• Chief Architect

    Job Location US-CA-Pleasanton
    Position Type
  • About Blackhawk Network:

    Blackhawk Network Holdings, Inc. is a global financial technology company and a leader in connecting brands and people through branded value solutions. Blackhawk platforms and solutions enable the management of stored value products, promotions and rewards programs in retail, ecommerce, financial services and mobile wallets. Blackhawk’s Hawk Commerce division offers technology solutions to businesses and direct to consumers. The Hawk Incentives division offers enterprise, SMB and reseller partners an array of platforms and branded value products to incent and reward consumers, employees and sales channels. Headquartered in Pleasanton, Calif., Blackhawk operates in 26 countries. For more information, please visit blackhawknetwork.com, cashstar.comhawkcommerce.comhawkincentives.com or our product websites GiftCards.comgiftcardmall.comGiftCardLab.com and OmniCard.com.


    Interested in driving technology for the next generation of systems for the leader in branded-value?  At Blackhawk we are creating an Omnicommerce experience for consumers and our partners who represent the largest brands in the world. Our ideal candidate has significant experience in creating successful architectures, ideally, in the payments market, has passion for the latest technology trends, understands not only how technology works but why, can independently design new systems and lead teams into unchartered territories.  He or she must always keep the focus on the customer, thrive in cross-functional collaborative environments, and be creative in all aspects of the position.


    • Develop technology strategies and architecture that will propel Blackhawk to become the worldwide branded value leader.  Must be able to champion ideas and successfully advocate for them at all levels of the organization.
      • Understands the organizational direction, goals and industry competitive environment to determine how architecture can add value to the organization and business.
    • Drive the successful execution of Blackhawk’s mission by working with product management and engineering to deliver world-class architectures and technology solutions for all product lines.  Those architectures and implementation strategies must consider security, resiliency, scalability, and performance of systems, while remaining within budget.
    • Leverage in-depth knowledge of tech industry best practices, technologies, architectures and emerging technologies to develop and maintain an aspirational architectural road map for the enterprise.
    • Assist in technology selection by confirming that the choices are viable by understanding the alternatives and factors that distinguish them and what technical issues are key to the project’s success.
      • Highlight short-term trade-offs vs long-term commitments and where those are worth implementing or not. Ensure that the solutions are scalable (technology), efficient (process), effective (cost), and supportable
      • Make expert recommendations and decisions clearly linked to the organization's strategy and financial goals.
    • Partner closely with product management to gain clear understanding of business requirements to align with architecture.  Drive to resolution enterprise technical problems through collaboration with other technical leaders. The ability to make crisp technology decisions in a dynamic environment is critical.
    • Evangelize for new or different technologies, processes, or solutions based on risk/ benefit analysis. Gain organizational commitment for enterprise level architecture and infrastructure initiatives. Lead the organization through change.  Must be comfortable prototyping and getting hands dirty.
    • Establish a vision that inspires the continuous improvement of our software development process to create more reliable and robust solutions by leveraging automation.
    • Identify architectural risks and propose alternatives and solutions.
    • Evaluate potential technology acquisitions for technical soundness and ability to integrate into our architectural structure. Create plan for end-to-end systems integration of technology acquisitions.
    • Partners with other external technology leaders in sales situations and other forums.
    • Share in-depth knowledge of public technology frameworks, cloud services, open stack & payments tech eco-system and the organization's technologies and architectures across the engineering and product teams to support scalability, skills transfer and organizational change management across the enterprise and architecture community.
    • Develop and maintain current and planned state architectural blueprints, sharing vision behind architectural decisions, plans, goals and strategies and acting as the focal point for enterprise architecture and IT standards.
    • Provide architectural direction to other Enterprise Architects, Infrastructure Leads and Engineering Leads.
    • Develop architectural metrics and reports for the executive team, business and Tech management.
    • Oversee the design and implementation of enterprise data and metadata structures.
    • Create a plan to integrate business systems and workflows in support of business strategy.
    • Develop and enforce best practices for master data management and integration.
    • Responsible for Enterprise Architecture Governance:
      • Develop and communicate enterprise technology standards and policies.
      • Review new and existing program/project architecture for compliance with standards, policies and architectural plans.
      • Review IT procurement plans for compliance with IT standards and architectural plans.
      • Document exceptions to architectural standards.
      • Ensure that product documentation captures significant architectural decisions.
      • Ensure that architectural governance is a fair, consistent and transparent process.


    • Master’s Degree in computer science, engineering, or related discipline. PhD a plus.
      • Technology leader with 15+ years of full stack software development experience including 5+ years of application architecture experience with deep technology expertise in architecture design of large scale platforms and applications with simple solutions. Proven ability to balance business demands and fulfillment in terms of standardization, reducing risk and increasing flexibility.
    • Successful track record of leading architecture work for large scale projects that represent broad strategic initiatives meeting quantifiable business objectives and resulting in tangible impact for the organization. Demonstrated expertise in leveraging agile and other development
    • Payment industry experience highly desirable
    • Proven ability to relate and adapt vision and strategy to the external environment that affects the organization in terms of economic climate, customer market demand, regulation and other legalities, geography, culture, technology.
      • Able to develop, present and explain the value and vision of proposed architectures and solutions to a wide range of audience. Proven ability to upwardly influence the strategic direction of business solutions.
    • Experience in modern cloud solution architecture, design, and development preferred
    • Experience leading teams of technical architects, serving as a positive role model for the team through coaching and mentoring
    • Proven experience working with business stakeholders to translate product vision into technical roadmaps
    • Proven experience architecting big data processing on complex distributed computing platforms
    • In-depth knowledge of various datastores and proper application based on use case
    • Expertise in multiple languages including Java, Python, Javascript
    • Experience with cloud infrastructure cost optimization
    • Exposure to UX/UI best practices and their application in the development cycle
    • Deep familiarity with Agile Scrum methodology
    • Experience working with co-located, multi-disciplinary teams
    • Big thinker that is tenacious about continuous learning with an innovation mindset
    • A great communicator with outstanding demonstration and presentation skills,
      • Ability to work in environment of competing and alternating priorities with constant focus on delivery.
    • Must have demonstrable examples of large-scale distributed systems where he or she was the primary technical leader for the solution.  Daily transaction volumes should reach the millions to be considered large-scale.
    • Must possess the technical knowledge to quickly earn the respect of the engineering team.  You have to go deep with the developers.  Understanding the code from how it is built to how it is tested.  No “paper architects” need apply. Should be a role model for developers.
    • The best technologists have the ability to learn from their experience and apply by leveraging new technologies.  Does block-chain help or hurt Blackhawk?  How should we be leveraging node.js (we are mostly a Java shop)?  Understand new technologies, is not enough, but showing how to leverage them for Blackhawk’s business success is essential.
    • Must be able to help us continue moving to the cloud.  Lifting an existing web site and running in AWS doesn’t count.  Need to have created cloud native solutions in AWS that effectively auto-scale up and down.  Lambda experience a plus.
    • Insightful, pragmatic, and able to negotiate between conflicting forces. May act as the bridge between developers, managers and other communities.  You’ll need to be prepared spend time translating and mediating between them.
    • The architectures he or she creates must meet the users’ needs, but not necessarily every wish and constraint. The architect should help to identify and resolve conflicting requirements, helping to say “No”, or “What do you really need?” if the requirements clash.
    • Must know the difference between domain modeling and database modeling and have developers using APIs using a domain model you created.




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