Senior Applied Research Scientist

Flexport, Bellevue, WA; San Francisco, CA

Fixing the user experience in global trade.

The Opportunity:

Flexport is looking for a creative, technically-minded Senior Applied Research Scientist (ARS) who is motivated to solve some of the world’s most challenging problems in global trade.  

Data is at the heart of our business, and as a Senior ARS, you will work to evaluate and provide insights into our physical and digital products. In collaboration with multidisciplinary product, engineering, and business/operations teams, you will apply advanced Machine Learning (ML) and Operations Research (OR) methods to deliver data-driven insights and automated decision-making in Flexport’s freight forwarding products. 

Our business, product, and engineering teams collaborate closely with our Applied Research Scientists to share domain knowledge, test hypotheses at scale, and develop promising solutions that can be quickly and widely deployed. We are passionate about providing effortlessly accessible intelligence and actionable insights to our end users. Our ideal candidate is: self-motivated, highly analytical, technically excellent at writing code, and passionate about delivering cutting-edge solutions.  

You Will:

  • Work collaboratively with product, engineering, and business to:
    • find opportunities to improve and enhance our technology products, 
    • understand Flexport’s business and operations processes to identify impact opportunities, and
    • translate ambiguous business requirements into the right technical/quantitative solution.
  • Perform requirements gathering and data gathering & analysis.  
  • Research prior work to inform and develop models and algorithms and quantify appropriate metrics & targets.
  • Perform R&D of new models/algorithms and refactor ML/OR solutions to support scalable production deployment. 
  • Deliver compelling data-driven solutions to support automated decision-making at scale.
  • Work with large and complex data sets. Solve difficult data analysis problems by applying advanced analytical methods as needed. 
  • Develop prototype data analyses and data assets iteratively as needed to generate actionable insights. 
  • Communicate findings to technical collaborators and business stakeholders. 
  • Drive and hands-on contribute to model/algorithmic development.  


You Should Have:

Minimum Qualifications

  • Ph.D. (or equivalent industry or research experience) in quantitative fields, such as Operations Research, Computer Science, Mathematics, etc. 
  • 5+ years of hands-on experience in predictive and quantitative modeling and analysis.
  • Experience and strong expertise in business analytics, forecasting, or supply chain planning, emphasizing quantitative modeling and analysis.
  • Experience and a strong background in algorithm design, engineering, and implementation.
  • Experience and a strong background in optimization methods for solving linear, mixed-integer, and dynamic programs.
  • Understanding of MIP strategies to customize/leverage commercial/open-source solvers. 
  • Software development experience using general-purpose programming languages like Python, Java, or C/++, C#
  • Experience working with large data sets and knowledge of tools for big data analytics (e.g., SQL, Python, Perl, or Ruby).

Preferred Qualifications

  • Knowledge of decomposition/iterative methods for solving large-scale optimization problems.
  • Expertise in designing and implementing optimization models and algorithms for large-scale discrete/combinatorial problems (e.g., vehicle routing, inventory planning, scheduling, network design, scheduling, and facility location).
  • Expertise in developing metaheuristics and matheuristics algorithms for extreme-scale combinatorial optimization.
  • Experience taking research prototypes to production.
  • Some experience in business analytics, forecasting, or supply chain planning, emphasizes quantitative modeling and analysis.
  • Some experience in machine learning and statistical techniques such as classification, clustering, regression, statistical inference, collaborative filtering, and experimental design.
  • Proven object-oriented design and implementation skills (Python, Java, and C++).
  • Understanding of scalable computing systems, software architecture, and data structures.
  • Experience leading the development of complex software systems that have been successfully deployed.
  • Knowledge of software engineering best practices for the complete software development life cycle.
  • Strong research track record with contributions to research communities via publications in top conferences and journals and code contributions in open source communities such as COIN-OR, scikit-learn, CLTK, NLTK, etc.


About Flexport:

We believe trade can move the human race forward. That’s why it’s our mission to make global trade easy for everyone. Flexport is building the platform for global logistics, empowering buyers, sellers and their logistics partners with the technology and services to grow and innovate. Today, companies of all sizes—from emerging brands to Fortune 500s—use Flexport technology to move more than $10B of merchandise across 112 countries every year. 

Worried about not having any logistics experience?

Don’t be! Our mission is to make global trade easy for everyone. That’s why it’s important to bring people from diverse backgrounds and experiences together with our industry veterans to help move the global logistics industry forward.

We know this industry is complex. That’s why we invest in education starting day one with Flexport Academy, a one week intensive onboarding program designed specifically to set every new Flexport employee up for success. 

At Flexport, our ability to fulfill our mission of making global trade easy for everyone relies on having a diverse, dedicated and engaged workforce. That is why Flexport is committed to creating and nurturing an environment where anyone can be their authentic self. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment regardless of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, physical and mental disability, health status, marital and family status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, military and veteran status, and any other characteristic protected by applicable law.

About Flexport

Flexport is a licensed freight forwarder that uses people and software to manage the complexity of international trade. Shipping something from Shenzhen to Cincinnati or Rotterdam to LA requires complex coordination. Currently that’s done by telephones, spreadsheets, and fax machines. Flexport provides a web-based app that offers real-time visibility of your shipments. And we’re not just a software platform: Our experienced logistics and customs experts are here to help at every step of the way. We offer services in air freight, ocean freight, trucking, warehouse & fulfillment, customs brokerage, and cargo insurance. Learn more about our services and request a live demo. Flexport is a freight forwarder for the Internet age. “What we do at Flexport” explains what we mean.

Want to learn more about Flexport? Visit Flexport's website.