Junior Software Developers - COSMIC

Are you looking to make a difference in cancer research, supporting one of the world’s leading cancer genomics resources?

COSMIC (Catalogue of Somatic Mutations in Cancer), is an expertly curated and world-renowned scientific cancer genomics data resource.  COSMIC captures the overwhelming flood of cancer genomics data and transforms it into datasets and tools that are used by tens of thousands of commercial, academic and clinical users every day. Commercial biotech, pharma and drug discovery companies pay for access to the data so that COSMIC (as a non-profit organisation) can provide the data resource free to support, research and development for the academic community.

About the Role:

We are seeking to recruit two passionate Junior Software Developers to join our team. You will be working with front-end web technologies to support the design and development of robust, maintainable, and performant new and existing COSMIC web applications with the guidance of a Senior/Principal Developer. This varied role will see you enabling software and services for COSMIC’s customers such as the COSMIC website, download files, authentication and curation interface as well as new products, updates, features and innovations.

About You:

You must be a good communicator and able to work collaboratively with the COSMIC team and the Mutographs grand challenge team. By understanding the goals and needs of our team and customers, you will have the opportunity to creatively problem solve and design unique solutions for a global user-base of researchers, scientists and clinicians. This position will enable you to directly facilitate worldwide cancer research.

You should be comfortable working within Agile and a technology driven environment. You will understand how to conceptualise novel web-pages, design user-interfaces knowing what makes a good website and have experience in consuming APIs from a backend. Familiarity with the latest ReactJS version and ECMAScript 6+ is important.

Having an eye for good design is very important. With guidance from the Principal/Senior Developer, you should be able to design, document UI using tools like Adobe XD and implement it via CSS3/HTML5 to improve existing software products. Any experience with NextJS, Docker, TailwindCSS, NodeJS, Python or Django is preferred but not essential.

We actively encourage candidates who want to expand their skills, knowledge and interests as a Junior developer and you’ll be working under the guidance of a Principal/Senior Software Developer. You will join a multidisciplinary, committed and supportive team with the opportunity to work on innovative products that make a real difference to patients around the world.


You will support the world’s key cancer genomics resource, COSMIC (Catalogue of Somatic Mutations of Cancer), and our collaboration with the Mutographs Cancer Grand Challenge. http://cancer.sanger.ac.uk/cosmic & https://cancergrandchallenges.org/teams/mutographs. COSMIC is the key information source in global human cancer research. We exist to speed up the field of precision oncology so that every cancer journey can be tailored, accurate, and precise. We do this by streamlining and simplifying genomics data analysis for better prevention, diagnosis, and treatment research.

To achieve our vision, we're growing rapidly in content, scope and value. This role is due to the evolution and expansion of our web services and products to enable this growth. We make a real difference to scientific research and to cancer patients around the world. More specifically to this role, we provide excellent opportunities to apply best practices in software development, we work supportively with each other with code-review & pair programming, and we use test-driven development in our delivery of code. We offer structured training with mentoring, courses and study-time to allow continual career development.

COSMIC is expanding its range of web applications which requires innovative front-end development using ReactJS, interactive UI designs, and understanding of RESTful APIs for both internal and external consumption. We apply containerisation and CICD deployments into cloud infrastructure.

COSMIC data is gathered from a variety of sources, from manual curation to structured repositories into our databases. This position will help provide new websites, generate interactive visualisations of curation data.

More about COSMIC: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6323903/

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Athena Swan
Job Logo - 2
Athena Swan
Salary per annum
34,460 to 40,939
Full Time, Part Time, Flexible Working
Full Time/Flexible working considered
Contract Type
Closing Date
31 August 2022
Job Reference

Essential Skills

Technical Skills:

  • A Degree in Computer Science, IT or equivalent industry experience 
  • A sound understanding of software lifecycle delivery and development methods 
  • Experience with JavaScript (ES6+) 
  • Experience with HTML5 and CSS3 
  • Experience conceptualising & designing web page designs 

Behavioural Skills:

  • Ability to work within a goal oriented team environment 
  • Demonstrable aptitude for logical problem solving and a positive and proactive attitude to learning and development 
  • Has initiative but listens to instructions and willing to seek clarification when required 
  • Enthusiastic approach to web development 
  • Ability to prioritise, manage own workload, and deliver agreed activities consistently on time 
  • Ability to understand issues within a code base and take guidance from Senior Developers to assist in the resolution 

Other information

Application Process:

Please apply with your CV and a Cover Letter addressing how you meet the criteria set out above and in the job description.

Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis and the role may close early if a successful appointment has been made.

Hybrid Working:

Our hybrid working environment means you can focus on being productive and part of the team while enjoying the benefits of the Genome Campus when you are on site.

About Us

The Wellcome Sanger Institute is a world leading genomics research centre. Our findings are used to improve health and to understand life on Earth.

Our benefits:

There’s an attractive benefits package on offer at the Wellcome Genome Campus. We appreciate the importance of achieving work-life balance and support this with a number of family and carer-friendly policies. Plus a flexible working policy for those who may wish to amend their working pattern or arrangement.
As well as the usual benefits you would expect, we go much further:

  • 25 days annual leave (extra 1 day to a maximum of 30 days for every year you work)
  • Auto-enrolment into a generous Group Defined Contribution Pension Scheme, with enhanced company contribution (for more information, see our Pensions page)
  • Up to 2 days annual paid volunteering leave
  • Up to 10 days paid Emergency Carers Leave per year
  • Family friendly environment including options for flexible and part-time working, an on-site Workplace Nursery salary Sacrifice Schemes for pre-school children and Summer holiday club
  • Life Assurance is accessible on day 1 for all 
  • Group Income Protection Scheme (if on a contract exceeding 12 months)
  • Enhanced maternity, parental and adoption leave
  • Access to substantial number of courses and training events onsite
  • Private Healthcare Scheme 
  • Eyecare and Dental payment plans
  • Concessions and discounts from our corporate perks site

Being part of the Wellcome Genome Campus you will be part of the beautiful working environment with an impressive range of benefits, services and facilities also including:

  • Free bus service to and from Campus, covering various routes around Cambridge, Saffron Walden and surrounding villages
  • A car-share initiative
  • Free parking
  • A number of on-site venues where you can meet, eat and socialise with colleagues
  • A thriving Sports and Social Club which provides members with subsidised access to a gym, tennis courts, sports hall, fitness classes and a vibrant social calendar of events

In 2020 we were awarded an Athena SWAN Silver Award. We will consider all individuals without discrimination and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees, where everyone can thrive.