Organisation NERC
Organisation Detail National Oceanography Centre
Reference Number IRC242787
Location Southampton See on Map
Salary £35222 - £40166
Date Posted 20 September 2017
Grade NERC-5 New
Contract Type Open Ended
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 29 October 2017
Interview Date

Salary:  £35,222 to £40,166

Contract Type:  Open ended

Hours:   37 hours per week, Monday to Friday

Closing Date:  29th October 2017

About the role:
We know more about the surface of the moon than we do about the bottom of the sea.  The oceans contain the world’s largest ecosystem and are responsible for transferring heat around the planet.  Exploring and discovering this huge wilderness requires a vast array of equipment. All this is only possible with the backing of a team of highly skilled technicians. This is your opportunity to join one of the teams of seagoing technical staff and begin a journey within Scientific Ship Systems. You will provide support and advice for a wide range of instrumentation and acoustic systems permanently onboard the vessel, as well as the computing, networking and data logging infrastructure.

You will lead a multiskilled team within the Ship Scientific Systems group supporting the NERC Marine Facilities Programme (MFP) through provision of safe, efficient and effective functioning of NMF marine science equipment and support infrastructure, both ashore and at sea. This support will include Ship’s computing and data processing systems, acoustic and RF sensors as well as gravity and magnetic instruments.  A full training package will be given.

The job is unusual, challenging and varied and with that in mind we are looking for people who have more to offer than simple technical competence; personal skills of collaboration, engagement and the ability to communicate are just as important. You will play a key role in the development of equipment and techniques, both ashore, and at sea and will mentor and develop future technicians within the team.  You will manage a large budget and will play a vital role within the NMF structure and the expedition planning process.

This is a permanent position offered on NERC terms and conditions and is open to internal and external candidates.

This is a Band 5 position and the salary range will be £35,222 to £40,166 per annum. Depending upon skills and experience, a salary uplift and/or additional allowances may be available for exceptional candidates. An allowance of approximately £4,000 at current rates for time spent at sea (approximately 45 days) is paid on a per day basis.

About you:
You will be an enthusiastic and self-sufficient electronic or computing engineering Manager with significant knowledge and experience in IT systems management and electronic communications.  You will also be capable of diagnosing faults and delivering effective solutions to the business. You must be capable of managing and motivating a team to deliver excellence in the field of engineering support to oceanography.  You will hold a relevant degree in Computing Systems or Electronic Engineering or closely related discipline or hold significant relevant experience. A background in the delivery of ocean science in a technical capacity is preferable but not essential.  An interest in and experience of sea going vessels is desirable as are data analysis and programming skills particularly with C, C++, Python and SQL.  As part of this role, you will embark on vessels in support of the science program when required, therefore you must be prepared to travel, and be capable of travelling worldwide.

What we can offer you:
The NOC is committed to making the NOC ‘a great place to be, where our people succeed and deliver great work’. The NOC is committed to being recognised as a flexible employer to support employees’ work and personal commitments where possible. Our flexi-time system and flexible working policy contribute to this important aim.

In return for your talents, we offer a competitive remuneration package, including a RCUK pension scheme, 30 days’ annual leave with a further 14 Public/local days off and free car-parking.  Opportunities for further training and development are supported.

For more information, visit Working at NOC.

About us:
The National Oceanography Centre (NOC), part of the Natural Environment Research Council, is a national research organization, delivering integrated marine science and technology from the coast to the deep ocean and is one of the top five institutions of its kind in the world.

With sites in Liverpool and Southampton, it is the UK’s leading centre for sea level science, coastal and deep ocean research and technology development.  Working closely with its partners and associates, it provides capability to meet needs across the UK marine science community (

The National Marine Facilities directorate is one of the three major divisions of the NOC.  Based at the Southampton site, it is responsible for the operation and management of NERC’s two state-of-the-art global research vessels and the National Marine Equipment Pool.

For general enquiries regarding this role, please contact Andy Henson, Head of Scientific Engineering (

Our Commitment as an Employer:
The NOC is an equal opportunities employer and welcomes applications from all sections of the community. People with disabilities and those from ethnic minorities are currently under-represented and their applications are particularly welcome. The NOC is an Investors in People organization and is working towards achieving Bronze status for Athena SWAN – a scheme that recognises excellence in women's employment in science, technology, engineering, math’s and medicine (STEMM) in UK higher education. There is a guaranteed Interview Scheme for suitable candidates with disabilities.

