Microbiological Risk Assessor x 3

Food Standards Agency

Apply before 11:55 pm on Sunday 12th December 2021


Reference number



£30,350 (National) per annum, £32,350 (London) per annum


Higher Executive Officer
HSO (Higher Scientific Officer - equivalent to HEO Grade)

Contract type

Fixed Term

Length of employment

2x Permanent, 1 x 5 month FTA

Business area

FSA - Science, Evidence & Research - Risk Assessment

Type of role

Risk Management

Working pattern


Number of posts



Multi-location from one of our FSA Offices (Belfast, Cardiff, Birmingham, London or York), or home based in the UK. Please be aware that this role can only be worked within the UK and not overseas. Travel across the UK will be required on an occasional basis, possibly with overnight stays.

About the job


The FSA is a non-ministerial department of over 1300 people, with a big vision – to drive change in the food system so that it delivers “food we can trust”. Our primary goal is to continue to protect public health and consumers’ wider interest in food. As we have now exited the EU the FSA faces a significant period of change and activity.

Job description

The Agency’s mission to protect consumers often calls for scientific research that can provide clarity and direction to our work. Our Microbiological Risk Assessment (MRA) team is responsible for assessing the microbiological risks that impact our food and feed chain and plays an important role in the wider risk assessment carried out by the FSA. As well as carrying out robust risk assessments, the team also commissions external research that empowers us to make decisions based on the latest science.

We have an exciting opportunity for 3 microbiological risk assessors to join the Science Evidence and Research Division. Working on a wide range of projects, from detailed reports to incident response risk assessments, the successful candidate will engage in varied and fascinating work that will support not only the mission of the FSA but also the health of the wider public. Please note there are 2 x permanent positions and 1 x Fixed Term position (5 Months).

The post holder will work with colleagues from across the Agency, as well as other government departments, consumer representatives and scientists within our external partners’ organisations. Using their experience in scientific analysis, they will provide the insight and guidance that will drive the FSA’s response to chemical hazards that present a risk to UK consumers.

The work requires flexibility, as well as the ability to deliver results at pace when necessary. If you are as comfortable working in a close-knit team as you are settling down to work on a longer project under your own initiative and are driven by a desire to deliver excellent scientific research and analysis, do not hesitate to apply.


Please read the attached Candidate Pack to discover further details about the role, our organisation, who we are looking for and the criteria we will assess against during the selection process. We look forward to receiving your application and wish you every success.


We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Working Together
  • Delivering at Pace


Our candidate pack details the benefits that the FSA has to offer. Please also refer to the attached Terms and Conditions statement.

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Behaviours and Experience.
Full details of the selection process are detailed in the attached candidate pack. This will consist of shortlisting against the essential and desirable person specification criteria stated. If successful at shortlisting stage, you will be invited to the final selection stage consisting of a behaviours-based interview.

In the event of receiving a large number of applications an initial sift may take place on just the identified lead criteria indicated below:

• Experience of conducting risk assessments and/or interpreting experimental data.

The FSA is committed to being an inclusive employer with a diverse workforce. We encourage applications from people from the widest possible diversity of backgrounds, cultures and experiences. All appointments are made on merit.

We actively review the deployment of talent on a periodic basis in the interests of optimising personal development and the achievement of business plans.

Our candidate pack details the benefits that the FSA has to offer. Please also refer to the attached terms and conditions statement.

Any move to the Food Standards Agency from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax Free Childcare.
Determine your eligibility at https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk

A reserve list will be held for a period of up to 12 months from which further appointment may be made.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals from the EU, EEA or Switzerland with settled or pre-settled status or who apply for either status by the deadline of the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
  • relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
  • certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals
Further information on nationality requirements

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles.
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Apply and further information

Once this job has closed, the job advert will no longer be available. You may want to save a copy for your records.

Contact point for applicants

Job contact :
Name :  Anthony Wilson
Email :  Anthony.J.Wilson@food.gov.uk
Recruitment team :
Email :  hr.recruitment.campaigns@food.gov.uk

Further information

If you wish to raise a complaint then please email hr.recruitment.campaigns@food.gov.uk in the first instance.

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