Forward Action Company Profile

Forward Action: Head of Web Development

Forward Action
This job is 13 months old and is probably not available anymore.

Job Description

Headquarters: London, UK URL:

Summary Forward Action is looking for a Head of Web Development to join our friendly, fast-moving team.   As the leader of our development team, you’ll build our strategies, ideas and designs into tools that deliver real-world impact for our progressive clients. As well as managing two developers and a group of freelancers, you’ll take ownership of our technical work right from project conception through to delivery. You’ll map out technical solutions to new briefs, and ensure we consistently deliver high quality development work that helps our clients hit their campaign goals.  If you have a solid development background, great communication skills and are passionate about making the world a better place, this job is for you. This is a permanent role, with the freedom to work both in our London office and remotely anywhere in the UK. You can work either four or five days per week. Applications close Sunday 3 November 2019. Who we are Forward Action is a full service digital agency for progressive causes. We come up with ideas for campaigns that get results, then do the work to create them. We have been in the engine room of some of the most successful election and charity digital campaigns of the last few years, helping our clients add millions of new supporters to their email lists, raise more money online (from more donors) and create campaigns that have led to real-world change. Our clients are some of the most exciting and impactful organisations in campaigning, including Greenpeace, Cancer Research UK, Amnesty International, WaterAid, The Labour Party and SumOfUs. Our development team consists of two developers and a group of freelancers. We mostly deliver front-end development solutions for our clients that work at scale (our work is seen by millions of people each year) and help them hit their campaigning goals. We also do some backend work to integrate our solutions with our clients’ CRMs and occasionally do other larger pieces of backend work. What you’ll do as part of our team

  • Manage the development aspects of projects, including:
  • Managing developers working on the projects
  • Making sure developers have assets and support
  • Quality assuring builds
  • Liasing with the clients via email, Trello and video calls throughout the entire process
  • Giving feedback on designs and wireframes from a development-feasibility perspective
  • Contributing to and sometimes leading project evaluation calls with clients
  • Come up with technical strategies, specifications and quotes in response to briefs from clients
  • Ensure we have the right development skills and capacity to deliver for our clients. That will include:
  • Building and maintaining relationships with freelancers
  • Overseeing training of the development team to make sure we're making the most of modern frameworks and our clients’ technology stacks
  • Lead on how we innovate technically to improve results for our clients
  • Help make our project-delivery processes more efficient and effective by managing the development of innovative internal tools
  • Ensure our development processes and standards are appropriate to the work we’re doing
  • Quality assure development work, leading on making sure the quality of our development work is consistently high
  • Ensure our development work complies with our own data and security requirements and those of our clients
  • Line manage two members of our development team
  • Help us communicate about our development work as part of our marketing

Benefits and location Pro Rata Salary: £50,184 if you live inside London, £44,807 (plus £3,000 travel expense allowance) if you live outside London. Contract Term: This is a permanent contract. The role can be either full time or four days a week. Location: In our Hoxton office, with the option to work remotely. Ensuring our team is open to people who live outside London and enabling staff to work flexibly are important values to us, so you’ll have the freedom to work from home regularly. Most of our meetings are held via video conferencing, but you will occasionally need to attend meetings with clients in London - once every two-to-four weeks on average. Holiday: 25 days/year (pro rata), plus bank holidays and the week between Christmas and New Year. Maternity and Paternity/Long-term partner parental leave: Maternity leave - 12 weeks full pay, 14 weeks 50% pay. Paternity/Long-term partner parental leave: 6 weeks full pay. Why work at Forward Action? Our values are critical to us: we will only work with causes that make the world a better place. You will get to work with some of the most inspiring and impactful organisations in the sector, and spend your days helping win progress on everything from climate change to clean water. You will be working at the cutting edge of digital campaigning. We recognise that what we do can always be tested and improved, so we constantly pursue innovation. We are an agile, fast-moving team, and you will have the opportunity to rapidly develop and expand your skills and experience. We are an equal opportunity employer and are committed to giving equal employment opportunities to everyone who applies for this role. Our team is open, inclusive, friendly, respectful and kind. Abilities and experience you’ll need to have

  • We think you'll probably have 4+ years of experience as a developer building user-focused products, but we're more interested in the quality of your experience than exact timing.
  • Excellent frontend development experience using a modern JavaScript framework such as Vue.js or React.
  • Backend development experience with modern PHP and/or Node.js and SQL databases
  • Knowledge of WordPress development
  • The ability to communicate clearly, both verbally and in writing
  • Experience managing development projects
  • Experience working out a technical solution for a brief
  • The ability to balance engineering excellence with tight budgets and timelines
  • Comfortable working in a fast-paced environment
  • Excellent organisation and attention-to-detail
  • Dedication to helping build a fairer, more progressive society
  • Fluency in spoken and written English

We’re also looking for a quick learner. We don’t expect you to know or have done everything when you start - instead, we’ll be looking for you to pick up new skills and knowledge quickly, then run with them. Abilities and experience that are nice to have We know it’s not possible for any applicants to have all these skills - it’s likely you’ll be able to bring 3-5 of the following to our team:

  • Experience working in the charity sector
  • Experience working as a freelancer and/or at an agency
  • Experience managing at least one person
  • Experience working with email marketing tools like Mailchimp
  • Experience working with CRMs that are popular in the charity sector, such as Engaging Networks or Blue State Digital tools
  • A solid understanding of online user experience (e.g. how to lay out a web page to improve conversion rates)
  • Experience working with a variety of software development approaches (Agile, Waterfall etc)
  • Experience working with a variety of software development project management tools
  • An understanding of WCAG criteria and experience building accessible web applications
  • Experience with cloud hosting services: Google Cloud, Netlify, Heroku

How to apply To apply for this job, please complete the form here: To ensure our hiring process is as fair as possible, we run an anonymised application procedure. So please remove your name and contact information from your CV before uploading it, and only enter these details in the online form.  To apply, you will need to include:

  • your CV (with name and contact details removed)
  • up to 250 words explaining how you’re suited to the role and why you want this job
  • links to three examples of your front-end development work. If possible, please provide these in a format that doesn’t include your name.
  • up to 200 words describing the most difficult technical challenge you’ve faced on a project and how you resolved it

Applications close on Sunday 3 November. Shortlisted candidates will be asked to complete a written online task from home - this can be any time that works for you between Friday 8 November and Monday 11 November. Selected candidates will then be invited to attend an interview (either in person in London or via a video call) on Tuesday 19 November. Questions?  If you’re unclear about anything to do with the role, you can contact our team on [email protected] 

To apply: