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Design, Full Time    Amsterdam    Posted: Thursday, March 28, 2019
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At we have exciting ambitions to build an unprecedented, personalised travel experience for millions of customers all across the world.

We are searching for an outstanding & disruptive data science leader to drive forward our machine learning strategy, deliver a personalized travel experience at a massive scale & envision the future of the travel industry.

Machine Learning is already a key component of our success in building an end to end travel experience & an area of significant investment for our company. We have made many breakthroughs in customer-first applications of Machine Learning & we are ready to take the next step in becoming a multi-product company with a personalized travel experience at the heart of its success.

We are determined to build the next generation travel experience for millions of Bookings customers, whether thats with personalization via recommendation systems & ranking, with NLP & NLU via the Booking assistant chatbot & machine translation services, or using deep learning techniques such as CNNs to improve the way our customers consume inspiring content on our platform.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Responsible for setting & implementing our global Machine Learning Strategy, which is a critical component of our company strategy
  • Deliver on our personalisation ambitions, creating an unprecedented, personalised travel experience for our users
  • Be an active ambassador for Machine Learning throughout the business, including being the main stakeholder to our Leadership Team
  • Lead the teams who are building out our state of the art Machine Learning services & tooling, to enable ML all across the business
  • Be responsible for our dedicated Machine Learning Centre in Tel Aviv, Israel
  • Lead our ML community, being the senior stakeholder for recruiting the best talent & developing our people
  • Sponsor of strategic investments relating to ML/AI, such as acquisitions, partnerships with universities & internal investments.


Must be an Industry Expert with no less than 15 years of experience gained in fast moving, global technology companies. In addition:

  • Extensive experience leading & executing projects that use machine learning in order to solve real-world customer & business problems.
  • Experience managing very senior stakeholders in a matrixed organization, as well as leading multi-disciplinary tech teams including data scientists
  • Experience defining & implementing Machine Learning strategies at scale
  • Knowledge of the latest trends in Machine Learning, & an understanding of how they are being applied successfully at scale
  • Masters or PhD degree or equivalent qualification, preferably in one of: Computer Science, AI, Mathematics, Statistics or Physics.


Leading Change

  • The ability to think big & simultaneously understand & appreciate the details necessary to operationalize overarching strategies & goals; The ability to make sense of complex issues & ambiguous situations.
  • Challenges assumptions about the way things are done.
  • Communicates explicitly what must change, why changes are necessary, & possible outcomes & costs.
  • Adjusts communication style to the audience to help them understand & accept the change.
  • Encourages people to support & propose changes & ideas.

Building relationships, Collaborating & Influencing

  • Establishes relationships & enhances the levels of cooperation, collaboration, & trust that exist between people, interacting with others personally, competently, & effectively. Establishes relationships inside & outside of the organization. Fosters a culture that makes people feel valued & respected & leverages even difficult or tense circumstances to enhance relationships.
  • Negotiates with a genuine give-and-take approach, where both acts as true peers & decisions are shared.
  • Spends time identifying all stakeholders necessary & meets or connects with all of them, neglecting no one to shape a collective consensus.
  • Identifies opportunities to build relationships that will help others achieve their objectives & reaches out to those people or new people.

Driving Results

  • Responds resourcefully, flexibly, & positively when faced with new challenges & demands. Willingly & effectively deals with the stress & complexities of various situations. Moves forward productively under conditions of change or uncertainty
  • Demonstrates & fosters a sense of urgency, a can-do spirit, a sense of optimism, ownership, & strong commitment to achieving goals & organizational success. Demonstrates a strong sense of ownership & a commitment to achieving meaningful results.
  • Checks work of self & others against required quality standards.
  • Reviews performance & progress on a regular basis to ensure team is achieving results.
  • Tests to see if goals are sufficiently challenging & implements corrective action based on deviations.

Other Personal Characteristics

  • Able to function in a fast-moving entrepreneurial environment
  • Able to translate complex, technical topics into compelling, easy to understand stories to both tech & non-tech audiences
  • Humble yet confident, with high self-awareness
  • A strategic thinker yet focused on execution; able to roll up the sleeves to get things done
  • Self-starter with high energy & drive; fast paced & results driven; forward thinking
  • Experimental, ready to learn & open to change
  • Keep the customer at the centre of everything you do
  • Data driven
  • Good cultural & organizational sensitivity
  • Committed to building a diverse, inclusive work environment

Our reward philosophy is designed to give you the best deal possible:

  • Opportunity to grow professionally & to shape the future of the global travel industry
  • A high-scale, complex, world-renowned product
  • See the real time impact of your work
  • Smart, driven colleagues & a fast-paced, performance driven culture
  • Great headquarters in Amsterdam, one of Europes most cosmopolitan cities
  • Scope for rapid career development, continuous training & active community participation
  • Competitive compensation & benefits package & great added perks

Key Relationships:

Reports to: SVP, Chief Product Officer, David Vismans

Other key relationships:

  • Leadership Team Central Product Organization
  • Leadership teams Business Units Accommodations, BookingGo, Operations, China
  • Machine learning teams in all Business Units & Commercial Function

Our Company

Established in 1996 in Amsterdam, has grown from a small Dutch start-up to the third largest ecommerce company in the world. is the largest business within Booking Holdings (NASDAQ: BKNG) & accounts for the vast majority of Booking Holdings total revenue. Booking Holdings is a leading Fortune 500 e-commerce conglomerate with a market cap of approximately $80 Billion & revenues of $12.8 Billion (2017). currently employs more than 17,000 employees in 214 offices in 70 countries worldwide. With a mission to empower people to experience the world, invests in digital technology that helps take the friction out of travel. connects travelers with the worlds largest selection of incredible places to stay, including everything from apartments, vacation homes, & family-run B&Bs to 5-star luxury resorts, tree houses & even igloos. The website & mobile apps are available in over 40 languages, offer more than 28,984,513 total reported listings, & cover 142,259 destinations in 229 countries & territories worldwide. Each day, more than 1,550,000 room nights are reserved on its platform. So whether travelling for business or leisure, customers can instantly book their ideal accommodation quickly & easily with, without booking fees & backed up by its promise to price match. Via the customer experience team, customers can reach 24/7 for assistance & support in over 40 languages, any time of the day or night.

Financial & Operational Highlights

On 5 November 2018, Booking Holdings announced third quarter 2018 results of gross travel bookings up 12% YOY to $24.3 billion, total revenue increase 11% YOY to $4.8 billion. Net income in the 3rd quarter was $1.8 billion, a 3% increase versus the prior year.

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