Organisation UKRI
Organisation Detail UK Research and Innovation - Central Services
Reference Number IRC248225
Location Swindon See on Map
Salary £48202
Date Posted 01 February 2019
Grade RC-F
Contract Type Fixed Term Appointment
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 25 February 2019
Interview Date

Brief Description

Salary: £48,202
Grade: F
Contract Type: Fixed Term (until 31/03/2021)
Hours: Full Time/Part Time (0.6 FTE and above)
Closing Date: 25th February
Interview Date: W/C 11th March 2019

We are looking for a committed individual to lead the development and delivery of a new Programme Office to support more than £2.2billion research and innovation spend for development over the spending review period. This role is an excellent opportunity to shape the future management and delivery of two significant government Official Development Assistance (ODA) funds – the Newton Fund and Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF). Further information on these funds can be found at and

Research and innovation (R&I) is at the heart of UK economic growth, the Industrial Strategy and an outward looking Global Britain. This role sits within the BEIS-led Research and Innovation ODA Unit which is responsible for ensuring BEIS spend supports cutting-edge research to address the problems faced by developing countries and works to build science and innovation capacity in developing countries and the UK. It is a multidisciplinary team of approximately 20 people, based in both Swindon (employed through UKRI) and London and including policy, delivery, finance, analysis and comms experts. This role will be based in Swindon but require regular travel to London. As Head of the Programme Management Office, this role is a key part of the senior management of the unit.


This is an exciting opportunity to shape the planning, governance and delivery of BEIS’s £2.2bn spend on research for development. You will set up and lead a new Programme Management Office providing services to the wider R&I ODA Unit in support of the management and coordination of the Newton Fund and GCRF.

The Programme Management Office is a new organisational structure and the detailed roles and responsibilities will be developed by the post holder. However, the role and responsibilities of the Programme Office will initially include:

  • Financial management
  • Tracking and reporting
  • Information management
  • Risk and issue tracking
  • Project management.

You will be an experienced manager and leader with excellent skills and capabilities in planning, financial management, risk and issue management and stakeholder management.

Given the nature of the role, an ability to foster a collaborative, collegiate approach across virtual teams in support of collective working will be needed. Strong negotiating skills are important to ensure that positive relationships are built, as a key feature of the work is delivery through partnership.


Main Outputs & Activities:

  • you will design and establish a Programme Office working across several teams and functions within UKRI and BEIS, including the ODA Research Management team and BEIS ODA R&I policy and strategy team
  • you will provide leadership for the Programme Office team and line management for the Programme Office
  • you will lead on developing and implementing processes to track, measure and report on progress against programme plans and objectives
  • you will lead on tracking spend and meeting financial, DfID and other reporting requirements, including delivery partner grant letters
  • you will lead on developing and implementing appropriate levels of risk and issue management
  • you will provide leadership to project managers within the Programme Office to ensure that they are able to plan, design, execute, monitor and control assigned project(s) and are completed on time and to budget
  • you will lead on developing and implementing appropriate information management processes
  • you will engender a culture of continual improvement within the Programme Office and across the wider teams and stakeholders, routinely reviewing activity, and sharing learning
  • you will establish and maintain strong working relationships with key individuals in each Delivery Partners, BEIS and HMG where appropriate.

Other key information

Although these contracts currently only go through to the end of the spending review (SR) period on 31 March 2021, we expect these will be extended subject to SR outcomes.

Organization Description

What is UK Research and Innovation?

Operating across the whole of the UK with a combined budget of more than £6 billion, UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. UKRI will build on the successful elements from the current funding system and maximise the contribution of each of the component parts to create the best environment for research and innovation to flourish.

Building on success

The UK has a world class research and innovation system. Our expertise spans all fields of knowledge, from the discovery of penicillin and monoclonal antibodies, to the jet engine and the world-wide web. Our inspirational creative industries are strong in art, design and the innovative use of new materials and technologies. Our universities and laboratories produce a disproportionate percentage of the world’s top research, and their academics are highly-sought as international colleagues and co-authors and are among the world’s best at attracting overseas students Nor is this excellence confined to university campuses and research centres. Our engineering, automotive and pharmaceutical industries are successful in part because of the superb graduates they can hire and the top rate researchers that support them.

Our partners

The nine UK Research and Innovation partners each bring unique assets to this cooperation. Innovate UK helps businesses to identify the commercial potential in new technologies and turn them into the new products and services that will drive economic growth and increase productivity; Strong discipline-facing Research Councils encourage breadth and diversity, curiosity-driven research, and priority-driven initiatives; Research England’s work on knowledge exchange will focus on capacity and culture in universities and provide balance to the funding system. It will drive quality and impact through the REF and work closely with its counterparts in the devolved administrations.

Shortlisting Criteria


  • strong leadership skills with the ability to establish a persuasive future vision and manage and engage with people in a straightforward way
  • excellent programme management skills including time, risk, stakeholder and project management, planning and governance
  • strong financial management and budgeting skills
  • track record in developing strong, collaborative partnerships across diverse teams and external partners.
  • line management experience
  • effective stakeholder management skills with an ability to capture, utilise and share customer insight and views from a diverse range of stakeholders to ensure better delivery.


  • thorough understanding of project/program management techniques and tools
  • an understanding Official Development Assistance (ODA) spend.



  • educated to first degree level or relevant experience.


  • a recognised project or programme management qualification.

UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.

To enable us to hire the very best people we will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

Limited parking subject to waiting list.

Employee Benefits

UK Research and Innovation recognises and values employees as individuals and aim to provide a pay and rewards package that motivates staff to perform to the best of their ability. The reward package includes a flexible working scheme, a Career Average Revalued Earnings pension scheme, 30 days annual leave allowance and a number of other benefits.

Developing Talent

We are committed to developing employees in their roles throughout their career. Learning and development plans enable employees to continue their professional development through training and development opportunities such as e-learning, classroom training and on-the-job experiences. We encourage our employees to share their learning across teams and organisations.

Equal Opportunities

We strive to make decisions based on individual merit and ability. We welcome applications from all sections of the community and promote equality of opportunity in accordance with the Equality Act 2010. As holders of Disability Confident Employer status, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.

Online applications only. Please submit a covering letter and CV ensuring that the IRC reference is included in the filename description of each document uploaded. Please note that failure to address the above criteria or submitted without a covering letter may result in your application not being considered.

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