Senior Researcher: Website Performance
Are you excited about working for a technology company that is securing the web? Are you looking for full-time, flexible hours* working remotely from anywhere in the United States? If so, this may be your dream job!
*Required core hours of 10am - 1pm Pacific Time
A successful candidate in this role will create original, ground-breaking website performance research, publishing those insights in a format that is easily understandable by our audience. This role will be approximately half research and half technical writing.
Defiant will provide tools like FastOrSlow.com which has a range of unpublished back-end capabilities that our researchers can use, along with an audience of over 4 million website owners who are interested in findings that uncover industry-leading insights on website performance. We expect you to publish a steady cadence of defendable research once every two weeks on average.
You will be working closely with the Defiant engineering team along with our marketing team. We will provide all the support you need in the form of tech resources, editing, collaboration and brainstorming. The Defiant team is comfortable attempting ambitious experiments, failing and pursuing excellence until we succeed. We understand that doing this kind of work means taking creative risks. We will support you every step of the way.
This job is a mix of robust technical ability, the ability to come up with hypotheses, test them and publish any resulting research that is relevant to the website hosting and SEO community. Programming ability is one of the job requirements because you will need to pre-process lists, be able to manually script web crawlers and automate other tasks. We also require strong writing skills that can make a technical subject as accessible as possible.
The specific skills we require for this position are:
- Programming ability in PHP, Python or another widely used language suitable for interacting with web servers and performing small and large scale data processing.
- Deep understanding of data transfer from web server to client at all layers of the OSI.
- Strong grasp of client-side website performance as it relates to in-browser DOM rendering and JS execution.
- Ability to use standard website performance benchmarking tools including browser-based and online.
- A deep understanding of performance benchmarking measurements at every stage of website page load from initial DNS lookup all the way to CPU idle in the browser and every step in between.
- Strong expository writing skills including the ability to explain technical findings and research to web developers, designers, and WordPress users, including but not limited to a lay audience. You need to take the audience from the unknown to the known in an easy to understand logical progression, without making cognitive leaps or assumptions.
- Ability to formulate hypotheses, test those hypotheses using tools and data, and make fast decisions to discard or pursue based on findings. Where there is clearly a story to tell, you will take the research to its conclusion and then draft your findings in a well written first draft blog post which our team will assist with editing and graphic support.
- Ability to generate a regular cadence of published research on a roughly two week schedule. Some weeks will be busy, others will be quiet. Focus on high quality, newsworthy, industry defining research is of highest priority.
- Your writing will include comment on emerging website performance research and current events. You’ll be sharing these on our blog and adding your own insights and inputs.
- Your research will need to be defendable by you as you politely interact with our audience on the blog and on social media.
- Programming ability in PHP, Python or comparable language is strongly preferred.
- Knowledge of networking is also a strong advantage.
- Knowledge of databases like MySQL or PostgreSQL is also helpful.
- Experience developing for the LAMP stack or similar is preferred.
All positions require a trial period of approximately 2-3 weeks with a minimum commitment of 10 hours per week. You will be paid for this short-term contract, and it will be used to evaluate whether both parties want to pursue an ongoing, regular employment relationship.
All offers of employment are contingent on successful completion of a background check. The results of the background check are considered as they relate to the position and do not automatically disqualify someone from a offer of employment with the company.
- Full time telecommuting and flexible working hours, with a company that has been 100% remote for over 8 years.
- 100% employee premium and 50% of dependent premium paid by company for premier- level medical, dental, and vision insurance.
- 21 days PTO per year to start.
- 12 paid company holidays including the week from December 25 to January 1.
- 401(k) with a 4% Safe Harbor company match that is 100% vested immediately.
- Latest in laptop and workstation technology.
- Wellness reimbursement program for health and fitness purchases.
- Mobile phone and internet reimbursement up to $100 per month.
- Monthly beverage reimbursement for coffee, tea, water, etc.
- Paid training and study time for work-related training and certifications.
- College tuition reimbursement.
Diversity at Defiant
We value diversity and do not discriminate based on race, color, religion or creed, national origin or ancestry, sex, age, physical or mental disability, military or veteran status, gender identity or expression, marital status, sexual orientation, political ideology, economic status, parental status, or any other non-performance-related status.
Apply for this position