PHP developer

We’re looking for a flexible PHP developer with a passion for maintainable, secure, well-structured code and good user experience to join our friendly team. You’ll implement HTML/CSS templates developed by colleagues into flexible WordPress themes and custom plugins for our clients, and work on extending and improving existing clients’ sites and our own PHP platforms for online learning and simulation.

What’s life at Helpful like? Read about working here and our story.


Essential skills:

  • intermediate ability with: PHP, JavaScript (including jQuery), HTML, and CSS
  • versioning technologies such as Git
  • interacting with RESTful APIs
  • debugging your own code and that of others
  • maintaining a good standard of coding and adhering to the same conventions as the rest of the team

Desirable skills:

  • developing for WordPress
  • JavaScript frameworks such as Vue and React
  • MySQL
  • understanding of performance considerations
  • understanding of security considerations and best practices
  • ability to communicate professionally with technical and non-technical colleagues and clients


  • understanding of LAMP stack and/or experience managing it
  • experience with WP CLI
  • bash scripting
  • contributing to the broader web development community

You’ll also need:

  • a portfolio of sites you’ve worked on, and a Github (or similar) repository
  • clear communication skills and excellent written and spoken English
  • eligibility to work in the UK (we won’t be sponsoring visas for this role)


You have professional experience in developer role, and bring a common sense attitude to your development: you’re naturally on the side of the user, thinking ahead to future support needs and changes, and able to prioritise.

Our people are what makes Helpful special. Communication is crucial to the smooth running of the company, and we value communication skills above all – being able to share constructive feedback with colleagues over chat or email, or clearly explain your thinking to a client on a call or in a meeting.

As open source software is the cornerstone of our business, we encourage all of our employees to contribute to open source projects, and we support some of the key tools we depend on. If you’ve worked on or supported open source software, we’ll be interested to hear about it.

The role

This is a hands-on coding role, with a wide variety of work, nice clients and relaxed colleagues. It’s a good learning opportunity, but we’ll expect you to have real examples of work you’ve completed to show us as part of the recruitment process.

Day to day, you’ll work with colleagues on new website builds as well as supporting our wide range of clients’ sites. You might be building a plugin to fetch data from an API, plugging new page templates into a theme, or translating a set of HTML templates into a custom theme following the WordPress coding standards and optimising for performance.

You’ll work with designers, front-end devs and project managers to understand a client’s brief, build prototypes and take part in user research sessions. You’ll have a key role in projects within our small team, with real responsibility for delivering good quality code and justifying your recommendations to clients, so we build the right things and build them right.


Central London (Barbican/St Paul’s) with occasional travel. Primarily office-based, but as a partly remote team this role could be up to 50% remote within 6 months.

Hours of work:

Full time, 40 hours/week. We're open to part time job-share working and flexible working patterns.

Contract term:

Minimum 12 months, potential to make permanent dependent on performance and business growth. Probationary period: 3 months

Salary & benefits:

  • Salary dependent on experience, £30-40k. This is a junior to middleweight role.
  • Company pension with 5% company contribution
  • Company-funded mobile/data contract
  • Flexible and reasonable hours
  • 25 days’ holiday plus public holidays
  • Home office setup budget to ensure you can work productively from home
  • Up to date hardware and software to work with

We offer a range of development opportunities including:

  • access to paid online learning
  • access to relevant industry events
  • regular friendly, constructive feedback
  • opportunities to gain experience beyond your normal day-to-day role by working with other members of the team

Closing date:

Open until end of November 2018 or until we find the right person

About us

We build creative, interesting, useful things with WordPress – from helping scientists study Antarctica to engaging young people with career opportunities or showcasing wedding venues to potential customers. Friendly, open communication is at the heart of our culture internally and with clients, and you’ll be a key participant in catch-up calls to review a Trello board, on Slack chats to scope a new feature, and in meetings or screencasts to demonstrate prototypes or examples you’ve created. We have mature client relationships, a relaxed working culture, and a team-oriented approach to managing projects including lean methods, user-centred design and version control.

How to apply:

No agencies or freelancers please.

Please send:

  • your CV
  • links to your portfolio (and code repository if you have one)
  • a covering email describing your experience and the kind of role you’re looking for


If you have what we’re looking for, we’ll invite you to a phone interview initially. If we both agree it’s worth taking it further at that point, we’ll pay you to complete a small piece of work in your own time, and ask you to take us through it at a face to face interview, where we’ll also talk about your work and experience.