Software Development Manager

We’re looking for an experienced software developer to manage our team of developers. We’re not trying to hire a ‘rock star’, we’re trying to grow a great team – which means finding people who work well together, who share a passion for technology and software development, and whose skills and experience complement one another.

Here’s our wish-list. If you can do most of them, then we’d love to talk to you.

  • Proven experience leading and managing software development teams. You’ve worked with a team of in-house developers to deliver, release and support successful software applications.
  • A solid understanding of what’s needed to build and maintain a happy, high performing team – you apply your coaching and mentoring skills to bring out the best from your team members, help build their skills, ensure they work together cohesively and keep their work on track.
  • Working with your team and other senior colleagues, you ensure your team’s development approach and deliverables contribute and align with overall target architecture for the company.
  • You’ve got proven experience of leading a team that delivers milestones on-time and to the expected quality standards.
  • Experience collaborating with external suppliers. You know how to coordinate and integrate projects that are delivered by multiple teams.
  • You understand what makes software great. From database performance to user experience, you understand how to deliver systems that are great to use, great to maintain and great to extend.
  • You’ve worked on successful, large-scale software systems. You understand the importance of architectural patterns, the value of identifying domain boundaries and introducing abstractions. You’ve worked on systems that support the organisation’s architectural objectives, but you also know there are times when it’s right to diverge from those objects – and you know when to make the call, how to manage that divergence and who to talk to.
  • You’ve worked on agile projects, and you know why rapid iterations matter. You’ve taken part in sprint planning meetings and retrospectives, and you know what you can expect from the scrum master and product owner on a project – and what they can expect from you in return.
  • You know how to keep your projects clean and well-structured, and you know what’s needed to ensure everyone else in your team does too. You know why the arguments to a search function should always be called “needle” and “haystack”, and that there’s times when you need to fire up Visio and draw something properly, and there’s times when a photo of the whiteboard will do just as well.

Skills & Requirements

As this is a management role, you’ll need to be comfortable spending a lot of your time doing management work. To be an effective manager, you need to have experience coaching team members, leading team meetings, doing presentations, recruiting new team members and undertaking performance management processes. In addition, you need to be a skilled communicator who is comfortable with stakeholder management and adjusting your style to the range of different people you’ll be working with.

To ensure that your team perform well, you’ll need to make pragmatic decisions about what the best development approaches will be, taking into account a range of factors, including our company’s strategy, our target architecture and other factors, such as your team’s skill sets and strengths.

Our existing codebase is primarily C# and .NET (although we never really adopted WebForms as a pattern, so you won’t find any instances of OnItemDataBound() or <form runat=”server” /> in our production codebase!) We have systems running ServiceStack, NancyFX, DotNetOpenAuth, EasyNetQ, NServiceBus, WebAPI, ASP.NET MVC, NHibernate, Linq-to-SQL and other open-source .NET frameworks. Our front-end is HTML, CSS and jQuery; there’s some classic ASP code written in server-side JScript, and our back-end data store is Microsoft SQL Server.

Sometimes, we’re building new stuff – we’ve got projects running right now using Redis, ElasticSearch, Aurora, .NET Core, Razor, NancyFX, Dapper and EasyNetQ. Sometimes, we’ll be building new features on top of existing code – in which case familiarity with .NET, NHibernate, SQL and/or classic ASP is obviously an advantage. When it comes to integrating the new stuff with the old stuff, we aim to build clean interfaces and APIs around our legacy systems, to make sure things keep evolving away from monolithic web applications towards a decoupled, scalable, service-oriented architecture.

When it comes to specific tech skills, here’s our long-list, but we don’t expect you to tick every box on it; these are skills we need as a team, and we know we’ll be lucky to find them all in one person.

