuming someone in the Northwest will be all over this. Do find out about compensation before you get too deep, and feel free to report back for the rest of us.