Software Team Lead - Platform, Houdini

Production Technology, Software Product Development London, United Kingdom Western Site's (LON/VAN/MTL/TOR), United Kingdom


Position at DNEG

Software Team Lead – Platform, Houdini



The DNEG FX & CG Generalist departments primarily utilise SideFX’s Houdini to produce world class VFX and digital environments. Leveraging proceduralism and efficiency, the data sets produced by these departments push the boundaries of complexity, scalability and artistry.


The developers working alongside these departments help to produce both artist facing, and backend tooling to assist with streamlining workflows, adding new functionality to Houdini, and solving critical production issues.


As a software developer within the FX and Generalist teams you will be working across the ecosystem of Houdini, primarily developing using the HOM, or using the HDK when and if required. You will also be integrating Houdini into the larger DNEG pipeline, and will need to produce tools that fit seamlessly into the native Houdini experience. 


UX and respecting user requirements will be key to the success of this work. Clear examples and documentation will be required to communicate how your tools function to users. A passion for ongoing improvement and user adoption of your tools is also a must. Software developers at DNEG strive to produce testable, maintainable software written to DNEG’s coding standards.


A deep understanding of Houdini is not a prerequisite for success in this role, however familiarity with SOPs, ROPs and LOPs is desirable. DNEG also desires specialists that have mastered a specific context of Houdini, and can act as an authority on that domain.


As a Software Team Lead, your activities will be a balance of software development and team management. You will be a major contributor to the development team: for certain products within your domain you will adopt the role of Product Owner; for other products you will work closely with the Product Owner and provide them with technical insight. You will engage with stakeholders for your product line to understand requirements, allowing you to shape roadmaps that service the Feature Animation, Television and VFX divisions. With the aid of your team, you will lead the translation of those requirements into user stories with clear acceptance criteria and timescales. Your energy and enthusiasm will be vital in maintaining momentum, ensuring your team is continuously delivering outstanding technology to artists and TDs, and partnering with the Software Development Manager, Project Managers and Trainers to evangelise your products.


You will provide leadership to your team through coaching and mentorship. This will include participating in peer reviews of solution designs and related code. Together with the Software Development Manager you will also take an active role in maintaining high standards of software quality within the team by establishing best practices and habits.




Must have: 

  • Degree in Computer Science, Engineering, or relevant professional experience .
  • Programming experience in Python and/or C++
  • Experience with HOM, VEX and/or the HDK.
  • Experience of software development in a Linux environment.
  • Experience with source control systems and developing within a team.


Nice to have: 

  • Knowledge of VFX, FX, and world building techniques using SideFX’s Houdini.
  • Experience with libraries like Pixar's USD, Qt, Pybind11/Boost.Python.
  • Experience with build systems.
  • Experience with other DCCs used in VFX like Maya, Nuke, Mari, the Adobe suite.



A note on Equal Opportunities

We would not be able to produce award-winning work without our Production Technology department, which is committed to nurturing an inclusive, diverse and exciting workplace. Our teams have a variety of backgrounds and originate from a number of different countries, working across the globe at the forefront of technology in the industry.   

About Us
We are DNEG, one of the world’s leading visual effects and animation companies for the creation of award-winning feature film, television, and multiplatform content. We employ more than 10,000 people with worldwide offices and studios across North America (Los Angeles, Montréal, Toronto, Vancouver), Europe (London), Asia (Bangalore, Mohali, Chennai, Mumbai) and Australia (Sydney).