Principal Systems Engineer

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The Nature Conservancy

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16 days ago


Flexible within the USA




The mission of The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is to conserve the lands and waters upon which all life depends. As a science-based organization, we develop innovative, on-the-ground solutions to the world’s toughest environmental challenges so that people and nature can thrive. Our work is guided by our values, which include a commitment to diversity and respect for people, communities, and cultures. From a rewarding mission to career development and flexible schedules, there are many reasons to love life #insideTNC. Want to know more? Check out our TNC Talent playlist on YouTube to hear stories from staff or visit Glassdoor.

One of TNC’s primary goals is to cultivate an inclusive work environment so that employees around the globe have a sense of belonging and feel that their unique contributions are valued. We know we’ll only achieve our mission by hiring and engaging a diverse staff that reflects the communities in which we work. Recognizing that people bring talent and skills that have been developed outside the scope of a job, we take a holistic approach to recruitment that considers life experience in addition to the professional requirements listed in our postings. Please apply – we’d love to hear from you. To quote a popular saying at TNC, “you’ll join for the mission, and you’ll stay for the people.”


The Principal Systems Administrator position is responsible for technical implementation and the highest level of performance tuning and recovery procedures for mission critical enterprise systems. Serves as a technical expert in the area of system administration for a complex global organization.


  • Strong analytical ability and problem-solving skills are very important.
  • Serves in lead technical role in new areas in which the individual has no prior experience. Tasks and projects sometimes require the ability to quickly learn new areas in depth – both technical and non-technical - without formal training. Demonstrated interest and effectiveness in this type of environment are important.
  • Ability to be effective and creative in a highly cost-conscious environment is very important.
  • Vendor issue management experience, including data capture and upload as well as experience following up with the vendor on bugs and problems.


Engineering and Project Support

  • Work with Enterprise Architecture to establish and work within a technology roadmap and defined future state vision.
  • Establish on premise system upgrade and cloud requirements by understanding and anticipating business needs and goals over the proposed system lifecycle of existing and new systems.
  • Test procedures for new or upgraded servers/systems including installation, upgrades, cloud implementation and disaster recovery.
  • Serve as technical leader on projects, and facilitate effective technical or other decisions within diverse, consensus-based project teams.
  • Proactively plan infrastructure by understanding and anticipating business needs and systems goals.
  • Research and propose new software and/or hardware solutions.
  • Engineer and test operational processes such as disaster recovery for new systems or system enhancements or upgrades.
  • Coordinate with DBA’s, Network Engineers, Desktop Standards staff, and Project Technical Leads as needed in design and implementation activities.
  • Build or oversee builds of dev/test/staging/production environments from the hardware up through the system level.
  • Define ongoing maintenance procedures. Research and recommend innovative and automated approaches for system administration tasks.
  • Serve as technical leader on systems development projects, facilitating effective technical or other decisions within diverse, consensus-based project teams.
  • Provide technical / troubleshooting support for developers, especially regarding issues with potential to impact system stability, performance, or other operational concerns.

Operations and Support

  • Perform daily system monitoring, verifying the integrity and availability of all hardware, server resources, enterprise systems and key processes, reviewing system/security logs, and verifying completion of scheduled jobs such as backups. Act as needed on any issues identified.
  • Shared/rotating responsibility for responding to after-hours pager alerts from monitoring systems.
  • Collaborate with developers on deeper application or system level issues or issues with interactions between code and the web server or system level configuration.
  • Repair and recover from hardware or software failures. Coordinate and communicate with impacted constituencies for Tier I or II issues.


  • Support system enhancements or fixes by performing migrations to Staging and Production and working with developers on any issues that arise.
  • Perform maintenance or problem remediation activities during Wednesday early morning and / or monthly Saturday maintenance windows.
  • Apply OS/application patches and service packs on a regular basis and upgrade administrative tools and utilities and other third-party software.
  • Maintain operational, configuration, or other documentation / procedures.
  • Coordinate 3rd party vendor site visits for small scale application or server maintenance.
  • Perform ongoing performance tuning, hardware upgrades, and resource optimization as required, and perform periodic performance reporting to support capacity planning.

SA Project Management

  • Manage systems projects, including tracking objectives, milestones, constituent communication and hardware and staff resource coordination.
  • Manage operational projects. Work with management to establish project objectives, major milestones, and resources.


  • Bachelor (4-year) degree with a technical major such as engineering or computer science, or equivalent work experience and demonstrated proficiency in technical analysis and written technical documentation.
  • Five or more years of experience administering a complex Active Directory, Hybrid AD, or Azure AD environment of at least 1000 users.
  • Three or more years of experience implementing and maintaining Azure and/or Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud infrastructure, supporting line of business applications.
  • Three or more years of experience implementing and maintaining complex application environments, such as Citrix XenApp or CRMS, within an enterprise-scale environment (at least 1,000 users).
  • Experience configuring Azure and AWS IAM, storage and backup services.
  • Experience with OS-level scripting environments (such as PowerShell or bash) and interpreted languages (such as VBScript or perl).
  • Experience with Microsoft/Linux DNS, MS Failover Clustering, SQL Server
  • Experience and demonstrated effectiveness in a technical leadership role, whether formal or informal, within complex systems development projects having staff of diverse levels of experience and areas of responsibility.
  • Experience of cloud service models including IaaS, PaaS, SaaS.


Since 1951, TNC has been doing work you can believe in. Through grassroots action, we have grown from a small non-profit into one of the most effective and wide-reaching environmental organizations in the world. Thanks to more than 1 million members, over 400 scientists, and the dedicated efforts of our diverse staff and partners, we impact conservation around the world!

TNC offers a competitive, comprehensive benefits package including health care benefits, flexible spending accounts, a 401(k) plan with an 8% employer match, parental leave, accrued paid time off, life insurance, disability coverage, employee assistance program, other life and work well-being benefits. Learn more about our benefits on our Culture Tab on

We’re proud to offer a flexible work environment that supports of the health and well-being of the people we employ.


To apply for job ID 52813, submit your materials online by using the Apply Now button at Need help applying? Visit our recruitment page or contact

The Nature Conservancy is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our commitment to diversity includes the recognition that our conservation mission is best advanced by the leadership and contributions of people of diverse backgrounds, beliefs and culture. Recruiting and mentoring staff to create an inclusive organization that reflects our global character is a priority and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, military, protected veteran status or other status protected by law.

Do you have military experience? Visit our U.S. Military Skills Translator to match your military experience with our current job openings!

TNC is committed to offering accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application process. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, please send a note to with Request for Accommodation in the subject line.

Where legally permissible, TNC requires all new employees to be fully vaccinated and willing to keep up to date with vaccines that protect against COVID-19. By accepting an offer of employment, you agree to comply with this requirement, unless you are entitled to a legally mandated exemption.

An attractive salary and benefits package is part of TNC’s value proposition to our employees. TNC strives to provide competitive pay and bases salaries on the geographic location of the role committing to being equitable across groups and providing hiring salary ranges when possible.

Since we support flexible and remote work for our employees, many positions have a flexible location within countries where we’re registered as a Non-government Organization and established as an employer. This may mean we’re unable to provide a hiring salary range in the posting for some of our positions. However, candidates invited to be part of our interview process will be provided their location specific range upon request.