Distinguished Engineer, Data Platform

  • Palo Alto, CA, USA
  • Full-time

Company Description

Common Purpose, Uncommon Opportunity. Everyone at Visa works with one goal in mind – making sure that Visa is the best way to pay and be paid, for everyone everywhere. This is our global vision and the common purpose that unites the entire Visa team. As a global payments technology company, tech is at the heart of what we do: Our VisaNet network processes over 13,000 transactions per second for people and businesses around the world, enabling them to use digital currency instead of cash and checks. We are also global advocate for financial inclusion, working with partners around the world to help those who lack access to financial services join the global economy. Visa’s sponsorships, including the Olympics and FIFA™ World Cup, celebrate teamwork, diversity, and excellence throughout the world. If you have a passion to make a difference in the lives of people around the world, Visa offers an uncommon opportunity to build a strong, thriving career. Visa is fueled by our team of talented employees who continuously raise the bar on delivering the convenience and security of digital currency to people all over the world. Join our team and find out how Visa is everywhere you want to be.

Job Description

You may have noticed that payment has become a very active/hot area in the last several years. Given the strong demands and innovation, this will be a very exciting area in the next 5 to 10 years. VISA is clearly a very strong leader in the payment industry, and is in a fast pace of technology transformation. For a payment system to work well, advance technologies such as data platform, big data, data mining, machine learning, cloud, etc. are critical. In VISA, we have all of these. The Data Platform (DP) Department is in the center for many of these technologies and development.

The Data Platform Department is a key component of Visa's Technology organization that provides an enriched and valuable ecosystem of data platform and data services to drive innovation for our partners and clients, within Visa and globally. Data is the most valuable asset in Visa. The Data Platform Department is dedicated to develop advanced technology (e.g. Cloud, Machine Learning and Big Data), systems and services to make data secure, high quality, rich, fast, and easy to use, therefore enabling Visa with the ability to leverage its data asset in an effective and timely manner to maximize technology/business development and differentiate Visa from others in the payment industry. The department maintains tens of petabytes of data supporting over 100 services for various internal lines of business and external clients. Our technical stack has two layers: Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Data as a service (DaaS).

We are looking for an outstanding technical individual who can lead and drive the technical direction and strategy of our data platform including both the DaaS layer and the PaaS layer. This person will be involved in the architecture design and development of the key areas like big data End to End, including data acquisition, cleaning, processing, enrichment, aggregation, metric computation, packaging, data quality insurance, usability, efficiency, timeliness, etc., as well as the selection and development of the key data platform techniques for batch processing, streaming, real-time data processing, and analytic needs. This is done through largely scalable and efficiency data engineering, automation, tooling, and usability enabling using modern big data and cloud technology. This position offers you the opportunity to be at the center of innovation in the payments industry and unleash the power of data through building a mission-critical big data solutions/services.

This position reports to the SVP of Data Platform, and is based in Palo Alto. The DE position is responsible for developing and executing a shared strategic vision for a mission-critical DaaS and PaaS layers of the Visa Data Platform that enables Visa to be a world-leading data-driven company. A successful candidate will have demonstrated ability to lead and drive complex and challenging technical initiatives. Prior experience must include technical leadership for mission-critical large scale data systems for analytic and operational use. Examples include real-time data collection systems, large scale data pipelines, data processing, enrichment, data quality insurance, metric computation, data usage, cloud technology like Hadoop and Spark, predictive analytics, and near real-time data systems.

A successful candidate will have demonstrated excellence in deep technical understanding in the big data area, delivery for big data systems/services internal to organization, for delivery to internal and external customers and for programs that cut across multiple organizations.

We desire a candidate who has grown into a technical leader after strong personal achievements as a hands-on data system builder in the related areas. Demonstrated success in building partnerships with other technology functions such as operations, security, development, and data sciences is required.

A successful candidate must have a very deep technology background and the ability to engage in high bandwidth conversations with business and technology executives. S/he must be able to think broadly about Visa’s business and articulate and drive business value of technology initiatives. Candidates must have demonstrated success in organizational transformations along dimensions such as deep partnerships and agile collaboration with business, fostering a culture that encourages innovation, agile product development process, location and technology migrations


  • Develop vision, strategies and roadmaps to meet business objectives with existing or emerging technologies in Data Platform by partnering with other stakeholders in DP and Visa
  • Foster innovation and leverage new technologies
  • Be mission driven and passionate about having a lasting impact by driving key initiatives
  • Champion culture changes needed to recognize and manage data as a first-order business asset
  • Responsible for overall technology selection and architecture design. Apply creative thinking/approach to determine technical solutions that further business goals and align with corporate technology strategies, keeping in mind security, performance, reliability, scalability, usability, flexibility, and cost
  • Instill best practices for software development and service execution. Drive for engineering excellence including automation, quality, efficiency, and productivity. Automation and reliability are the key for providing large scale services effectively.
  • Drive proper data consumption and adoption across the company
  • Provide technical guidance to the team including data architecture, design, code reviews, data quality, data usability and comprehensiveness
  • Drive the culture in the org on gaining deeper and deeper knowledge about our data
  • Define success metrics and SLA with agreed targets
  • Attract top talents in the Big Data and Data Platform areas, help to grow and mentor team members with high potential
  • Build partnerships with internal stakeholders across Visa
  • Contribute to building Visa’s technology brand through internal and external initiatives


  • Bachelor degree or higher in a technical field such as computer science and computer engineering
    Experience demonstrating strong leadership, self-motivation, accountability, and team player. Strong C-Suite/Board communication skills
  • 15+ years of industry experience in the big data and data analytics areas, including experience of leading large scale technical initiatives in the Big Data area
  • 5+ years of hands on software development experience related to data
  • Strong business and technical vision
  • Strong at data and platform architecture design of complex large scale data systems
  • Proven experience leading the software development of highly available enterprise level data processing, application systems, and platform also as services.
  • Deep expertise in the areas of big data and cloud platform technology such as Hadoop, Spark, HBase, and Kafka is required. Experience in the areas of machine learning, data mining, databases, data analysis, and BI are also important.
  • Technical background in data with deep understanding of issues in multiple areas such as data management, data analysis, query processing, distributed processing, high availability, statistical, data mining, machine learning and operational excellence of production systems
  • Strong at technical goal setting for a project with actionable success metrics. Good knowledge and experience on measuring a service from a user experience angle
  • Strong at identifying problems, solving complex problems with simple solutions
  • Think strategically.  See patterns and relationships in information and events; clarify and simplify complex information; anticipate trends and possibilities that may lead to new business opportunities; consistently think and act “ahead of the curve;” anticipate and effectively respond with urgency to immediate opportunities; executes plans vigorously and with flexibility; operate proactively; identify and address long-term opportunities
  • Ability to work in a complex organization to determine business and customer needs, providing the best solution to meet those needs
  • Exceptional collaboration and partnership skills with the ability to work in a global environment and drive consensus in cross-functional teams.
  • Excellent oral, written and presentation skills. In particular, a demonstrated ability to effectively communicate technical and business issues and solutions to multiple organizational levels internally and externally.
  • Strong customer centric mindset.
  • Payment industry experience is a plus

Additional Information

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