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Mid Platform Engineer

Defense Unicorns

Defense Unicorns

Software Engineering
United States · Remote
Posted on Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Travel Expectations: 10-30%

Role Description:

We are looking for a skilled and experienced Mid-Level Platform Engineer with Site Reliability Engineer (SRE) experience to join our dynamic team. In this role, you will be pivotal in developing and maintaining our platform, leveraging your deep understanding of system architecture and strong problem-solving skills.

As a Mid-Level Platform Engineer within our organization, you will join a group of dedicated professionals committed to promoting freedom and independence on a global scale. Our team is focused on architecting, building, and deploying cloud-native solutions for both cloud and on-premises environments, enabling and enhancing mission capability. By collaborating with us, you will be part of an innovative effort that makes a significant impact worldwide.


In this role, you will help us automate and build a runtime Production Environment and serve as a link between the Applications, either custom development, COTS, or OSS, and that environment, advocating best practices and facilitating communication between the application teams and platform teams. Additionally, you'll play a crucial role in educating customers, assisting with or leading deployments, and maintaining deployments to ensure successful mission operations. This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a clearance and includes on-call responsibilities.

In this position, you will be expected to:

Validate Solutions/Implementations:

    • Ensure that solutions and implementations align with outlined tasks and business requirements.
    • Conduct thorough validations to maintain the integrity and efficiency of the platform.

Independently Problem Solve:

    • Demonstrate the ability to identify and solve business problems independently.
    • Develop small components to address specific challenges without relying on explicit architecture diagrams.

Understand Medium-Level Tasking:

    • Comprehend how medium-level tasks contribute to the achievement of overall goals.
    • Collaborate with cross-functional teams to integrate various components into a cohesive and functional platform.

Estimate Time and Effort:

    • Provide accurate time and effort estimates for medium-sized tasks.
    • Assist in project planning and resource allocation based on estimated timelines.

Demonstrate Programming Language Proficiency:

    • Possess familiarity with at least one programming language.
    • Exhibit a basic understanding of when to use a programming language versus a shell for efficient task execution.

Own the bridge between the Application Development team and the Production Environment:

    • Interject "best practices" to the application development team and facilitate collaboration between the application development and platform teams.
    • Lead discussions on the benefits of using cyber-secure tools.
    • Establish and facilitate automated Zarf builds as part of CI for multiple app dev teams.
    • Collaborate with the Platform team on End-to-End (E2E) and Integration testing.

Contribute to CI/CD and other automation experiences:

    • Build and maintain automated pipeline functions, leading teams towards delivery and sustainment options.
    • Implement infrastructure as code and contribute to the build/maintenance of EKS & RKE2 instantiations.
    • Apply extensive experience with cloud deployments, emphasizing secure coding practices and vulnerability remediation.
    • Exhibit strong programming skills and deep familiarity with Linux/Unix operating systems.
    • Create and maintain operational runbooks and alerts, ensuring API orchestration and cyber-secure approaches.

Travel Expectations: 4-12 times per year

The listed responsibilities are not exhaustive and additional responsibilities may be assigned based on the evolving needs of the organization. We are seeking a dynamic individual who is able to adapt and take on new responsibilities as they arise.

Preferred Experience and Qualifications:

  • Proven experience as a Platform Engineer or Site Reliability Engineer, with a focus on system architecture and development.
  • Strong problem-solving skills and the ability to work independently.
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to collaborate effectively with cross-functional teams.
  • Proficiency in at least one programming language (e.g., Python, Go) and a basic understanding of shell scripting.
  • Prior experience in estimating time and effort for medium-sized tasks.
  • Demonstrated ability to guide and mentor junior engineers.
  • Experience with security automation and familiarity with API Security, Container Security, and AWS Cloud Security.
  • Knowledge of Information Security frameworks/standards, such as ISO/IEC 27001:2013, CSA CCM, NIST CSF, HMG SPF, and Cyber Essentials.
  • Firm grasp of AWS cloud infrastructure design aligning security, performance, and resilience.
  • Implementation and testing of security policies with a working knowledge of web infrastructure and tools.
  • Experience in architecture security design, monitoring, and performance instrumentation in a complex enterprise environment.
  • Demonstrated familiarity with cloud-native technologies such as Kubernetes, Google Cloud, and Docker.
  • Familiarity with continuous delivery, distributed architectures, systems, everything-as-code, containerization, and cloud services.
  • Comfort with debugging systems, reading/writing code, and understanding Incident, Problem, Change, and Release management processes.
  • Experienced in Department of Defense work, specifically working on an Authority to Operate (ATO'd) system.
  • Experienced with automated testing.
  • Hold a security clearance/Eligible to apply for a security clearance. United States citizenship is required.
  • Possess a DoD 8570 IAT II certification.

If you are a skilled Platform Engineer looking to contribute to the growth and success of a dynamic organization, we invite you to apply and join our team.

Full compensation packages are based on candidate experience. Compensation ranges are established using national benchmarking data and apply across all geographic locations within the United States.

Remote - USA
$147,175$190,000 USD

Who We Are

Defense Unicorns delivers mission value by streamlining software delivery so our customers can focus on the most important challenges. We share a vision of freedom and security for the advancement of progress and innovation. Our commitment to this vision, and to our mission-driven customers, means a commitment to speed, user experience and optionality, without compromising security. Our team is composed of innovators, software engineers, and veterans with decades of experience delivering technology programs across the federal market.

What We Do

We create and deliver secure solutions for continuous software integration and delivery. Defense Unicorns consolidates the best practices for security pipelines, testing, and deployment automation in order to meet the high security requirements valued by mission owners. Our solutions are agnostic by design and we believe that growing a robust ecosystem of secure, cloud-native software solutions can help enterprise customers inside and outside the federal market buy and integrate software more easily.

Who We Serve

Defense Unicorns’ customers are mission-focused leaders across public and private enterprises. We proudly support defense and civil agencies across the U.S. government and we work closely with the creators of leading-edge software solutions to deliver value to the mission-owner by improving the security and consumability of commercial software products.

What We Work On

  • Kubernetes
  • Cloud Environments (AWS/GCP and Azure)
  • Infrastructure-as-code (like Terraform/Pulumi)
  • Continuous Delivery and automation tooling
  • GitOps
  • Containers
  • CNCF projects and open source products and packages
  • Helm/Kustomize-Value Stream Mapping
  • Building and improving security delivery
  • Building Kubernetes and cloud native applications

Benefits Our Unicorns Enjoy


  • Medical/Dental/Vision
  • Premiums are 100% Company Paid
  • Health Reimbursement Account
  • Life Insurance
  • Disability Insurance


  • 401k with Employer Contribution (Regardless of Employee Contribution)
  • Company Stock Options
  • Home Office Setup Budget


  • Unlimited paid time off, with a mandatory 10 days off on top of 11 federal government holidays, week of Thanksgiving, last two weeks of December (including New Year’s Day)
  • Paid Parental Leave


  • Reimbursement for approved trainings/subscriptions
  • Conferences (travel, lodging, and fees)

Don’t have all the preferred experience or qualifications? Studies show that underrepresented groups like women and people of color are less likely to apply to jobs if they don't meet every requirement listed.

At Defense Unicorns, we're committed to diversity. If you're enthusiastic about the role but don't match every criteria, we encourage you to apply. You could be the perfect fit for this or another role! Defense Unicorns is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, veteran status, genetic information, union status and/or beliefs, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law.