  • NET code – from DataReaders to dynamics. You know your way around ASP.NET MVC, LINQ, IoC containers, Moq and NUnit. You use tools like Resharper, Reflector, TeamCity, and SQL Compare. You understand testing. Unit tests, integration tests, acceptance tests, A/B tests. You know when they’re useful, and what they can teach you.
  • JavaScript – and not just the good parts. jQuery, prototypes, timeouts and closures. You know your AJAX from your JSON and your with() from your eval(). You’ve ideally had some experience with frameworks like React and Angular, and how to apply software engineering techniques like unit testing in front-end code and single-page applications.
  • The web. We’re not looking for UX design, CSS wizardry or brilliant Photoshop skills – we already have people taking care of that – but we expect you to understand the architectural patterns that exist for running web applications at scale.
  • PowerShell, T-SQL or Python – they’re not your tools of choice, but you know sometimes they’re still the best tool for the job. You’ve experimented with systems like NodeJS and Varnish, and have some ideas about how they might fit into a predominantly Windows-based hosting environment.
  • You’re comfortable with devops, configuration management and managing infrastructure as code. You’ve looked at Chef, Docker, Puppet or Vagrant, or maybe used CloudFormation to set up AWS resources.
  • You understand the value of the tech community – open source projects, blogs, user groups, conferences and social media. Maybe you’re on Stack Overflow, or Github, or Twitter, or you read /r/programming with your morning coffee. Maybe you’ve been to DDD or NDC or BuildStuff, or you’re part of a local user group. You know that there’s people all over the world trying to solve the same problems, and that it’s good for all of us to get together, talk to each other and share our ideas.
  • Fluent written and spoken English is essential. French, Spanish and/or Portuguese language skills would be an advantage.

What do you get from us?

  • The chance to work with a great team of creative and technical people, building awesome products for the film, TV and theatre industry. As the old saying goes, there’s no business like showbusiness…
  • The hardware, software, tools and training that you need to do your best work
  • A competitive salary, great working conditions and a solid benefits package
  • The occasional thrilling moment when you’ll be watching TV, or at the cinema, and go “hey – they used our product to make that!

We’re big fans of continuous improvement, and every sprint includes time allocated to improve our development process, eliminate friction and reduce technical debt. Our code lives on GitHub. We manage our backlogs using Pivotal Tracker, we build our solutions and run our tests using TeamCity. We use Octopus Deploy as our deployment manager, and it’s not uncommon to deploy to production several times in a day. Developers get their choice of hardware, multiple screens, MSDN, Resharper, and we’re happy to pay for productivity tools like NCrunch and SQL Toolbelt if that’s what makes you productive.

This is a full-time job, working Monday-Friday at our offices in Leicester Square, London WC2H 7RJ.


About Spotlight

We’re Spotlight. We’re at and @SpotlightUK, with offices and studios located in the heart of London’s West End. We’ve been the world’s leading casting resource for 90 years. Our software has been used to cast Star Wars, James Bond, Homeland, Game of Thrones, Sherlock, Black Mirror, Downton Abbey, and quite literally thousands of plays, commercials, music videos and shows. If casting directors are looking for leads for their latest Hollywood blockbuster, a chorus line for a West End revival, or mum & dad for an upcoming McDonald’s commercial, they look in Spotlight. Since our first website launched in 1997, Spotlight has delivered innovative applications that have revolutionised the casting industry, and we need to grow our team in order to keep on doing just that.

To find out more about what it’s like to work at Spotlight click here. If you’re interested in our technology, our engineering blog is at and our GitHub repo is

Spotlight is a family-owned company with a solid financial foundation and a healthy appetite for investment.  We have a bright, enthusiastic work force – over half our employees are female, and we’ve got people from every continent except Antarctica. We’ve got a great office in the heart of the West End, surrounded by some of the best restaurants, bars and theatres anywhere in the world.  We have an awesome social committee, really good coffee, team lunches, theatre trips and even an office popcorn machine.

But we also know that work-life balance is important. We close the office over Christmas and New Year, and you get your birthday off – that’s as well as your normal holiday allowance. We start at 10am, giving you time to get the kids off to school; we officially finish at 5:30, and there’s rarely anybody left in the office after 6pm. Some of us work from home on Fridays; some of us work remotely, some of us work flexible hours. If you’re the right person for us, get in touch and we’ll do everything we can to make Spotlight the right company for you.

How to Apply

Send your CV to and tell us, in a few hundred words, who you are, what you’ve been working on recently, and why you’re the right person for the job.

We work with a select group of agencies, and are not looking for new recruitment partners.