Director AI Science – Search/NLP

Website Target

Description:As a Director of AI Science for Search/NLP at Target, your mission will be to help millions of our guests find the right products whether they are searching for products on the website or using our mobile app in the comfort of their homes or in our stores. You and your team will utilize a wide variety of techniques from information retrieval, NLP, machine learning and deep learning/computer vision to develop novel approaches to solving challenging problems in search, understand the intent and preferences of our guests and return highly relevant and contextualized results to them.

You will partner with engineering teams to design, deploy, and productize algorithms and models. You will stay close with internal business partners to define roadmaps for your team’s products and services. You will take other technology teams as partners to understand relevant systems – among those teams you will partner with will be your peer teams within AI to continue development and future of AI at Target.

As a Director of AI Science for Search/NLP here at Target, you will:

  • Build the vision, strategy and roadmap for AI based search and NLP services
  • Understand and decompose complex business problems
  • Develop and deploy models/algorithms based on Machine Learning, Deep Learning, informational retrieval, NLP and Reinforcement Learning that will power search applications.
  • Align work and set priorities appropriate to the development of all team members while ensuring business objectives/goals are met
  • Lead, coach and oversee the work performed by your team to ensure goals and objectives are met and team expectations are clear
  • Communicate day-to-day decisions, priorities and relevant project information to appropriate team members regarding projects and initiatives
  • Design best practices for AI science at Target
  • Review models and algorithms developed by your team
  • Keep abreast of industry research
  • Take the lead and initiative to plan and deploy releases
  • Mentor/train other scientists and engineers on technology
  • Support agile ceremonies


  • PhD in machine learning, computer science, information retrieval or other highly quantitative fields.
  • 7+ years of industry experience with outstanding track record building and deploying search and NLP applications with focus on named-entity recognition, query expansion, recommenders, and relevancy ranking components from ground-up using machine learning and clickstream data
  • Highly proficient in one or more of C++, Java, Scala, Python or equivalent programming language
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Strong history of ownership in driving business outcomes and influencing stake-holders
  • Strong history of and desire to coach and grow technical teams
  • Proven ability to develop routines and processes to make teams more effective
  • Ability and passion to broaden and influence the present and future value and vision of AI at Target

Preferred Requirements:

  • 3+ years of managing teams and projects with demonstrated ability to attract, hire and coach team members.
  • Publications in top journals and conferences highly desired
  • Background in e-commerce or retail a plus
  • Track record of embracing and driving change, and influencing teams in adopting change to development/delivery methodology and processes

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Target will provide reasonable accommodations (such as a qualified sign language interpreter or other personal assistance) with the application process upon your request as required to comply with applicable laws. If you have a disability and require assistance in this application process, please visit your nearest Target store or Distribution Center or reach out to Guest Services at 1-800-440-0680 for additional information.

Target will consider for employment qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the San Francisco and Los Angeles Fair Chance Ordinances.

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