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Director of Robotics



Austin, TX, USA
Posted on Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Apptronik is building robots for the real world to improve human quality of life and to help solve the ever-increasing labor shortage problem. Our team has been building some of the most advanced robots on the planet for years, dating back to the DARPA Robotics Challenge. We apply our expertise across the full robotics stack to some of the most important and impactful problems our society faces, and expect our products and technology to change the world for the better. We value passion, creativity, and collaboration to help us overcome existing technological barriers in the industry to create truly innovative products.

You will join a team developing state-of-the-art general-purpose robots designed to operate in human spaces and with human tools. It is designed to work alongside humans, mobilize to human spaces, and manipulate the world around it.

We’re seeking an experienced Director of Robotics to lead our team of Controls engineers towards fieldable robots. This is a unique opportunity to have a large impact at a high growth start-up. If you thrive in a fast-paced environment, with a successful track record of applying state-of-the-art control algorithms on hardware, we’d love to speak with you. This person will report directly to the CTO and will engage regularly with company leadership to affect strategic decisions.


  • Lead efforts to optimize robotic system performance, including motion planning, trajectory optimization, and state estimation. Expert knowledge in humanoid robot control areas such as:
    • Whole body control
    • Model predictive control
    • RL and imitation learning
  • Provide strategic leadership and vision for the robotics division, aligning with company goals and objectives. Develop and communicate a clear roadmap for the development and deployment of robotic systems.
  • Lead the development of innovative robotic solutions, from conceptualization to commercialization, across various industries. Direct research efforts to explore new technologies, algorithms, and methodologies to enhance robotic capabilities.
  • Collaborate closely with product management and hardware design engineering teams to understand customer needs and market requirements. Translate customer requirements into technical specifications and product features.
  • Grow, manage, and motivate a high-caliber technical team
  • Translate strategic company goals into concrete engineering milestones
  • Set software engineering roadmap and priorities, and efficiently run day-to-day operations
  • Develop and implement best practices and procedures to ensure that quality standards are met and consistent
  • Develop engineering talent and career progression, establishing a high-performance culture
  • Mentor and train leaders within the robotics team
  • Foster an environment of innovation and execution utilizing industry best practices
  • Oversee the development of system tests to quantify algorithm performance in hardware
  • Deliver production grade software for our products and maintain it over time


  • PHD degree in robotics
  • 7+ years experience
  • Recent working experience in production-grade C++ software design and development
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • A successful track record of:
    • Leading a team of developers / engineers
    • Bringing products through the complete development life cycle by maintaining disciplined project schedules, detailed documentation, effective communications, and meeting deadlines in the context of a fast-paced entrepreneurial environment
    • Consistent delivery of high-quality software that moves the company towards achieving short- and long-term objectives
  • Experience with software engineering best practices and processes:
    • Agile software development
    • Design reviews, code reviews
    • DevOps, CI/CD, testing

Nice to Have:

  • Experience with any of the following:
    • Applied machine learning
    • UIX /product development
    • Perception systems
    • Infrastructure for fleet management


  • Competitive base w/ benefits
  • Highly motivating equity incentive package
  • Hybrid work schedule (i.e. work from home in some capacity)
  • Flexible work hours policy
  • Professional development opportunities
  • Unlimited Paid Time Off (PTO)
  • 401k plan

*This is a direct hire. Please, no outside Agency solicitations.

Apptronik provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws.