The sports tech entertainment company betting on your future
DraftKings, the Boston-based technology firm opened a Dublin office in 2019 and is looking for talent
Jack Murphy, DraftKings: “At DraftKings Dublin, we are focused on recruiting premier engineering talent from Dublin’s tech hub as the team continues to innovate and refine one of the world’s favourite gaming and betting experiences.”
Founded in 2012 by fantasy sports fans Jason Robins, Matthew Kalish, and Paul Liberman, DraftKings is a Nasdaq-listed technology focused company and digital sports entertainment leader which employs over 2,300 people worldwide, with a new engineering centre of excellence in Dublin.
The company aims to build the best, most trusted, and most customer-centric games for fans and partners by developing and offering innovative and entertaining products which transform the manner in which people experience and enjoy sports.
DraftKings offers three main products to consumers in a variety of markets around the world: fantasy sports contests which can be run on a daily or even hourly basis; DraftKings Sportsbook which allows customers to place bets on sports games in a number of US states; and DraftKings Casino, in which players access popular online casino games. In addition, DraftKings powers sports betting and digital gaming products for business clients in multiple jurisdictions around the globe.
The technology involved in creating these products was built in-house by some of the brightest software engineering minds in the world. Every day, they tackle challenges at the intersection of digital gaming and sports entertainment and work in areas such as artificial intelligence, analytics, cybersecurity, data, and machine learning.
“Engineers at DraftKings build products that stand tall against the non-stop nature of sports, processing millions of transactions in fantasy and gaming products each week, with incredible traffic during popular matchups,” says Paul Liberman, co-founder and president, global product and technology.
“Our engineers have a true passion for problem solving, and their contributions allow sports fans to become closer to the games they love.”
In November 2019, the company announced its decision to open a Dublin office. According to Dublin site lead Jack Murphy, DraftKings chose Dublin as a location for several reasons, including the city’s rich talent pool in technology and gaming expertise.
“At DraftKings Dublin, we are focused on recruiting premier engineering talent from Dublin’s tech hub as the team continues to innovate and refine one of the world’s favourite gaming and betting experiences – all while serving customers and partners around the clock,” says Murphy.
Our engineers have a true passion for problem solving
“We relocated our director of engineering from Boston along with two senior engineers to set up the development team here in Dublin,” Murphy adds.
"It's no secret that Dublin has a conducive environment and rich talent pool in tech, and after spending five years working at the DraftKings global headquarters in Boston, I relocated to help launch the new engineering centre of excellence in Dublin,” says DraftKings Sportsbook director of engineering Dan Kesack. “I'm delighted to bring my experience to our new team members in Ireland.”
Murphy explains that the mission will expand along with the size of the team. “We will be adding front-end development in the near future,” he says. “We have already hired a mobile development manager. Front-end and mobile will be key for us next year. User experience and site reliability will be added as well. We have also started building out our data engineering team and are looking to add new teams from other areas of the business.”
Much of the Dublin office’s activities will involve building upon the existing product. “Sportsbook was created in 2018 so it’s not that old,” says Murphy. “DraftKings is a very innovative company and is constantly adding features and bringing out new releases of its products. That will drive a lot of growth in Dublin.”
The pathway from back to front end is very important. “You need strong engineers who understand the system at a very detailed level,” he explains. “Building upon that understanding our engineers are able to work on areas like mobile development on the front end while ensuring that new features are compatible with the underlying technology. You can get situations with some products where new features can be slow to work and sometimes not work at all because of software conflicts. That doesn’t happen with DraftKings products.”
That’s just one part of the challenge. The other element is the sheer volume of transactions and variables in terms of wagers and events which the system has to contend with. “The system has to be highly resilient and capable of running at very high volumes with millions of transactions a day,” he continues.
“It also has to be able to deal with massive spikes in transactions before, during and after events. For example, if the star player on a team gets injured just before an event that is likely to generate a huge surge in activity. It also has to be able to handle multiple payment providers and different rules and regulations regarding deposits and payments in different jurisdictions.”
The need for a frictionless user experience adds another layer of complexity. “We have to make sure people have a really good first impression and a seamless experience so that they stay on the platform. It’s a bit like what Richard Feynman said about simplicity. It is sad that the success in producing something simple, is that the effort and intelligence required to achieve that simplicity is hidden by that simplicity.”
Working at DraftKings, Dublin
“Not everyone here is a sports nut,” Murphy points out. “They are highly talented engineers dealing with really complicated technical challenges. A lot of people are attracted by the scale and complexity of the technical side.”
Another attraction is the DraftKings culture. “We held the Dublin office opening celebration on March 10th and were locked down shortly after,” Murphy recalls. “Most of our staff have never set foot in the office or even seen it. We spent a lot of time setting up everyone to be able to work from home and we ensure they are supported both personally and professionally. We hold wellbeing events all the time, for example, and recently had a physio session run by a local company. DraftKings Dublin is a great place for people to grow and advance their careers.”
To discover the current openings at DraftKings Dublin, visit careers.draftkings.com