Requisition Number: 2023-02-01644-0160-001
Job Title: Lead Data Architect
City: New York
State: NY
Shift: Monday - Friday, 9:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Hours: 35

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP is one of the world’s leading international law firms. The Firm was established in 1884 and has more than 1,000 lawyers. Headquartered in New York with offices in Beijing, Brussels, Hong Kong, Houston, London, Los Angeles, Palo Alto, São Paulo, Tokyo and Washington, D.C., the Firm provides coordinated legal advice and transactional capability to clients around the globe. Cross-border finance, banking and bank regulation, mergers and acquisitions, securities issuance and regulation, project and asset based finance, real estate, asset management, joint ventures, taxation, litigation and dispute resolution are important aspects of the Firm’s practice.

Lead Data Architect

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Description/Job Summary

Simpson Thacher is seeking a Lead Data Architect to head their data modernization initiative, helping the Firm enhance the ways in which it captures, organizes, provisions and capitalizes on data through the enterprise.

The Lead Data Architect is a hands-on technical role which will determine technical approaches, write and review code, oversee engineering resources, and provide key input on strategic plans to drive both Data Architecture and Data Engineering forward within the Firm.. The Lead Data Architect will design and deliver on premise, cloud and hybrid solutions. This role will work closely with the Firm’s Data Analytics team and collaborate with departments across the Firm to effectuate change.

This role will act as a trusted technical advisor and strategic thought leader to the Firm. Given the nature of this function, the Lead Data Architect will provide input and guidance in various areas adjacent to data architecture and data engineering, including appropriate usage and governance, privacy and security, information management, analytics and visualization, and natural language processing.

The Lead Data Architect will join a growing function and have the opportunity to lead, guide and mentor others on the team.


Strategy, Planning and Leadership

  • Contribute to a vision and strategy that unlocks the potential of the Firm’s data
  • Lead the evolution of the Firm’s data environment, developing and maintaining a roadmap and a set of goals to drive data architecture and data engineering forward, enhancing the ways in which the Firm collects, stores and surfaces data for downstream use
  • Provide leadership and guidance on design and management of data for consuming applications, formulating best practices and organizing processes for data management, governance and usage
  • Develop and maintain architectural plans for individual data products and data services, ensuring alignment with business needs, as well as enterprise architecture strategies and standards
  • Create end-to-end technical plans for translating logical designs into physical databases, and map out how the data will flow through successive stages and transformations 
  • Create short-term, tactical solutions that build upon each other to achieve long-term objectives and move the overall data architecture and engineering roadmap forward
  • Pair with Data Analytics, the Director of Information Governance and other functions to advance data governance, stewardship, and the frameworks for managing data across the enterprise (e.g. data catalog)
  • Collaborate with key stakeholders, product development groups and software vendors, applying creative thinking and approaches to determine technical data solutions that further business goals and align with corporate technology strategies, while accounting for performance, reliability, scalability, usability, security, continuity, flexibility, and cost
  • Oversee the work of data engineers and the data architect, to ensure efforts align and projects move forward in a coordinated manner
  • Provide mentorship and help team growth and advancement, especially related to technical command and skill
  • Establish methods and procedures for tracking data quality, maintainability, completeness, redundancy, compliance and improvement
  • When needed, select and partner with vendors to augment resources and extend capabilities
  • Recognize and identify areas where existing policies and procedures require change or where new ones are needed

