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Software Engineer

Chicago, IL

How Tock got started

Tock is only two years old but the idea originated several years ago out of a simple frustration: no-shows (people who bail on their reservation) are costing restaurants money. Nick Kokonas and Chef Grant Achatz opened Alinea here in Chicago to international fanfare in 2005 - now a perennial Michelin three star and widely considered one of the best restaurants in the world. For years they were spending $140,000 a year on staff dedicated to managing reservations and losing an average of $260,000 a year on no-shows. Convinced there had to be a better way, Nick built a crude ticketing system to solve the problems and lower labor costs. The homemade platform was a success. Nick founded Tock with Brian Fitzpatrick, founder of Google’s Chicago engineering office, to turn this simple idea into a robust product complete with all the tools a restaurant needs to succeed.

What is Tock?

Tock is, at its simplest, a reservation system. Guests use Tock to make reservations and pay for experiences up front like chef’s tasting menus, kitchen tables, or special events, while restaurants use Tock to manage these reservations (book, edit, cancel, reschedule, etc), manage their guests (view and edit guest notes, reservation notes, tags, photos, dietary restrictions, reservation history, bios, etc), manage services (assign guests to tables, text message guests, accept walk-in guests, etc), and review financial reporting.

But we’re much more than that.

So, why Tock?

Running a restaurant isn’t easy. Even the world’s best restaurants struggle to make ends meet. From rising labor, real estate, and food costs, to legal complexity regarding tipping and overtime pay, to unsustainable no-show rates, a restaurant is faced with a daunting task at becoming profitable. We want to change that! We want to solve the problems that other restaurant software has deemed too hard or too complex. All while making it fast and beautiful.

Who uses Tock?

Many of the world’s best restaurants use Tock, from Alinea, Acadia, Milk Room, and Smyth and Loyalist here in Chicago, to Eleven Madison Park, The French Laundry, The Fat Duck, minbar, Noma, Atelier Crenn, and hundreds more across the world.

About our team

We are an extremely passionate group dedicated to changing the world of restaurants. Maybe that sounds crazy but we’ve amassed a team capable of making it happen.

About the Job

You'll be helping us build the next generation restaurant ticketing system, based on the tried and true (and proven) system deployed at world class restaurants such as Alinea, Next, Trois Mec, and more. We're looking for engineers who are generalists — you'll be working with a mix of front-end web development tools. Our team is pretty small (a few engineers, a designer, and a product manager), so there's a great opportunity for you to make a difference.

About You

  • Have at least 2 years of experience building software
  • Understand all parts of a modern web based application stack
  • Are self-motivated and work well with little direction
  • Enjoy being part of a team that works and learns together
  • Have excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Prefer to experiment and use data to drive decision making
  • Love making and building things as part of a growing team


  • Build next-generation web applications with a focus on the client side
  • Implement new user interfaces and pick up Java as necessary
  • Contribute to core team culture and contribute code to efforts across the company
  • Support, maintain and upgrade code and participate in necessary design and implementation of a complex system
  • Engage with back-end systems