Open Roles Within Our Portfolio

Head of Applied Science



Posted on Friday, September 8, 2023

A home is the biggest investment most people make, and yet, it doesn’t come with a manual. That's why we’re building the only app homeowners need to effortlessly manage their homes — knowing what to do, when to do it, and who to hire. With Thumbtack, millions of people care for what matters most, and pros earn billions of dollars through our platform. And as one of the fastest-growing companies in a $600B+ industry — we must be doing something right.

We are driven by a common goal and the deep satisfaction that comes from knowing our work supports local economies, helps small businesses grow, and brings homeowners peace of mind. We’re seeking people who continually put our purpose first: advocating for pros and customers, embracing change, and choosing teamwork every day.

At Thumbtack, we're creating a new era of home care. If making an impact and the chance to do good inspires you, join us. Imagine what we’ll build together.

Thumbtack by the Numbers

  • Available nationwide in all 3,143 U.S. counties
  • 75 million+ projects started on Thumbtack
  • About 4 million customers in the last 12 months
  • Pros earn billions on our platform
  • About 10 million 5-star reviews for our stellar pros
  • 1000+ employees and $3.2 billion valuation (June, 2021)

About the Applied Science team:

At Thumbtack, the Applied Science team is responsible for a wide variety of problems spanning machine learning, statistics, and computer science:

  • Characterize marketplace dynamics. Thumbtack’s marketplaces consist of thousands of active markets across our service categories and U.S. cities. Via exploratory data analysis and experimental design, our team works to understand trends and behaviors within these markets.
  • Improve customer and service provider matching. Matching and optimization algorithms are fundamental to Thumbtack’s product: we now service millions of matches per week. Identifying better matches between customers and service providers has an incredible impact on the experience of customers and professionals transacting on our platform.
  • Model complex relationships in the presence of many confounding factors. Predictive modeling problems are everywhere across our product. Our team works to scope, design and implement machine learning models to support Thumbtack’s product.

Role Summary

We are seeking a Head of Applied Science who will leverage data science and applied science to build a more compelling product for Home Owners and Pros, and scale Thumbtack’s business. Reporting to the CTO, you will be responsible for growth initiatives, demand & supply optimization, dynamic pricing, personalized home care solutions. You will drive the Data and Machine Learning strategy and leverage generative AI such as LLMs to bring a step function change in Thumbtack’s offerings.

To be successful, you need to have a deep expertise in machine learning, optimization and building data products. You are a passionate, enthusiastic and experienced leader who will collaborate with key leaders, peers and stakeholders, to develop priorities, roadmaps, and deliver game changing ML & AI products and capabilities with a relentless focus on engineering and operational excellence.

You must be a builder of high performing teams, a talent magnet with a track record of talent development, and - above all - a values-first leader. ​​


  • Lead and inspire a high-performing team of Applied Scientists and Machine Learning Engineers and Leaders
  • Grow and coach talent, acting as a talent magnet to attract, nurture and retain talent.
  • Be a thought leader and ensure AI/ML & Applied Science will influence key product and engineering decisions.
  • Set strategy and direction for AI/ML & Applied Science Product & Engineering and its organizational culture and leadership
  • Partner with key stakeholders and business leaders to establish and drive measurable success criteria for applied science implementations and execution of the strategies to realize the full potential of the applied science discipline
  • Partner with the technology leadership team to create a long-term vision and develop a roadmap of applied science projects
  • Develop new capabilities to deliver business solutions by applying applied science algorithms

What you’ll need

If you don't think you meet all of the criteria below but still are interested in the job, please apply. Nobody checks every box, and we're looking for someone excited to join the team.

  • Master's or Ph.D. degree in Computer Science, Machine Learning, Statistics, Mathematics, or a related field
  • 10+ years of organizational leadership experience, including experience collaborating with teams and executive leadership.
  • 5+ years of experience building and applying ML models to solve complex problems for large-scale applications.
  • Experience in optimization, machine learning, and statistical analysis
  • Strong problem-solving skills and ability to work with large and complex datasets
  • Aptitude for driving impact at scale, and recruiting and managing high-performing technical leaders.
  • Commitment to building inclusive teams and team culture.

Bonus points if you have

  • Experience at a growth-stage consumer tech company.
  • Experience with a marketplace business.

Thumbtack is a virtual-first company, meaning you can live and work from any one of our approved locations across the United States, Canada or the Philippines.* Learn more about our virtual-first working model here.

For candidates living in San Francisco / Bay Area, New York City, or Seattle metros, the expected salary range for the role is currently $350,000 - $400,000. Actual offered salaries will vary and will be based on various factors, such as calibrated job level, qualifications, skills, competencies, and proficiency for the role.

For candidates living in all other US locations, the expected salary range for this role is currently $300,000 - $350,000. Actual offered salaries will vary and will be based on various factors, such as calibrated job level, qualifications, skills, competencies, and proficiency for the role.


Benefits & Perks
  • Virtual-first working model coupled with in-person events
  • 20+ company-wide holidays including two week-long shutdowns
  • Libraries (collaborative workspaces) in San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Toronto, and Manila
  • Stipends for remote work support, home office set-up and Thumbtack services (North America)
  • WiFi reimbursements
  • Cell phone reimbursements (North America)
  • Employee Assistance Program for mental health and well-being

Learn More About Us

Thumbtack embraces diversity. We are proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and do not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, color, age, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, marital status, military or veteran status, genetic information, disability status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, provincial, state, or local law. We also will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records, consistent with applicable law.

If you are a California resident, please review information regarding your rights under California privacy laws contained in Thumbtack’s Privacy policy available at .