Trapeze: Director of Application Development

Trapeze is looking for a Director of Application Development:

Trapeze seeks a strong technical manager with experience leading and developing teams of programmers, making important technical choices, and defining internal processes and procedures.

  • Defining a standardized approach to define technical solutions and technical architectures for our client projects.
  • Collaborating with client facing teams and internal developers to determine the best technical solutions to challenges.
  • Defining the internal processes and methodologies of the development team.
  • Managing the development of re-usable code libraries and tools.
  • Acting as the lead technical person on the most demanding client projects
  • Making decisions on which technologies Trapeze invests in training and developing our staff in.
  • Developing the skill sets and capabilities of all of Trapeze developers, especially growing a team of highly capable lead developers under you.

Trapeze, in true agency fashion, defines themselves through their clients:

Toronto-based Trapeze ( is a leading digital agency that works with a select group of exciting world-renowned clients, including Bonefish Grill, CBS Television, CBC, Cineplex, Disney, Jaguar, LandRover, Natrel, Sobeys and many others.

The Good
They’ve done a reasonable job of defining the role, I think.  There’s not much about the work, but that’s almost entirely defined by the whims of Trapeze’s clients.  It’s a senior role for an agency, you may have a chance of making an impact.  There are opportunities to leverage today’s productive technology environments to do really impressive things really inexpensively if you can get the right technology mix in place, which could result in good margins and fun development.  Whether or not you can make that happen with Trapeze and their clients is another question.

The Bad
Although they’re advertising for the Director of Application Development, they make the Director of Trapeze Labs job sound more interesting.  Without knowing what comprehensive and competitive mean, it’s hard to know what they pay, but probably not as much as you’d think.  What’s the process?  Why would you want to work at Trapeze?  What’s the size and nature of the team?  What kind of projects will you be working on?  These are the kinds of questions you’ll have to ask in person.

The location’s a little off the beaten path – Esplanade and Sherbourne.  Good if you’re commuting from the east end or comin’ down the DVP, not so good if you’re coming from the west end or via TTC from anything but the east.  It’s a good place to shop for furniture, and there’s a few interesting places around, but it’s not a hot-bed of cuisine.  Then again, it’s not too far from the Distillery district.

I can’t speak for Trapeze in particular, but I’ve worked for a few agencies, and I’d say that you need to be aware of a few things.  You’ll often be moving on to ‘the next project’.  You might find yourself doing the same kinds of small projects repeatedly, which means that you may have the opportunity to really refine the art of putting together simple applications that seem bigger than they are rapidly, but you’re less likely to learn the art of shepherding a complex application through a multi-year development process or choosing the technology stack.

The technology environment will be dictated at least in part by your clients and their hosting choices.  LAMP/PHP and ASP have tend to rule the roost with the smaller hosters.  It can be a very ‘us and them’ experience or a very collaborative one — depends, often, on the client.  Some clients understand what they can get for their dollar, other clients want you to build Amazon and E-Bay for a few beers.  Not everyone enjoys this overall atmosphere.

In Summary
It’s a senior role at a known Toronto agency.  If you’ve got polish on your PHP and you’re up for the agency environment, this could be your role.


One Response to Trapeze: Director of Application Development

  1. […] far as I know, they’re still looking for a Director of Application Development as well, so if the company and work sounds interesting but you’re looking for a more senior […]

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