Cognician: Senior Front-End Developer

Cognician is looking for a Senior Front-End Developer in Cape Town, South Africa, starting immediately.

About us

Cognician is a mature product start-up in the corporate learning space. February 2017 marks the beginning of our 7th year, and April 2017 our 5th year with the Clojure stack.

Our team is composed of a variety of purpose-driven, friendly, smart, skilled, and overall ‘good-weird’ people, all focused on solving the big problems of digital coaching in the workplace, each according to their own particular skills and strengths. We know that we’ve got a lot of work to do here. We’re eager to do it, and enjoy working together as we do.

You can get to know a little about each of us on our team page.

Although we have a physical office in Cape Town, we’re organised as remote-first and asynchronous, since that’s how we started! Our entire organisation is in the cloud.

You can learn quite a bit about our tech stack and culture in a fairly short space of time on episode 27 and episode 48 of the ZADevChat podcast, where our CTO, Robert Stuttaford, appeared as a guest.

About you

  • You’re proactive. You understand the value of getting in front of potential problems, and work to do so.
  • You’re organised. You care how your work is done just as much as what work you’re doing.
  • You’re meticulous. The work you produce is fit-to-purpose, consistent, and complete.
  • You’re responsible. You own the problem, not just the solution.
  • You’re empathic. You know that this is all about people first.
  • You’re a communicator. You understand that effective work is about shared understanding, and you strive to achieve that.
  • You ask lots of questions.
  • You prefer a ‘learning mindset’, but you can clearly motivate and defend your ‘fixed mindsets’.
  • You’re calm and focused under pressure.
  • You optimise for your intrinsic motivators — masteryautonomy, and purpose.
  • You understand and value the difference between a goal and a strategy.
  • You’re a natural teacher and coach.
  • You’re conscious of the passage of time, and what that means for a company and a team.

Dev focus

  • You know or want to learn Clojure and ClojureScript and/or Datomic — and apply that learning from day one.
  • You have experience using browser technologies to create web apps that are easy to use, beautiful to look at and engage with the user.

Technologies that we use

Experience in these will be beneficial, but are not a prerequisite. We’re happy for you to pick up these skills if you are interested:

  • Clojure and ClojureScript for server- and client-side code
  • SCSS for CSS preprocessing
  • Datomicdatalog and datascript for data management
  • Git and GitHub for version control

Things you’ll do

Front-end work

Implement web pages from designs and mockups:

  • Interpret and convert mock-ups and designs into responsive web pages
  • Implement using a variety of Closure and ClojureScript tools

Cross-browser responsive design:

  • Cross-browser compatible CSS
  • Responsive design for all browser viewport sizes
  • Knowledge of special browser features and bugs

Update and fix existing pages:

  • Fix or update any reported issues on existing pages
  • Keep the rest of the team informed with progress updates

Deploy new features or changes to the production or test servers:

  • Code review
  • Cross-browser testing
  • Use git and GitHub to manage code

Team management

You will need to be comfortable working in a team, with other developers and designers to accomplish tasks and goals. This will involve, amongst others:

  • Managing tasks and priorities among team members
  • Making sure that other team members are unimpeded
  • Ensuring that tasks are completed in a timely manner
  • Tracking tasks and progress using Asana, keeping your task status updated and regularly reporting progress to the rest of the team


Although we do have remote engineers, this is a position at our office in Cape Town, South Africa. We want you in the mix with us at least part of every week — to soak up our culture and to coach other tech folks on your discipline and practice, so that we can properly own this important responsibility together.

Given what we understand about Cognician’s future, we believe that a physical presence for this role is vital to building long-term strength in our team, our product, and our company.


If all of this appeals to you, you can reach Robert Stuttaford (Cognician’s CTO) via:

We’re happy to answer any initial questions you may have on any of these channels, but if you’d like to apply, we’d love for you to share a written motivation and your work history, via email before we engage in any sort of discussion.

If, for whatever reason, you decided to pass on this, but you know someone who may be interested, please share this post with them!