Discovery Communications

Distribution Operations Engineer

4 months ago
Requisition ID
Career Category
IT & Technical Operations
Company Employee Full-Time

Position Summary

Distribution Engineering is a small team of engineers located at Discovery House Chiswick whose responsibilities encompass the aggregation and distribution of linear TV services to affiliate broadcasters across the EMEA global region for Discovery Communications and Discovery Northern Europe, both located at Chiswick Park, Eurosport located at Issy-le-Moulineux Paris, British Eurosport, Feltham, and various subsites in region.


The primary purpose of the position is to support Discovery’s existing compression and encoding platforms, to develop new systems, distribution solutions, to support new service launches and changes. To effectively manage risk and work towards constantly improving service uptime across all associated baseband distribution and monitoring infrastructure at all of Discovery’s properties. In addition, the team provides on-going monitoring and support for services, in close partnership with third party broadcast service providers.


Distribution Engineering’s responsibilities demand that any candidate should to have good interpersonal skills to complement our public responsibilities, where the team interacts directly with customers, other professional teams within Discovery and Eurosport and beyond, where for most, English is not a first language. Good communication ensures the reliable delivery of Discovery brands to numerous affiliate broadcasters to the highest possible standards.


Significant technological changes in the past two years has put TCP/IP network design and management skills, centre stage and has become core to the networks that Distribution engineering manage or utilise. Today it is considered essential for any candidate to have had work experience managing IP networks, and configuring and troubleshooting switches and routers.


Given the 24/7 nature of the Discovery and Eurosport operations, there is an on-call requirement shared across the team, managed by remote access. Overnight and weekend work is occasionally necessary to support projects as required; compensation is usually given in the form of time off in lieu.


Key Responsibilities:

  • Manage, maintain and configure compression technology systems located at Discovery and Eurosport’s, various locations.
  • Work with the team to develop new broadcast systems and maintain and develop existing systems.
  • Liaise with various internal project teams to deliver on future projects and services, and to manage changes to existing services.
  • Perform maintenance and diagnostic support for failing elements within transmission streams.
  • Support service distribution projects, by satellite, traditional fibre networks and IP networks. Both on internal platforms and external service providers, for Discovery and Eurosport services throughout the EMEA region. 
  • Work closely with the team in the management of third party suppliers and their implementation of projects and upgrades on our behalf, ensuring support agreements and SLAs are met and adhered to and risk mitigated.
  • Track system equipment repairs and returns.
  • Evaluate and assess new technologies and equipment.
  • Create and update system documentation.
  • Design and propose fully costed technical solutions and implement these solutions.
  • Work collaboratively with and direct hired-in technical and engineering contractors.
  • Provide specialist technical support and information to other departments.
  • Provide on call out of hours support as part of a departmental support rota.
  • Other duties as required.





  • Ideally educated to degree level or equivalent, the applicant should be a broadcast engineer with relevant experience, and a working knowledge of network design and management, or an IT network specialist with extensive broadcast engineering experience.
  • A working knowledge of MPEG-2, DVB and H.264 compression standards.
  • Practical experience in managing and configuring network switches and routers, Cisco and or Juniper.
  • An in-depth knowledge of digital baseband signals, SDI, HD-SDI and ASI for video and PCM, Dolby D and E and its variants for audio signals.
  • Experience with current and legacy commercial encoding compression and multiplex technology and products, Cisco, Ericsson and Harris/Imagine would be an advantage.
  • The ability to troubleshoot compression system issues using appropriate diagnostic tools, test equipment and data stream analysers.
  • Practical working knowledge of baseband broadcast test and measurement equipment.
  • Practical experience of broadcast facility installation practices and procedures.
  • Experience with standard monitoring systems, Evertz monitoring wall technology and routers.
  • Experience of compiling cable schedules.
  • Planning and design optimal systems and rack layouts for system installations.
  • Standard office IT skills – MS Office, MS Visio, MS Project, MS Power Point.
  • Self-motivation and the ability to advance projects without supervision are essential.
  • Yet also can work effectively in closely knit team
  • The ability to deal with multiple workflows and to identify and prioritise their responsibilities in changing environment.
  • The successful candidate will be expected to communicate with and meet a wide variety of people within and without of the organisation during their career at Discovery & Eurosport; therefore, excellent presentational and literate communication skills are essential.






Desirable skills:


  • An understanding and practical experience of conditional access systems.
  • Knowledge and experience of video VBI insertion, including Teletext, Teletext subtitling, and cue signalling. Plus, DVB and OP47 subtitling standards.
  • Understanding of remote cueing technology, SCTE 35 & 104.
  • Past completion of CCNA or another advanced network skills accreditation would be considered very favourably.
  • Knowledge of compliance recording systems, such as Volicon.
  • Knowledge of satellite distribution and RF up-linking technology and satellite reception systems and technology.
  • Fibre and Telco technologies, SDH, ATM, IP.
  • Previous experience and use of SNMP monitoring systems, such as Skyline’s Dataminer, would be advantageous.
  • System drawing skills.
  • Knowledge or training in project management, and project management tools
  • A familiarity with current and relevant health and safety regulations and training pertinent to the broadcast environment.


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