The Neighborhood Stabilization Unit at HPD launched the Zombie Homes Initiative in the summer of 2017 with a grant from the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) to address the problem of vacant and abandoned “zombie” properties. LISC has awarded this grant to New York City and other municipalities across New York State to help implement and enforce the New York State Zombie Property and Foreclosure Prevention Act of 2016. This legislation mandates that banks and other lenders maintain the zombie properties in their portfolios and establishes significant fines for failing to comply. It also requires the New York State Department of Financial Services to create and administer a registry of vacant and abandoned properties. HPD was recently awarded a second round of funding from LISC to build on the successful work completed in the first round.
Through its Zombie Homes Initiative, the Neighborhood Stabilization Unit developed a database and predictive model, comprised of a series of scripts, which analyzes various municipal datasets to identify properties that are likely to meet the definition of a zombie homes. The Data Engineer/Applications Developer will be responsible for integrating the individual components of HPD’s Zombie Homes Database into a single computer application. This person will also work with other staff in the Neighborhood Stabilization Unit to streamline the data collection and integration processes to create a case management system for tracking identified zombie homes. The Data Engineer/Applications Developer will be a self-starter who is able to manage multiple projects in a timely manner.
Under the direction of a Senior Project Manager in the Neighborhood Stabilization Unit, the Data Engineer/Applications Developer will perform duties including, but not limited to the following:
• Consolidate the Zombie Homes Database into a single application. This includes improving the performance of current data processes (data collection, case management, and data modeling), integrating all data processes into a single workflow, and developing the architecture and desktop interface for the application that will host these data processes.
• Conduct frequent maintenance and testing of the Zombie Homes Database application.
• Build a case management system to track zombie homes through the surveying, referral, and enforcement processes. This system will be linked to the Zombie Homes Database.
• Document all work related to the development and integration of the Zombie Homes Database, including design reports, data workflows, and data dictionaries.
• Conduct descriptive and spatial data analysis of properties included in the database, as requested.
• Train the Neighborhood Stabilization Unit and other HPD staff on the use of the Zombie Homes Database application and its documentation.
• Coordinate with the Office of HPD Tech to ensure the proper functionalities of the Zombie Homes Database application and compliance with HPD’s business requirements and practices.
Required Skills and Experience
• An associate or bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in computer science, software/computer engineering, applied math, statistics or a related field
• A minimum of one year of full-time work experience in the fields of computer science, application development, and/or data engineering
• Experience building computer and/or mobile applications and case management systems
• Strong data analysis, data mining, and data modeling skills, and familiarity with machine learning
• Strong application development skills in at least one coding language. R and R-Shiny preferred, but will also consider Python, C/C++ Java, Perl, MatLab, SAS, etc.
• Familiarity with database architectures, including SQL- and non-SQL-based technologies
• A master’s degree in computer science, software/computer engineering, applied math, statistics, or a related field
• Understanding of and experience with parcel-/building-based and/or real estate data, especially within the context of New York City
• Experience with data cleaning, database integration, and complex, unstructured datasets
• Strong writing, research, and problem-solving skills
• Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to relate to people from different backgrounds
• Knowledge of New York City government and housing issues
How to Apply
To apply, please send a resume and cover letter to Ricardo Campos (email@example.com) and Hager Franklin (firstname.lastname@example.org) with “Data Engineer/Applications Developer, Zombie Homes Initiative” in the subject line. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.