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Project Development Engineer (Solar)

Sparkfund

Sparkfund

Remote
Posted on Tuesday, June 4, 2024

About Sparkfund

Sparkfund is an energy transition partner built to accelerate the energy transition by transforming the built environment into a productive, resilient, climate-adapted extension of the grid. We do this by partnering with utilities and building owners to provide program management, project implementation, and financing services and capabilities to our partners' customers. Together, we are creating a more equitable, resilient, and sustainable energy future.

Position Summary

Sparkfund is hiring a solar engineer / subject matter expert to join our Project Development Engineering team as a Project Development Engineer. This person will provide design, application, and consulting services to our Commercial Solutions team as well as to our utility partners and customers throughout the project development lifecycle, from early conceptual designs to fully engineered drawings, scopes, and pricing. This person will be Sparkfund’s solar SME, providing technical expertise and guidance directly to our partners, customers, and vendors, via external meetings and presentations, engineering assessments, and feasibility studies. This person will also support our Project Delivery team during and after project implementation.

This position will report directly to the Director, Project Development and will work cross-functionally with many internal teams, including our Program Management, Commercial Solutions, Vendor Management, and Project Delivery teams. The ideal candidate is a collaborative, proactive problem-solver who takes initiative and demonstrates strong communication and technical skills.

Location

Sparkfund is a fully remote company, but all applicants must be based in the United States, preferably the continental United States. This role will include travel within the US up to 30% of the time to customer offices and project sites, and proximity to a major airport is a strong preference. Additionally, we expect you to travel to Washington, DC and / or other US cities for organized team and / or company gatherings to collaborate with other members of the team / company, learn the ins and outs of our business, and contribute to our company culture.

Key Responsibilities

  • Consult on the design, development, scope definition, and pricing of solar PV and battery storage projects for our commercial and industrial customers.
  • Collaborate closely with the Commercial Solutions team to understand the customer’s goals, challenges, and requirements for a project and to identify and develop technical solutions to meet these requirements goals.
  • Generate high-level cost estimates to better qualify early-stage project opportunities – conduct site surveys or energy audits, analyze and assess system designs and energy usage data, and make preliminary equipment selections.
  • Conduct feasibility studies on customer sites, evaluating energy audits and assessing the technical viability and suitability of solar PV installations.
  • Conduct engineering assessments for proposed customer projects, ensuring the asset lifecycle meets the customer’s goals and budget.
  • Design and size solar PV systems, when necessary – review system layouts and site blueprints, review equipment / asset specifications, and perform engineering calculations, ensuring a high level of accuracy and efficiency.
  • Consult on the selection of asset vendors and subcontractors, providing the Vendor Management team with technical and practical insight during the bid process.
  • Provide consultative engineering services to customers and utility partners, including preparation of technical reports and support with presentation material.
  • Coordinate timely and accurate handoff of data to and from multiple internal stakeholders on the Program Management, Commercial Solutions, Financial Solutions, Legal, and Delivery teams.
  • Support the project implementation and post-implementation process as needed, providing the Project Management, Construction, and Customer Experience teams with historical data and technical consultations as requested.
  • Represent Sparkfund and/or Sparkfund’s partner in front of customers, facility managers, subcontractors, vendors, and other external parties, ensuring all groups have a positive and professional experience.
  • Apply expertise and lessons learned to the development of standard operating procedures, tools, processes, and other operations within Sparkfund, contributing to Sparkfund’s continued growth and success.

Required Skills & Qualifications

  • 3+ years of project development engineering experience in the clean energy, resilience, and / or energy efficiency space, including knowledge of project risks, key stakeholders, market incentives, and customer value propositions.
  • Technical expertise in solar panels, battery storage, and thermal storage – specifically commercial-scale and/or industrial-scale projects.
  • Experience with the utility, ESCO, energy management, or construction industries.
  • Working knowledge of relevant industry standards and regulations (e.g., ASHRAE, LEED, Energy Star).
  • Demonstrated analytical abilities with a keen attention to detail.
  • Strong written and verbal communications skills, including the ability to translate technical concepts and topics effectively for non-technical audiences in written reports and documents and verbal presentations.
  • Experience managing multiple projects at one time, with a demonstrated ability to switch between contexts quickly and efficiently.
  • Skilled at making sound and defensible decisions with incomplete information.
  • Ability to build and maintain long-term, trusting relationships.

Preferred Skills & Qualifications

  • Bachelor's or Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Energy Management, Environmental Science, or related technical field.
  • Experience with rooftop, ground mount and carport Solar PV design and installation.
  • Relevant professional certifications, such as NABCEP PV Design Specialist (PVDS), PV Installation Professional (PVIP) Certification or similar.
  • Proficiency in solar energy modeling software (e.g., PV Watts, Helioscope, Energy Toolbase, Xendee) and data analysis tools (e.g., Python, R, Excel).
  • Competency in software and cloud-based information management tools, including Salesforce, GSuite, and other project management tools.
  • Dedication to what we’re building at Sparkfund and a passion for combating climate change.

Benefits

  • Competitive compensation and stock option plans - we believe in shared ownership.
  • Comprehensive benefits package including medical, vision, and dental insurance as well as disability and life insurance.
  • Flexible vacation policy that encourages ~4 weeks of paid time off. We also observe all federal holidays.
  • 8 weeks gender-neutral paid leave for caregivers when they have a new addition to their families and an additional 4 weeks of paid leave for birthing parents.
  • A one-time, work-from-home stipend to help cover any equipment, hardware, etc. you need to set up your remote office.
  • A monthly allowance of $100 to help cover phone and WiFi expenses.

We Want You To Know

You can be a great candidate even if you don't fit everything we've described above. You can also have important skills we haven't thought of. If that's you, don't hesitate to apply and tell us about yourself. We are dedicated to environmental stewardship, and recognize we need diverse perspectives to successfully tackle this massive challenge. To change the world, we must first change ourselves, which is why Sparkfund has created a space that sources viewpoints from people who look and think differently.
We are committed to diversity and building an equitable and inclusive environment for people of all backgrounds and experiences, and we're taking steps to meet that commitment.
We especially encourage members of traditionally underrepresented communities to apply, including women, people of color, LGBTQ+ people, veterans, and people with disabilities.