Qualifications and Knowledge:


  • degree in Computer Systems or Electronic Engineering, or closely related discipline or equivalent qualification
  • sound knowledge of managing computer networks or complex maritime organic sensor networks
  • relevant industry experience in IT, communications and electronics, including the application of professional learning to deliver effective solutions to business.

Experience related to position:


  • broadly based IT skills with experience of a wide range of operating systems and environments.


  • a background in the delivery of ocean science in a technical capacity and experience of ships acoustic data gathering systems
  • experience in the analysis of data or management of data.



  • ability to diagnose faults and provide solutions under adverse conditions
  • self-motivated and able to manage personal work-load efficiently using a high degree of initiative aligned to a disciplined approach to problem solving and task prioritisation
  • a track record of leading and motivating an engineering team.


  • software skills in either Python,C,C++,Labview or SQL.



  • confident and articulate written and oral communication skills, able to communicate effectively with a flexible and engaging manner to all levels of user; is approachable and demonstrates a  predisposition to collaborative working and sharing of information
  • strong awareness of safety and environmental issues
  • meticulous and consistently professional approach.

Other requirements:


  • this role will require mandatory training in Personal Survival Techniques, Proficiency in Designated Security Duties and the ability to pass an ENG1 medical examination
  • you will be the holder of a valid passport
  • you will have the ability to apply for a US Visa (ESTA) or C1D Visa, where required and will be expected to work at sea for up to 45 days a year.

The aim of NMF is to develop, co-ordinate and provide major platforms, observing systems and technical expertise required by the UK’s marine science community. We provide the UK science community with access to the most advanced oceanographic research ships in the world (tonne for tonne) to enable discovery and strategic science.

Job Purpose:

Reporting to the Head of Scientific Engineering, the post holder will play a crucial role in the delivery of the NERC science programme by the provision of sea and shore support by efficient management of the Ship Scientific Systems group.  Directing resources, controlling budgets and developing personnel in order to deliver excellence in the provision of ocean science, the role will be as a senior manager within Scientific Engineering and play a leading part in the management of the group supporting other managers as required. 

Expectations of the role:

The maintenance of high engineering and safety standards in pursuit of NMF’s aims and goals by the application and development of robust processes and effective oversight. A strong team ethos, desire to innovate and pride in quality of output, strong leadership and management are essential.   You will oversee the development and training of your team to ensure they have the appropriate, current skills to deliver excellent support.

Key Accountabilities/Primary Responsibilities:

  • to manage the SSS group budget to deliver quality and value for money
  • to mentor and develop staff to produce a motivated and effective team
  • to be the technical authority for SSS equipment and processes
  • to spend up to 45 days a year at sea in support of the programme maintaining and developing practical skills
  • to manage all resources within the bailiwick of the SSS group to deliver the NERC science programme.

Expectations of all staff:

  • comply with Research Council and NERC policies at all times, including Equal Opportunities Policies and ensure that duties are carried out in accordance with relevant policies, procedures and guidance documents as directed by NOC
  • promote and demonstrate a personal commitment to NOC values and People Strategy
  • promote and demonstrate a personal commitment to Working with Respect – NOC Guidance
  • attend relevant seminars, workshops and training events and maintain professional development by completing CPD (Continuous Professional Development) appropriate to the role
  • maintain a safe working environment by attending Health and Safety training as required and follow local codes of safe working practices and actively contribute to embedding a safety culture across NOC
  • adopt and promote awareness of NOC’s environmental aims and other initiatives
  • carry out other duties within the scope, spirit and general purpose of the post and adopt a flexible approach to work
  • as duties and responsibilities change this job description will be reviewed and revised in consultation with you
  • undertake such other duties within the scope of the post as may be reasonably requested by your Manager.

Applications are handled by the UK Shared Business Services.

To apply, please attach an up to date CV and covering letter explaining how your skills and experience meet the requirements of the role.

We want to make our application process as easy as we possibly can. If you experience any problems in applying for this job, or have any feedback for us about the application process, please contact the UK SBS Recruitment Team on 01793 867000. Please quote the relevant IRC reference number when calling.

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