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Software Engineer - Algorithmic Graphic Design

Sydney – Full-time

About Us:

At Canva we are revolutionising the way people design. Our goal is to become THE design tool for anything published on the web and we believe we are only 1% of the way there. Our team is composed of the some of the brightest minds in the business with the motivation to create something amazing and disrupt the way design is thought about and created. Since launching in 2013 we have been on an exponential growth trajectory. To date we are sitting at roughly 55 million monthly active users and are still seeing that number increase. We are one of the worlds fastest growing companies and we have only accomplished a fraction of what is possible! Only a hand full of companies can say they have grown as quickly as we have and the sky is the limit here at Canva.

About the Role:

How do you teach a computer to choose fonts and colors, change a layout, or make artistic recommendations? To solve problems such as these, engineering must be tightly interwoven with a knowledge of UX and graphic design. If you’re an engineer who enjoys thinking in multiple domains, this role is for you.

We are looking for strong programming ability, creative problem solving, user empathy, and exceptional learning aptitude. Our team includes engineers with professional design experience and data scientists, but we are open to anyone naturally suited to combining engineering, product, and design.

Knowledge in such areas as machine learning, color science, data analysis, and metaheuristics are valued but not necessary.


  • Primarily building web based features with Typescript, but may need to work with other languages and environments
  • Collaborate with product managers, product designers, data scientists, and user researchers, while also learning/practicing your craft
  • Driving projects from inception to completion
  • Keeping your work aligned with real user problems and strategic technical goals
  • Running quantitative and qualitative experiments with the assistance of a data analyst 
  • Contributing to the team’s product roadmap
  • Build efficient and reusable abstractions
  • Identify and address performance bottlenecks
  • Participate in design and code reviews


  • A user-centered approach to problem solving
  • Strong creative problem solving with algorithms
  • Able to apply both divergent and convergent thinking to open ended problems
  • Strong aptitude for programming
  • Strong knowledge of JavaScript and web technologies – most of our work is frontend

Bonus Experience

  • Knowledge of data science or analysis
  • Knowledge of color science
  • Experience with graphic design
  • Experience with product design or user research

Recent Projects Include

  • Using color science, heuristics, and constraint optimization to choose colors for vector images being added to the page
  • A genetic algorithm for changing designs (ask us for details!)
  • Transferring text between unrelated designs, using a random forest classifier to determine the role of text elements, and heuristics to style and reflow text
  • Using clustering algorithms (e.g., mean shift, k-means) to generate color palettes and font combinations from existing designs
  • A web based tool for generating multiple designs
  • Algorithms for changing the layout of designs
  • Secret things we can’t talk about yet!


  • Competitive salary, plus equity options
  • Flexible working hours, we value work-life balance
  • In-house chefs that cook delicious breakfast and lunch for us each day
  • Gym and yoga facilities onsite
  • Generous parental leave policy
  • Pet friendly offices including a social area, unisex toilets
  • Sponsored social clubs and team events
  • Fun and quirky celebrations
  • Relocation budget provided and visa application fees covered