Project Related Deliverables and Tasks

  • Maintain and extend our current data environment
  • Deploy data pipelines to integrate new sources of data
  • Select and implement the appropriate tools, software, applications and systems to support tactical and strategic data needs
  • Oversee the mapping of data sources, data movement, and data transformation, with the goal of ensuring quality and consistency across the enterprise
  • Design, write and review the code required to move data across environments and transform / ready it for consumption
  • Collaborate with project leads, business unit leaders and consultants for all projects involving enterprise data
  • Create and maintain enterprise data models, metadata policies and procedures
  • Work with business leaders and Data Analytics to design, update and maintain key reference data / lists
  • Provide technical recommendations and engage with architects, SMEs and other stakeholders throughout the solution/data architecture and implementation lifecycle and recommend effective solutions to develop high-performance and highly scalable data solutions
  • Address data-related problems in regards to systems integration, compatibility, and multiple-platform integration
  • Work with the Networking and Infrastructure teams within IT to ensure adequate hardware specifications, connectivity and environment access for data solutions
  • Develop and implement testing criteria in order to ensure the fidelity and performance of the data architecture
  • Document the project and programs data architecture and environment in order to maintain a current and accurate view of the larger data picture
  • Identify and develop opportunities for data reuse, migration, or retirement and platform upgrades
  • Communicate with project teams in a timely manner and escalate issues & risks appropriately
  • Other duties as assigned 

Required Skills

  • 10 or more years of relevant experience required, preferably with 3 or more in an analogous role or with analogous responsibilities
  • Expertise in data architecture, data strategy and roadmap development for large and complex organizations
  • Expertise implementing and maintaining large-scale, end-to-end data management and analytics solutions for multiple business units
  • Expertise with OLAP and data warehouse dimensional modeling techniques, Star & Snowflake schemas, modeling Type-2 / slowly changing dimensions and role-playing dimensions, dimensional hierarchies, and data classification
  • Expertise in data quality, data profiling, data governance, data security, metadata management, master data management, data archival and data migration strategies using appropriate tools
  • Technical background in data with deep understanding of issues in multiple areas such as data acquisition and processing, data management, information security engineering, distributed processing, and high availability is required
  • Expertise with schema design and development, relational databases and SQL
  • Expertise with ETL (Extract-Transform-Load) tools (e.g. SSIS, Data Factory)
  • Experience with pulling data from and posting data to REST and GraphQL APIs
  • Hands-on experience with DevOps, especially as applies to evolving an enterprise data environment
  • Experience with data application / platform instrumentation, measurement, log data processing, and monitoring
  • Experience in data and text mining, statistics, machine learning and model development is a plus
  • Hands-on experience with business intelligence / interactive reporting tools a plus (e.g. PowerBI)
  • Knowledge of cloud computing infrastructure and considerations for scalable, distributed systems
  • Knowledge of NoSQL platforms (e.g. key-value stores, graph databases, RDF triple stores)
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a fast-paced and changing environment with short deadlines, interruptions, and multiple tasks / projects occurring simultaneously across resources
  • Self-starter who is able to focus independently on assigned work and pair collaboratively with team members and other business representatives for joint efforts
  • Strong problem solving, influencing, communication, and presentation skills
  • Maintains awareness of relevant advancements / innovation, within the legal industry and outside

Preferred Skills

  • Hands-on programming experience, with specific understanding and skill in Python, C#, Java and SQL.

Required Education

  • BS required

Preferred Education

  • Master’s preferred


Salary Information

The estimated base salary range for this position is $230k to $310k at the time of posting. The actual salary offered will depend on a variety of factors, including without limitation, the qualifications of the individual applicant for the position, years of relevant experience, level of education attained, certifications or other professional licenses held, and if applicable, the location in which the applicant lives and/or from which they will be performing the job. This role is exempt meaning it is not overtime pay eligible.

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Simpson Thacher & Bartlett is committed to a collegial work environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity. The Firm prohibits discrimination or harassment based upon race, color, religion, gender, age, national origin, citizenship status, disability, marital or partnership status, sexual orientation, protected veteran’s status or any other legally protected status. “Gender” includes actual or perceived sex, a person’s gender identity, self-image, appearance, behavior or expression, whether or not that gender identity, self-image, appearance, behavior or expression is different from that traditionally associated with the legal sex assigned to that person at birth. This Policy pertains to every aspect of an individual’s relationship with the Firm, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, compensation, benefits, training and development, promotion, transfer, discipline, termination, and all other privileges, terms and conditions of employment.