Ontario Institute for Cancer Research



, Ontario


Job Type:


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554 days ago Apply now

Position:              Software Architect II
Site:                      MaRS Centre, Toronto
Department:         Genome Informatics
Reports To:          Director, Genome Informatics and Principal Investigator Level I
Salary:                  Commensurate with level of experience
Hours:                   35 hours/week
Status:                  Full-time, Permanent

We are growing! With new projects and lots of exciting technologies, the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) is looking for a passionate and talented Software Architect to join the Genome Informatics team to continue building cutting edge tools and infrastructures used by researchers around the globe to fight cancer.

Our open source applications handle vast amounts of data (2+ PB) and run on large compute environments. Designed and implemented by our in-house developers, we maintain a diverse set of tools and projects, from complex ETL systems to modern user interfaces. The Genome Informatics team has worked on a variety of projects including:

  • ICGC-DCC (githubapplication) – Our most mature and well known project is a submission system comprised of an ETL pipeline and data portal coordinating cancer research on 86 projects with participants from all over the world. With ICGC-ARGO ICGC is entering a new phase with an engaging and complex set of software engineering challenges ahead of us, such as providing researchers with access to 100’s of billions of genetic variants.
  • ICGC-ARGO (githubapplication) – The next generation and evolution of the original ICGC-DCC, this platform aims to uniformly analyze specimens from 100,000 donors with high quality clinical data in order to address outstanding questions that are vital to the quest to defeat cancer.
  • Cancer Genome Collaboratory (githubwebsite) – A compute and storage cloud operated by the team which is progressively enhanced with more tools to assist researchers running analysis pipelines.


  • VirusSeq Data Portal for COVID-19 (githubapplication) – The goal of the CanCOGeN VirusSeq project is to sequence up to 150,000 viral samples from Canadians testing positive for COVID-19 and make the sequences and associated non-personal contextual data available for research and exploration in an open-source and open-access data portal.
  • Human Cancer Models Initiative (HCMI) Catalog (github,application) – A searchable catalog of cancer models.

As part of the Genome Informatics team, the successful candidate will be joining some of the above-mentioned projects, but also be contributing to (githubwebsite), our suite of open-source components for big data genomic science in the cloud.

We are looking for a passionate Software Architect to join our agile development team. In this role, you will serve as a technical guiding force for multiple ongoing projects as well as be responsible for spearheading and championing technical innovation.

OICR has a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy in place that requires proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or proof of a medical exemption issued pursuant to the Government of Ontario guidelines.  Accordingly, as a condition of employment, new employees who may be required to work on-site are required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 subject to the duty to accommodate on the basis of protected grounds pursuant to the Ontario Human Rights Code.

Fully vaccinated is defined as having received all of the required doses of a Health Canada approved vaccine and having received the final dose at least 14 days before your employment start date.

As described above, the requirement to be fully vaccinated is subject to the Ontario Human Rights Code. If the candidate is unable to receive the COVID-19 vaccine for a reason protected by the Code, requests for accommodation from the vaccine policy will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

To learn more about working at OICR, visit our career page.

  • Provide oversight and technical guidance on multiple concurrent projects, making critical decisions on all aspects of the team’s technical approach to any given deliverable
  • Spearhead greenfield architecture design for new products and services. Provide the team with technical blueprints that can be followed for implementation
  • Oversee and support the coaching and training of team members to ensure all necessary team members are confident in the development of software services
  • Actively seek ways to improve software processes and interactions by always keeping abreast of the technical challenges the team is facing
  • Champion best practices and technical innovation
  • Engage in a highly collaborative, fast paced, fully agile development environment
  • Ability to learn and utilize new technologies and ramp up quickly while being as self-sufficient as possible in doing so
  • 8+ years of experience building complex applications in a professional setting utilizing agile methodologies in a leadership role
  • Able to confidently lead technical architecture discussions and help drive technical decisions within the team
  • Clear and concise communication and collaboration skills. Explaining complex technical concepts to designers, product owners and other developers comes easily to you.
  • Must have the following:
    • Experience building Microservices and distributed systems
    • Ability to utilize different Database Systems as needed SQL & NoSQL
    • Experience with containerized applications and platforms: Docker, Kubernetes/ECS/Swarm/OpenShift.
    • Strong Software design and modeling skills: OOP, Design patterns, UML diagrams, DB schemas.
    • Experience with one or more Cloud Platforms (AWS, GCP, Azure, OpenStack)
    • Experience building Production level systems, focusing on: security, automated testing, monitoring, and performance.
  • Experience with all or some of the following technologies:
    • Java 8+: Spring, Spring Boot
    • JS, Express, Typescript/ES6
    • Elasticsearch / Solr
    • Event sourcing (Apache Kafka) and message queues (RabbitMQ)
    • GraphQL, Apollo Server
    • Build Systems: Maven,Gradle, npm
    • Continuous integration tools: Travis, Jenkins, GitLab, etc.
  • Experience or exposure with the following technologies is a plus:
    • Linux OS
    • Functional Programming Concepts (in any language)
    • Reactive Programming Concepts/Frameworks/Libraries (Spring Webflux/Reactor, RxJava, Bacon.js, etc)
    • Prior experience in genomics or health data
Additional Information:

The interview process will involve virtual interviews with whiteboard questions aimed at challenging your skills and assessing your approach to new and complex problems.

To find out more about what’s happening in Genome Informatics, visit OICR news.

OICR is an innovative cancer research institute located in the MaRS Centre in the Discovery District in downtown Toronto. OICR is addressing significant challenges in cancer research with multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional teams. New discoveries to prevent, detect and treat cancer will be moved from the bench to practical applications in patients. The OICR team is growing quickly. We are innovative, dedicated professionals who bring expertise to each of our roles. We are looking for individuals interested in being part of a culture of excellence that will result in Ontario being recognized internationally as a leading jurisdiction for cancer research.

Launched in December 2005, OICR is an independent institute funded by the Government of Ontario through the Ministry of Colleges and Universities.

For more information about OICR, please visit the website at

OICR is an inclusive employer dedicated to building a diverse workforce. We encourage applications from all qualified candidates and will accommodate applicants’ needs throughout all stages of the recruitment and selection process. Please advise the Recruiter to ensure your accessibility needs are accommodated throughout this process. Information received relating to accommodation will be addressed confidentially.

CLOSING DATE: Until filled

Applications received by Wednesday, August 10, 2022 will be considered for the first round of interviews to take place mid-August. Applications received after this date will be considered for further round of interviews as needed.

The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research thanks all applicants. However, only those under consideration will be contacted.

Resume Format: If you elect to apply, you will need a text or HTML version of your resume so that you can cut and paste it into the application box provided. Before you submit the completed application, you will be asked to attach one or two files to your application. Please attach your resume as a .pdf or .doc file.


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