Indigo: Senior Manager, Automation Engineering
500 Rutherford Ave, Suite 201
Boston, MA 02129

Employee Testimonials

Jesse Deardorff
Cassandra Ball
Trudi Baker


Indigo improves grower profitability, environmental sustainability, and consumer health through the use of natural microbiology and digital technologies. Utilizing beneficial plant microbes and agronomic insights, Indigo works with growers to sustainably produce high quality harvests. The company then connects growers and buyers directly to bring these harvests to market. Working across the supply chain, Indigo is forwarding its mission of harnessing nature to help farmers sustainably feed the planet. The company is headquartered in Boston, MA, with additional offices in Memphis, TN, Research Triangle Park, NC, Sydney, Australia, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and So Paulo, Brazil.

The role of Director, Automation Engineering will be focused on driving automation solutions to speed and improve R&D at Indigo. As a member of the BioInnovation team, they will be tasked with rapidly creating a strategic automation roadmap, building a high-performing cross-functional engineering team, and immediately executing on key projects and priorities. The ideal candidate will be experienced, empathetic with end users from a variety of backgrounds, capable of using automation engineering to enhance processes and data capture throughout R&D and drive the future of agriculture.


  • Obtain a deep understanding of all current stage gate processes and key stakeholders within R&D and their automation needs in order to build an automation strategy and living roadmap for future iteration
  • Create a hiring plan to build a world-class automation team
  • Coordinate with facilities as-needed to find space for new automation machinery and in-house construction
  • Reduce FTE load of at least 5-10 assays and increase data collection at least 3x
  • Collaborate with Program Management Team to increase capacity for FTEs to work on other projects
  • Collaborate within BioInnovation team on machine learning and data capture and integration

Understands and embodies our mission & core values:

  • Excited by Indigos mission; believes that Indigo can fundamentally change the agriculture industry; can clearly articulate passion for our mission and values
  • Optimistic and innovative; solution-oriented; shows no signs of cynicism
  • Will be widely viewed as someone who personifies our core values, is committed to them, and leans on them when making decisions. Specifically:
    • Demonstrates a track record of high integrity - doing the right thing, owning mistakes, conducting oneself honestly
    • Values, communicates and interacts with others with high levels of transparency and respect
  • Collaborates well across functions; creates an inspiring and collegial work environment


  • An adaptable and quick learner in new dynamics; not afraid to ask questions
  • Consistently able to see and communicate the big picture of a project
  • Collaborative and empathetic with end users
  • Able to quickly metabolize needs and information from different teams to create an efficient plan of action
  • Skilled at breaking down large automation goals into smaller custom solutions that integrate with existing process
  • Thinks outside the box and inspires similar thinking
  • Extremely process drivenable to effectively and strategically troubleshoot design-build-test cycles with business priorities in mind
  • Excellent at managing a diverse and multidisciplinary engineering team, and excited about mentorship and teambuilding
  • Passionate and nuanced advocate for lab automation
  • Effective communication and group coordination skills


  • Graduate degree in Engineering preferred
  • Minimum of 6 years of relevant work experience, ideally in biotechnology or pharmaceuticals
  • Experience building custom end-to-end hardware/software integrated systems to automate biological experimentation
  • Experience with lab robotics on a large scale (machine vision, liquid handlers, rapid prototyping) and control systems integration (Scriptiva, CNC, PID)
  • Demonstrated track record of gathering customer needs and providing solutions to fit gathering feedback at each step
  • Experience building and leading a team, mentoring and developing direct reports, and collaborating cross-functionally
  • Experience working with wet lab biology and biologists
  • Basic understanding of biological and chemical sciences
  • Experience scaling a pipeline or running a scaled pipeline
  • Wide external network (firms, vendors, etc)
  • Familiarity with CAD (AutoCAD, Solidworks)

Employee Testimonials

Jesse Deardorff
Jesse Deardorff

Our plan is focused on the growers and helping them achieve maximum profitability using a unique set of tools. On top of offering a dynamic product, developing relationships and partnerships with growers will be key to achieving our goals.

Cassandra Ball
Cassandra Ball

I love the lab culture of Indigo. It's great being surrounded by both hard-working and fun-loving people. Most of our experiments are challenging and having the support of coworkers throughout the day really makes it fun for me.

Trudi Baker
Trudi Baker

From the early days when the whole company consisted of less than 20 people, I remember EVERYONE would gather for lively brainstorming sessions, the founder of the company, bench scientists, data scientists, lab techs, an attorney - everyone participated and listened and learned from each other's experiences and opinions. Today Indigo is much larger, but this spirit of open communication and collaboration is still strong. We collaborate through our everyday work, through software like our online innovation exchange where we bounce ideas off each other, and through "hands-on" brainstorming sessions where we learn a new assay and some of the points which are most challenging and can share ideas about how to make it more efficient.