Growing Atlassian still looking for CTO


Atlassian this week flagged plans to hire an additional 40 staff members in Sydney and more around the world. But six months after it started looking, the rapidly expanding Australian software group has not been able to fill a key vacant role — for a vice president of engineering.

The company first advertised the VP engineering/CTO role in March, with the company’s chief executive and co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes (above, left, with co-founder Scott Farquhar) writing on his blog at the time that it was “searching the world for an absolute rockstar”.

“If you know anyone suitable — or maybe you’re just an engineer whose boss is absolutely kickass but you want him to move to you can get his job, please send them a link,” he wrote. “If you heard about the job on this blog and you send the right candidate, I’ll personally mail you a case of Aussie beer anywhere in the world.”

However, the job is still listed as available on Atlassian’s site.

The company’s global HR director Joris Luijke said it was looking for the best. “And the best is not easy to find,” he added. “We’ve had a lot of interest, with over 130 applications — still searching for the person with the right background and skills.”

The lack of a CTO hasn’t stopped Atlassian from continuing its expansion plans, however, following on from the US$60 million venture capital investment round it took from Accel Partners in July. After being named the 2010 NSW Premier’s Exporter of the Year this week, the company this week flagged plans to invest $10 million in new Sydney jobs in 2010 and 2011, with 40 new hires planned. The company is also hiring internationally — in Europe and the US.

In Europe, the company is looking to hire what it terms in-country Atlassian ‘ambassadors’ throughout the continent.

“We’re looking for people who have a combination of engineering-savvy, marketing know-how, and a little pizazz to represent Atlassian in their countries,” wrote the company’s global marketing director Benjamin Naftzger on its blog this week. The move comes in tandem with the launch of local versions of Atlassian’s website in German, French and Japanese.

“In addition, we’re taking our new crowdsourced translations platform,, public,” he wrote. “We’ve received over 100,000 translations from customers and partners during the beta program, providing over 30 language packs for Atlassian’s core products: JIRA, GreenHopper and Confluence.”

The Sydney jobs advertised on Atlassian’s site are primarily technical jobs — with titles like ‘systems engineer’, ‘javascript developer’ and so on. Internationally, the company has broader roles on offer — for example marketing coordinators are needed in San Francisco and Amsterdam.

Image credit: Atlassian