Chief Technology Officer

Durham, NC /
Executive – Engineering /
Full Time
The Company

Spoonflower’s mission is to inspire individuals to make, buy and sell unique products built around color and pattern. Our e-commerce website makes it possible for individuals to create, sell, and shop for unique fabrics, wallpaper and home decor, such as bedding and table linens. Many of the designers who use Spoonflower to create products also use it to sell their artwork, making Spoonflower the world’s largest marketplace of surface designs. The community of designers and shoppers who make up Spoonflower is central to what we do. Our goal is to continue to expand the reach of Spoonflower’s services internationally, and, more generally, to expand the opportunities available for individuals to express themselves through color, pattern and personalization. At Spoonflower, creativity, customer-focus, resourcefulness, authenticity, fun and trust are the core values of our workplace. Our team is full of creative, multitalented individuals who embody -- like our customers -- a DIY ethic and an embrace of hard work. We offer team members competitive benefits, support of continuing education, the chance to learn new skills and to move within the company, and a dynamic and flexible company culture.

Spoonflower is seeking to hire a game-changing and proven technology executive who will manage a talented team through an extreme growth phase. Reporting to the CEO, this executive will be responsible for building a global team to help Spoonflower reach its growth and business targets. The CTO will manage and mentor a team consisting of engineering  professionals. The team will be focused on scaling and driving innovation around performance, e-commerce, personalization and innovative new features that support the company’s existing and new business models.  The successful candidate will be passionate about e-commerce and building a shopping platform that drives top line revenue growth, conversion, loyalty and overall customer satisfaction. They must build a global team (between developers in Berlin and Durham, NC) that can release new businesses for Spoonflower quickly and convert Spoonflower into a platform that can expand into areas that we may not be in today.

Education and Position Requirements

    • Undergraduate degree in a STEM field; MBA or other graduate degree is highly desirable
    • Minimum of 15 years of progressive technology leadership experience with a collaborative management style and significant executive presence
    • Previous experience as a CTO, within the e-commerce space, preferably in a global development environment
    • Experience with site search technologies (SOLR or Elasticsearch)
    • Experience deploying applications and managing the operations of such systems with an emphasis on client service and client satisfaction
    • Experience operating a mission-critical technology environment while maintaining a culture of innovation, entrepreneurship and productivity
    • Fluent in hands-on management of agile, iterative development spanning specification, prototyping, architecture, QA, operations and support
    • Fluent in determining KPIs that allows agile teams to iterate to meet measurable goals
    • Familiar with using web analytics from A/B testing in order to optimize solutions to drive revenue
    • Familiar with the technology and business models of e-commerce, consumer sites, and social networking
    • Track record of high quality, innovative products that delight users and achieve business results; passionate for high impact user experiences
    • Strong, visionary leader and strategic business partner with a passion for technology and customer service
    • Excellent leadership, communication and presentation skills, both written and oral
    • Strong people management skills with proven success in motivating, mentoring and creating an environment where the best talent wants to be; experience hiring and scaling technology teams
    • Experience with Cloud providers

Preferred Qualities & Characteristics

    • Passionate, organized, smart, engaging, driven and technically savvy.
    • Able to establish mutual respect and a collaborative working relationship with their peers and team.
    • Must be able to implement strong process in the engineering organization, specifically around prioritization, quality assurance, project management, and development.
    • Must be personally committed to Spoonflower, its customers and drive the organization through technical growth.
    • Ability to set a very high bar and stretch goals, clearly communicate those goals and then infuse and inspire the team with a sense of purpose and urgency in attainment of those goals.
    • Flexible, able to adjust and change direction as the business environment and technology universe evolves and changes.
    • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills with all kinds of people at all levels inside and outside the organization.
    • Ability to work through conflict, gain trust and persuasively influence outcomes.
    • Ability to address tactical issues in the short-term while maintaining strategic vision for the long-term.
    • Seen as a company evangelist and leader in the tech industry.
    • Embodies Spoonflower core values and leads by example.


    • Responsible for leading all aspects of Spoonflower’s digital (e-commerce) engineering team.  The team is comprised of 30 professionals across front-end, back-end engineering, infrastructure, network ops and site operations on a global basis.
    • This executive should have deep experience introducing best practices and processes around quality assurance, project management and engineering development.
    • Responsible for providing technical vision and direction to ensure the organization is aligned with the strategy of the company, and that the group is capable of constant iteration and testing. The goal is to ensure that technical investment decisions are made for site architecture and scalability as well as to enable a front-end product that will attract traffic and spark conversion and loyalty. 
    • The ideal candidate will have proven leadership and technology general management experience with both a product focused team as well as with an executive team, and have previously built robust, scalable platforms that allow for a team to rapidly innovate.
    • This executive should be well versed and have tenured experience to provide execution and continue to foster the growth of a highly scalable and mission critical environment.
    • The CTO should be well versed in the following areas: web application design and engineering, mobile, native cloud and server-less architecture, CI/CD pipeline and tools, application performance monitoring, alerting and operational support systems.
    • The current technology environment is hosted in AWS. 
    • The CTO will be responsible for bringing vision, energy, passion, commitment and high quality of management to this fast-paced environment. 
    • This will require strong leadership capabilities, as well as a roll-up-your sleeves / hands on mentality.
    • The person in this role will be given the latitude to build and influence culture.
    • Must be able to collaborate with all members of the executive team to translate the business priorities of the company into a technical agenda and be an excellent communicator between the business and the tech team. 
    • This role includes challenging opportunities for development of complex customer facing search algorithms to drive increased personalization and, as a result, consumer purchases.  
    • Responsible for driving increased product sales through the digital channel and increasing product velocity.

If you're interested in joining Spoonflower, please send a cover letter, telling us what inspires you about Spoonflower and why you think you are perfect for our team. We are as interested in knowing who you are as we are in knowing what you can do. Applications without a cover letter will not be considered.

Include in your letter a URL for any/all your online material that you would like to share with us, including resume, blog, or portfolio of work. 

We look forward to hearing from you!

To all agencies: Please, no phone calls or emails to any employee of Spoonflower, Inc. about this job posting. All resumes submitted by search firms/employment agencies to any employee at Spoonflower, Inc. via-email, the internet or in any form and/or method will be deemed the sole property of Spoonflower, Inc. unless such search firms/employment agencies were engaged by Spoonflower, Inc. for this requisition and a valid agreement with Spoonflower, Inc. is in place. In the event a candidate who was submitted outside of the Spoonflower, Inc. agency engagement process is hired, no fee or payment of any kind will be paid.

To qualify for employment at Spoonflower, Inc., applicants must be legally authorized to work in the United States and should not require, now or in the future, sponsorship for employment visa status. Spoonflower is committed to a policy of Equal Employment Opportunity. All qualified applicants are considered for employment without regard to race, color, religion, creed, national origin or ancestry, sex, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, age, physical or mental disability, protected veteran or military status, genetic information, or any legally recognized protected basis under federal, state or local laws, regulation or ordinances.