Associate Software Engineer

at VillageReach
Location Nairobi, Kenya
Date Posted April 5, 2021
Category IT / Information Technology
Job Type Full-time
Currency KES


VillageReach improves the capacity and reach of health systems in remote, rural low-income countries.Summary

VillageReach invites qualified candidates to apply for the temporary position of Associate Software Engineer. This temporary full-time employment will be for a period of approximately nine months with the potential to extend dependent on funding and mutual good fit. Ideal candidates will have experience developing software using Java, PHP and Javascript and interest in joining the VillageReach team to apply their talents to the mission of VillageReach: to save lives and improve health by increasing access to quality healthcare for the most underserved communities.


Associate Software Engineers work full-time based out of one of the VillageReach offices, although some offices are working remotely from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. Associate Software Engineer is an entry-level position that works closely with other VillageReach Software Engineers and with VillageReach program staff on a variety of activities to support the work of the Digital Solutions team and programs. Associate Software Engineers are a critical part of the team and interact directly with country-office and program staff in sub-Saharan Africa to support VillageReach’s work.

Sample projects currently underway that the Associate Software Engineer may contribute to include: (1) Software feature development and maintenance/support using the open source OpenLMIS medicine supply chain platform in Java and Javascript; (2) Streaming data migration, creating streaming data approaches to conduct a live, incremental data migration between software versions; (3) Product Catalog Management Tool, a PHP open source software project addressing problems around product catalog master data for supply chain interoperability; and the potential to work on other projects that include prototyping, interoperability and creating data dashboards.

The specific project contributions and scope of work of the Associate Software Engineer will be determined by the supervisor based on time availability, experience, and program needs.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following. Other duties, responsibilities, and activities may change or be assigned at any time.

  • Develop great software to support public health systems in low-income countries that ultimately saves lives;
  • Implement new software features and conduct troubleshooting and software maintenance in Java (including Spring Boot), Javascript (including Angular), and PHP (including Symfony) among others;
  • Provide technical support based on user-reported bugs and requests by investigating issues, developing bug fixes and scripts to repair or migrate data, and corresponding in tickets including documenting issue resolution;
  • Produce and/or contribute to documentation and project deliverables including support and maintenance reporting and feature documentation
  • Participate in and share new techniques and introduction of new tools (e.g., new uses of Kafka, Superset and Elasticsearch);
  • Contribute to agile development processes to deliver high-quality software products with automated tests;
  • Engage in the entire software product development cycle from prototyping through design, development, release and maintenance;
  • Contribute to Open Source communities, including contributing code and documentation;
  • Maintain a familiarity with the needs of end users;
  • Collaborate with, learn from, and share experience with a global team spanning multiple continents and comprising varied cultures and backgrounds.


The following competencies reflect what is expected of all VillageReach employees; including examples of how one might demonstrate each of these competencies in one’s role.

  • Personal Motivation and Drive: Is self-directed in one’s approach to work, but asks for help when needed; holds oneself accountable; undertakes self-development activities; seeks to build and master new skills; looks for and takes advantage of opportunities within the organization
  • Collaboration & Effective Communication: Establishes and maintains effective relations with coworkers, partners & stakeholders and external parties; works collaboratively with others to accomplish organizational and team goals and objectives; works actively to resolve conflicts; expresses ideas and thoughts effectively; selects and uses appropriate communication methods and maintains meaningful communication with virtual coworkers and other parties to keep them informed
  • Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion: Takes personal responsibility for and supports others across the organization in creating and sustaining a diverse work environment where individuals are welcomed, valued, respected and supported; personally committed to attaining cultural competency including self-awareness of one’s own attitudes about culture and cross-cultural interactions; exhibits the willingness and ability to engage openly and respectfully around issues of race, colonialism, identity and culture; upholds equity in access to sharing of information, ideas, and opportunities throughout VillageReach
  • Commitment to Excellence: Produces a high output of work, both in terms of quality and quantity; looks for ways to improve and promote quality; monitors work to ensure quality; has a personal commitment to the mission of VillageReach
  • Solution Orientation & Innovation: Focuses on results and desired outcomes and how to best achieve them; gets the job done; sees opportunities for creative problem-solving while staying within the parameters of good practice; sees old problems in new ways and has novel approaches to solving those problems; contributes original and/or resourceful ideas to their area of responsibility; is able to consider and articulate risks and consequences of proposed innovations and factor these into decision-making


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodation may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Supervisory Responsibilities: This position has no supervisory responsibilities.

Education & Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science or a related field or equivalent software engineering experience.
  • Demonstrated experience developing software in Java, PHP and Javascript.
  • Experience and strong interest in global health/global development/ICT4D.

Other Qualifications:

  • Established cultural competency in partnering with racial, cultural and linguistically diverse groups.
  • Demonstrated understanding of challenges with working in rural, underserved and low-income context.
  • Computer Science fundamentals in data structures, algorithm design, problem solving, and complexity analysis.
  • Knowledge of relational databases and SQL such as Postgres, SQL Server, MySQL.
  • Knowledge of web application tools such as Javascript, Angular, NodeJS, HTML and CSS.
  • Experience contributing to an open source software project.
  • Fluency in spoken and written English required.
  • Self-starter with strong communication skills; ability to work independently and ask for help when needed.

Environment and Physical Demands

In cities where VillageReach has an office, VillageReach offices have no private office rooms, employees work in a shared, open environment with task and conference rooms accessible to employees for privacy and meetings. The noise level in the work environment is usually quiet. During the COVID-19 office closure, we expect employees to work remotely from home including video calls. Due to the time zone differences between our Seattle office and our Country Offices and location of other global staff, US based staff are expected to be available for morning meetings starting at 6am PT. Our global HQ and Country office staff are expected to be available for late afternoon/evening meetings up to 6pm local time.

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