VP/Head of Software (Remote)

Oakland, CA /
Software & Data Science /

Yard Stick is looking for a VP or Head of Software to help us fight climate change with soil. This role will lead our entire software team and will serve as the third member of the executive team, reporting to then CEO. This is a dream job for an entrepreneurial, creative, high-EQ software expert who wants to apply their expertise in a rapidly-growing startup with strong fundamentals and literal planetary-scale impact. 

We’d like to hire this person immediately.

About Yard Stick PBC

Yard Stick is a remote-first, seed-stage company on a mission to reverse climate change with soil carbon removal - a gigaton/year solution currently bottlenecked by high cost of measurement. By reducing the cost of soil carbon measurement by 90%+, Yard Stick will simultaneously improve ecosystem health, increase farmer income, and combat climate change. 

We were awarded a $3.6M grant from the DOE ARPA-E Smartfarm program in Fall 2020, and we’ve also raised money from top climate VCs, including Breakthrough Energy Ventures (Bill Gates' climate fund), Lowercarbon Capital (Chris and Crystal Sacca's climate fund), and others. For more background, check out some coverage in TechCrunch or Treehugger.

We’ve got a track record of great work experiences for folks with young families and other constraints and value teammates’ lives outside work. We’re also a PBC, or public benefit corporation, which is an alternative corporate structure which protects our ability to prioritize climate impact over profits if the two are in conflict.

About The Role

This role will lead Yard Stick’s software team (currently 4 people). As well, alongside the company’s co-founding CEO and Chief Engineer, they will serve as the third member of the company’s executive team.

Yard Stick’s offerings combine disparate disciplines including highly technical hardware, a web app which manages carbon measurement and GIS data, and ML pipelines which connect the two. We need a collaborative software leader who can work cross-disciplinarily to maximize the pace of Yard Stick’s R&D and therefore climate impact. We’re looking for someone who is happy to do IC work themselves on occasion but primarily aspires to a managerial career trajectory.

Our current tools and languages include web apps on Ruby on Rails, data pipelines in Python on the Dagster platform, a mobile app built with Fulcrum, and infrastructure in AWS, Heroku, and others.

Qualifications - Must Have

    • Experience leading software teams from concept to launch. You have led teams of at least 6 people to imagine, build, ship, and refine software offerings with an appropriately MVP worldview. 
    • Experience guiding collaborative problem-solving between software and other critical-path teams. At Yard Stick, you'll ensure a highly robust “handshake” between hardware and software. You are an excellent cross-disciplinary teammate.
    • Exceptional written and asynchronous communication skills. Yard Stick is a remote-first company across multiple time-zones. You are a deft written communicator, esp cross-disciplinarily.
    • Familiarity with machine learning and related data science infrastructure. Our current team includes exceptional ML talent, but this person needs a thought partner and collaborator.
    • Strong ability to understand the customer and business significance of software offerings. You’re sensitive to customer (and other stakeholder) goals sufficiently to inform how, why, and when we build something, and you know how what you build can make money.
    • Top-decile personal independence and entrepreneurial autonomy. 
    • Innate enthusiasm for the challenge and opportunity of climate change.
    • Existing permanent authorization to work in the United States.

Qualifications - Nice To Have

    • Experience with maps, geospatial statistics and math, or other location-based technologies.
    • Prior work experience in climate or awareness of current issues in carbon markets.

Compensation and Other Details

    • Market salary and equity commensurate with expertise. Directionally, we expect a salary of ~$180-220k and equity of ~1-4%. 
    • We offer health, dental, and vision insurance, and we pay ~80% of premiums. 
    • We provide unlimited PTO, unlimited sick leave, and 6- or 4-week caregiver leave.
    • Role can be based anywhere in continental US time zones.
Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Yard Stick’s impact goals go well beyond climate science (although our #1 core value is Climate Impact). Why? Our company operates primarily in the US agricultural sector, which is predicated on centuries of mass land theft and disenfranchisement of Native and Black people. This harm continues today. If we’re going to work in this sector, we need to actively work to make it better.

Consistent with our core value of “Pursue Justice,” we speak up about these issues, and we support emerging solutions and relevant policy efforts such as H.R.40 and S.300. We also publicly highlight the risk of further racial discrimination in emerging agricultural legislation like the Growing Climate Solutions Act.

Regarding hiring and culture, we work to create a work environment where everyone feels confident sharing their ideas, problem-solving happens openly and collaboratively, and mistake-making is welcomed. We also standardize our interview process and questions to reduce “likeability” bias, benchmark salaries against industry databases to reduce negotiation, and utilize tools like the Gender Decoder (this one is neutral-coded, fwiw). Climate change is arguably the most complex challenge ever faced by humanity - we need all of humanity activated to fight back, and that motivates us to build a diverse team.