FPGA Team Lead

Location: Woking, GB

McLaren Applied Technologies:

McLaren Applied Technologies is a high-performance technology company which combines fresh thinking and innovation to solve crucial challenges and improve people's lives in industries as diverse as health, public transport, automotive and motorsport.

The Team:

The Embedded Software Team, based within the Electronic Systems department, is responsible for delivering embedded software, firmware, and FPGA that customers use to interface with electronic systems which are used in some of the world’s most prestigious motorsport series including Formula 1, WEC, NASCAR, and IndyCar. The group is also active in many other areas such as low power wearable technology and high power motor control.

The key strength of the team is its ability to work to rapidly to research and understand new technologies and how they apply to the market. We then empower customers to make best use of these technologies in novel applications by sharing our understanding. We use a range of tools including large micro-processor systems, microcontrollers and FPGA.

The Role:

You will be responsible for developing solutions and planning the execution path to deliver into specific systems and products. You will collaborate with teams across the department including Hardware, Electronic Systems, Business Development and Quality.

Principle accountabilities:

Technically architect solutions to develop class leading FPGA solutions within an embedded system.
People management responsibility for a small team, including setting clear goals, objectives and expected behaviours, agreeing development plans and regularly reviewing performance.
To develop the team both technically and in relation to their performance as a group, regularly reviewing progress and contributing to performance reviews.
Allocate resources and forecast resource and capability requirements for projects, liaising with key stakeholders.
Input to planning and resource forecasting. Set and organise the priorities and direction for the team.  Distribute work in line with project/ business requirements.
Plan, schedule and input to delivery of multiple concurrent projects (may work alongside Project Manager) in line with business imperatives.
Anticipate and resolve problems in area of work.
Manage the team to work in a safe and effective manner.  Ensure solutions/ systems meet functional/sector safety standards and are completed to quality standards timescales and budget.
Continuously improve processes, standards and tools for the benefit of the business and its clients.
Provide input into proposals, manage and communicate stakeholder requirements, resolve issues and make decisions in line with business plans; ensure own understanding and that of the team.

Manage, deliver and take responsibility for work that is outside core domain.

Provide clear technical input internally and work directly with clients/ prospects, independently and/or alongside the Business Development team.

Provide guidance on different approaches to development and delivery of solutions/systems that could yield better results, actively mentor staff to increase quality.


First class degree or upper 2nd in relevant discipline, or equivalent experience.
Proven experience of leading a team of class leading engineers.

Skills and Experience:


Act as a technical reference and lead engineer for the FPGA group.
Understand key processes within function and people management practices such as performance and absence management, recruitment and learning analysis and health and safety management.
Recognise the importance of diversity within a team.
Lead the team in the delivery of tasks and operate as an effective team member.
Experience in mentoring team members to support their growth and development.
Strong verbal and written communication skills and excellent technical knowledge.
A track record of prioritising, planning and coordinating activities across skills sets to maximise resource utilisation

Domain specific skills:

Technical knowledge to support the members of the team and act as main technical lead and contributor to projects. Skillsets include:
Experience using digital logic and general hardware design
VHDL and at least one scripting language (Tcl, Perl, Python)
FPGA design including analysis, planning, documenting, capture & implementation
FPGA verification using VHDL testbenches, file IO and scripts
Timing closure using constraint-based timing analysis and design optimisation
Xilinx development experience (Virtex-5, Spartan-6, Artix-7, Zynq)
Xilinx implementation tools (ISE, PlanAhead, Vivado)
Version Control (Mercurial, GIT)
Experience using a desktop computing environment (Windows & Linux)
Microsoft Suite of productivity tools

Personal  Attributes:

We’re looking for someone who takes pleasure from enabling a world class engineering team operate at their full potential combined with a willingness to learn quickly. You’re not going to know everything about the company straight away, but we need you to proactively seek learning opportunities into both the customer industries as well as the technical disciplines of your team members.

Work Environment:

You will be based either in our Woking Town centre offices with access to the world-renowned McLaren Technology Centre, or within MTC itself, depending on project requirements.

McLaren's Product Innovation Framework:

Take the unique opportunity to bring your own ideas to life, whether it’s a software package or a tangible product. If the application for your idea is successful, it will be backed by a significant pledge from the business to fund time and materials costs. Our ambition is that we continue to foster the spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship within Applied Technologies.

Recruitment Process:

If our recruiter believes you’re suitable for the role, you will then be invited for a phone interview with senior members from the engineering team which will last approximately 30 minutes. The final stage includes one or two face to face interviews at the McLaren offices in Woking, Surrey. This is usually with the Control Systems Manager, and a Senior Engineer or a Team Leader. The interview will involve a series of skills based technical questions and problem solving or design challenges