Machine Learning Engineer

Handshake, San Francisco

Handshake is helping to democratize opportunity

Our mission is to democratize opportunity - to make it easy for any student to build a great career, no matter where they go to school, what they're majoring in, or who they know.
Backed by $34m from Spark Capital, Kleiner Perkins, True Ventures and Lightspeed Partners, Handshake has partnered with 500 universities (schools of all sizes and locations, including Stanford, Princeton, UVA, Michigan, Texas, Spelman and Harvey Mudd), and has more than 8 million student profiles and 200,000 companies recruiting on our platform, including 100% of the Fortune 500. Our extensive data on students' interests and historical career outcomes gives Handshake the unique ability to help students imagine, plan and jumpstart their future careers. 

What does a Machine Learning Engineer do at Handshake?

You are a pragmatic experimenter - someone who is deeply passionate about Handshake’s mission, and motivated to get their hands dirty to test and productize new features: job recommendations, search quality, career path builders, fraud detection, you name it.

You will enjoy working with an incredibly rich and fast-growing data set:

  • Entity graph and metadata of universities and hundreds of thousands of employers, from Fortune 500 to small-and-medium businesses
  • Comprehensive student profiles, interest graphs, and rich interaction data from millions of students growing exponentially every year
  • A growing repository of user-generated content

Here are some projects we're excited for you to work on at Handshake

  • Wrangle all of the data :-)
  • Build & Experiment: Apply the best methodology and tools available (Spark, Airflow, TensorFlow etc). Build proofs-of-concepts, and measure results against hypothesis.
  • Collaborate & Ship Products: Make educated trade-offs, and work closely with product and engineering teams to quickly iterate and ship features.
  • User-focused: Always focus on user impact. We are building the best platform to democratize career opportunities for students and young professionals.
  • Leadership: Mentor junior members and help build a strong data team and culture.

What we look for

You have a background in computer science or a related technical field, at least 3 years of experience working with large datasets, and shipping machine-learning-based features. You are scrappy, entrepreneurial, results-focused, proactive, a team-player, and have success using analytics and machine-learning to build products and drive key results.  
  • Bold, builder mentality.
  • 2+ years of shipping machine learning code, with at least 4+ years software engineering experience
  • Experience with large data sets and distributed computing (Hive/Hadoop/Spark) a plus.
  • Experience building and tuning search engines and recommendation engines a big plus.
  • Ability to independently initiate and drive projects to completion.
  • Ability to communicate the results of analyses in a clear and effective manner.
  • Bachelor Degree in Computer Science, Math, Physics, Engineering, or related quantitative field. Advanced degrees preferred, but not required.


  • Stock: Ownership in a fast-growing company.
  • Family Focus: Parental leave and flexibility for families.
  • Time Off: Flexible vacation policy to encourage people to get out and see the world.
  • Healthcare: World-class medical, dental, and vision policies.
  • 401k: We care about your ability to save for your future.
  • Goodies: Whatever hardware and software you need to get the job done.
  • Team Fun: Regularly scheduled events, sports, game nights, book clubs.
  • Learning: Learning & Development opportunities for you to grow your skills and career.
  • Great team: Working with fun, hard working, nice people who are committed to making a difference!
  • ...And much more!

We value diversity of all kinds, and are committed to building a diverse and inclusive workplace where we learn from each other. We are an equal opportunity employer and welcome people of all different backgrounds, experiences, abilities, and perspectives.  

About Handshake

How we got started Handshake was started in 2014 by Garrett Lord, Scott Ringwelski and Ben Christensen - three students from Michigan Tech, an engineering school in the far reaches of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Surrounded by more than 200 inches of annual snowfall and an eight-hour drive from Chicago or Detroit, Michigan Tech doesn’t see many recruiters from outside of the Midwest. Garrett was particularly frustrated about the difficulty Michigan Tech engineering students faced in getting in the door at top tech companies. So after hustling nonstop to get a Silicon Valley internship of his own, he took matters into his own hands and started brokering intros for his classmates to Bay Area companies. He earned $60k in referral bonuses in less than a year, and paid his way through college. Encouraged by the impact one person could make at one campus, Garrett, Scott, and Ben bought an old car and drove to college campuses across the country. They learned that students, employers and career centers were all frustrated by the current process, particularly how student access to opportunities was so unequal. So they formed Handshake to transform university recruiting for the 20 million higher education students across the country and ensure that every student would have the same access to every job, no matter where they go to school. Today, Handshake is a fast-growing team of 80 based in San Francisco. We partner with 400+ universities, uniting them into one powerful network, which makes it easy for 200,000 companies to recruit efficiently beyond their traditional “core” schools, increasing the breadth and scope of opportunities for our 8,000,000 students, and giving our partner universities the data and tools they need to help their students build meaningful careers.

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