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Backend Software Engineer

Are you passionate about building beautiful software? Do you focus on the craft of software development, and take pride in shipping reliable and well-architected code? Do you want to work in a tight-knit group that makes something that thousands of small businesses depend on every day? If so, Nutshell is the place for you.

We’re hiring a backend software engineer to work on our PHP web application. We’re looking for someone with at least 2-3 years of experience in software development. This doesn’t have to be PHP, but in the arena of backend web development, including API design, SQL, and asynchronous queuing.

We believe well-crafted software means well-crafted pixels, functions, classes, and infrastructure. We value learning, and that means prototyping, shipping, and iterating in small batches. We seek the right tool for the job, which is often a bit more stable than the flavor of the week.

You should probably apply if…

You’re an engineer with talent for turning ideas into code that others find easy to understand and modify. You understand that writing software means communicating with people more than communicating with computers. You care about writing testable code and the velocity that good continuous integration provides. You’ll thrive here if you:

  • Enjoy helping those around you grow
  • Have an excellent ability to communicate aloud and with a keyboard
  • Love to learn, and cultivate habits to make this happen
  • Know how to focus and develop flow when you need to concentrate
  • Take pleasure in practice, craftsmanship, momentum, and camaraderie

About the job

As a backend software engineer, you’ll team up with others in various stacks at Nutshell. You can hone your skills alongside a frontend team that writes for both web and mobile in React + React Native, while you build the GraphQL and cloud infrastructure that powers our app. You’ll work with the data we store in MySQL and Solr on AWS. And with our continuous integration and rapid development stack, you’ll deploy tested, peer-reviewed code to production on your first day.

Great candidates should have:

  • Development experience in web application backend languages—PHP, Python, Ruby, or something else
  • Working knowledge of modern software development frameworks, including server-side MVC (e.g. Symfony, Rails)
  • Strong background in SQL and relational databases
  • Background and opinions on HTTP API design—we’ve got a blend of JSON-RPC, REST, and GraphQL
  • Experience with unit testing and continuous integration

Our technology stack includes:

  • PHP, Symfony, Nginx, MySQL, Solr, Gearman, and more, all running on AWS, managed with Ansible
  • React, React Native, Redux, and Webpack for web and mobile frontend tooling
  • Vagrant boxes for local development
  • GitHub for code management and review
  • Continuous integration via Jenkins

What we offer

As a product team

Nutshell’s product team offers the opportunity to learn from a smart group of teammates who support and drive one another to succeed. Today, our product group comprises nine designers and engineers. Some have decades of experience, some are just out of college with a CS degree, and a few have entered software engineering as a second career.

As a company

  • Opportunities to learn and thrive in a friendly, growing SaaS business
  • A commitment to an inclusive environment that supports our diverse team
  • A connection to Ann Arbor’s software and startup community through our network of friends and partners
  • A modern office located as an anchor tenant at Cahoots in downtown Ann Arbor
  • Flexibility in working modes and locations, as we carefully regroup at our office, following a year of working from home
  • The sincerity and commitment of an established company: excellent health benefits, 401(k) matching, an experienced leadership team, and a profitable, growing financial position
  • The opportunity to help thousands of small businesses each day
  • Trust and autonomy to ensure you can be the best version of you

Interested? Then please get in touch! We’d like to hear from you even if you don’t think you fit into one of our current open positions. Our team has been working from home since 2020, and is progressively returning to our Ann Arbor office. Nutshell has always supported flexible work schedules, and much of our team is still working from home. We also believe that we work best when we can occasionally meet face-to-face, stretch out in front of a whiteboard, and build rapport in person, which is why candidates who are local to southeast Michigan are preferred.

To apply, send us an email with your resume and a brief, personal cover letter to We can’t wait to hear from you!

5 reasons to make Nutshell your new home (figuratively speaking, of course)

#1 We need people who can make an impact

Nutshell is a growth-stage business with very ambitious goals. No matter what your professional or educational background is, if you never back down from a challenge and take pride in your work, we want you.

#2 We’re solving meaningful problems in innovative ways

Know any cool small businesses? We know (and love) thousands of them! That’s why we’re designing, building, marketing, and supporting cutting-edge software that helps small businesses thrive. You’ll learn something new every day at Nutshell and be able to see your real-world impact on the people who choose to use Nutshell as their growth software.

#3 We’re proud to support the Ann Arbor community

Ann Arbor is one of the region’s tech success stories and Nutshell is an established member of that community. We host the SE Michigan JavaScript Meetup right in our own office, and Nutshellers have been featured presenters at numerous conferences, including The Small Business Web Summit, CodeMash, Detroit Dev Day, BrightConf, Girl Develop It, and the Great Lakes Software Excellence Conference.

Nutshell is committed to doing our part to create an equitable and just society, and has supported local organizations including Hack the Gap, Black Girls Code – Detroit, Detroit Justice Center, Survivors Speak – Ypsilanti, and SafeHouse Ann Arbor.

#4 We work in the heart of the action

Nutshell’s modern, energetic office in downtown Ann Arbor is within walking distance of everything and loaded with all the resources our team needs to create amazing things.We enjoy flexibility in our working locations and hours. We’ve been working from home since 2020, and are excited to eventually return to our workspace in Cahoots.

#5 We’ll treat you right

Nutshell offers established-company perks (competitive compensation, health benefits, 401(k) matching, paid parental leave, family-friendly outings, and an experienced leadership team), plus all the trappings of a startup (offsites in northern Michigan, trivia nights, an office writing club, a #dadjokes Slack channel, and desks that go up AND down).

Our team cares about creating and facilitating an inclusive environment for everyone. We don’t discriminate based on race, gender, religion, color, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, age, disability, veteran status, or other factors that serve to increase our diversity, creativity, and experiential differences.

Nutshell is one of the “Top Ann Arbor Tech Companies to Watch in 2021” according to

Swing by our company page and Instagram to learn more about who we are and what we do, and visit our jobs page to see the latest open positions at Nutshell.

Location Ann Arbor

Employment Type Full Time

Experience 2 years

Compensation Market Related

Benefits Package

Nutshell offers established-company perks (competitive compensation, health benefits, 401(k) matching, paid parental leave, family-friendly outings, and an experienced leadership team), plus all the trappings of a startup (offsites in northern Michigan, trivia nights, an office writing club, a #dadjokes Slack channel, and desks that go up AND down).

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