SANSA is Hiring a Chief Data Systems Officer

Internship Opportunity

The South African National Space Agency (SANSA) is hiring a Chief Data Systems Officer at the Earth Observation Programme situated in Pretoria, Gauteng. The Chief Data Systems Officer will report to the Managing Director and will design and implement a high-performance computing environment and data management system aligned with global standards for Earth observation data that enables the storage, processing, discovery and access, archiving and curation of satellite data and derived information products acquired and developed by SANSA.

The position is open to individuals with the relevant skills, drive, competencies, and qualifications.


Requirements include but will not be limited to:

  • Design and implement an Earth observation Data Systems Strategy;
  • Design and manage a high-performance Earth observation Data Centre;
  • Data management;
  • Operationalisation and performance of Data Systems;
  • Risk management and compliance; and
  • People management.


The ideal candidate must have the following qualifications and experience:

  • A Master’s degree in Systems Engineering, Computer Science, Computer Systems or related qualification;
  • 10 years as a Senior Systems Engineer, Software Engineer or similar experience;
  • + 5 as head of technical systems team (management position);
  • Experience in agile methodology, DevOps and scrum will be an added advantage; and
  • Knowledge of managing a hybrid computing environment, i.e. mixture of on-premise and cloud resources.

Key Requirements

  • Knowledge of modern system design architectures (e.g. Containerisation and Orchestration (Kubernetes);
  • Management of hybrid data centre, managing a mixture of on-premise and cloud-based resources;
    • Understanding of Computer Networks and Security
    • Hardware virtualization and clustering technologies
    • Storage systems – short-term and long-term storage systems (backup technologies)
    • Systems hosting infrastructure and life-cycle management
    • Applications and integration architectures
  • Knowledge of Cloud computing architectures and services (Storage and Compute) and preferably AWS;
  • Experience leading a software development team;
  • Preferably, having a solid software development background will be beneficial, using any modern programming languages (e.g Python, Java, Javascript);
  • Experience with the SDLC (Software Development Life-Cycle) and modern ways of working, such as leading fast-paced teams by applying DevOps (XOps) and Agile Methodologies; and
  • Ability to lead a team of software developers and be hands-on when the situation requires – leading by example.

Applicants are to note that the appointment will be on a level commensurate with qualifications and experience. Furthermore, background verification, including criminal records, credit checks, security clearances, qualification and citizenship checks, competency assessment, and psychometric testing, may form part of the selection process.

In addition, SANSA reserves the right to not make an appointment. SANSA also subscribes to the principles of Employment Equity and welcomes applications from all persons with disabilities and other under-represented designated groups. Candidates will receive preference under this.

Applications will close on 04 August 2022; if you meet the above requirements and are interested, kindly send your detailed CV and cover letter here.  Only shortlisted candidates will receive feedback. Furthermore, applicants may assume their applications were unsuccessful if they do not receive feedback four weeks after the closing date.


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