Senior Systems Engineer

Sunnyvale, CA

Position Description

About Blue River

We’re Blue River, a team of innovators driven to radically change agriculture by creating intelligent machinery. We empower our customers – farmers - to implement more sustainable solutions: optimize chemical usage, reimagining routine processes, and improving farming yields year after year. We believe that focusing on the small stuff – pixel-by-pixel and plant-by-plant - leads to big gains. By partnering with John Deere, we are innovating computer vision, machine learning, robotics and product management to solve monumental challenges for our customers. Our people are at the heart of what we do.

Through cross-discipline collaboration, this mission-driven and daring team is eager to define the new frontier of agricultural robotics. We are always asking hard questions, rapidly iterating, and getting our boots in the field to figure it out. We won’t give up until we’ve made a tangible and positive impact on agriculture.

Position Summary

As a System Engineer, you will collaborate with your teammates to deliver the first See & Spray product to market! The system needs to meet the high performance and reliability standards that our customers expect and rely on. We seek our objectives with multi-functional engineering teams consisting of systems and embedded software, mechatronics, computer vision and machine learning engineers. These teams are empowered to figure out how to overcome challenges, plan and prioritize work - managers do not have all the answers.

The machines we are working on contribute to the bottom line of our farmers while protecting the environment and improving food quality! We work very closely with our dedicated field engineers as well as our team of agronomists. As a small company, we can offer everyone the opportunity to experience the product live in the field.


In this integration focused role, the ideal candidate will contribute to our code base as well as:

  • Collaboratively identify, develop, document and communicate software and interface requirements
  • Facilitate architecture decisions, tradeoff analysis and bug fixes
  • Produce detailed analysis of intended system behaviors and help define software architecture to achieve those behaviors
  • Engage with specialists to identify characteristics and limitations of domain specific software implementations
  • Develop verification and validation plans against system requirements and drive discussions across teams to ensure coverage
  • Play an active role in the planning and execution processes with key partners such as SW architects, technical leads, product management and leadership.

Required skills

  • Proven modern C++ skills to be able to contribute to our Linux based real time system.
  • You enjoy crafting sophisticated systems involving complex interactions between tightly orchestrated multi-disciplinary components.
  • You are a strong teammate who strives in an agile environment.
  • Your customer obsession is contagious.

Nice to have technical skills

  • Knowledge of publisher/subscriber based communication
  • Serialization libraries such as protocol buffers and flat buffers
  • CAN protocols
  • Linux kernel

Desired Professional Experience

  • MS in a related field
  • 5+ years of industrial experience
  • Track record of shipping robotic software systems to end customers

Blue River offers competitive compensation and benefits, including a great 401(K) match. We believe in a work life balance and offer generous Paid Time Off and Sick Leave as well as Paid Parental Leave and an adoption benefit. Subsidized lunches, flexible work hours, CalTrain passes (with mobile Wi-Fi!) and a collaborative and supportive environment also contribute to making Blue River a great place to work.

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status. We will ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation.

We support each employee living a full life, enabling a thriving career and accomplishing a meaningful, challenging mission with incredible people.

We have designed our work environment to allow us each to do our work effectively, be our best selves, and be exposed to the unexpected connections and experiences that support creative innovation - all while leaving room for the other things you love.

We have been operating as “mostly remote” during the pandemic. As we transition back to the office, we are introducing our Workplace Flexibility Model. Most roles will be based out of our Sunnyvale office and balance in-office time with flexibility to support other needs you have in your life. This flexibility could be used to reduce the Bay Area commute burden by working from home a couple days a week, support parent or caregiver needs, or allow space for you to do the other things you love, whatever that might be! There are times when achieving great work is more productive when working where you work best. That’s the point of this model...flexibility for you. A few roles will be approved as fully remote. Those are determined by managers and approved by our senior team.

We anticipate following this flexibility model starting mid-July 2021 as we continue to follow local guidelines and protocol around COVID.

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