Hydrographic Surveyor and Processor

Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

Closing date: 28 Feb 2018

Reference number



£26,805 - £31,103


Higher Executive Officer

Contract type


Business area


Type of role

Environment and Sustainability
Project Delivery

Working pattern

Flexible working, Full-time, Job share, Part-time



Number of posts



Lowestoft, Eastern

About the job

Job description

Cefas is a world leading scientific organisation producing outputs for governments, industry and public sectors. Cefas undertakes projects within the UK and overseas in a variety of disciplines. High quality hydrographic data underpins many of our projects with Cefas overseeing the planning, collection and processing of data in accordance with international standards.
Cefas scientists not only collect high-quality data but are constantly investigating methods to improve the data collected and identifying novel ways of using these data. In addition to bathymetric data, Cefas utilise backscatter, water column and angular response to improve our understanding of the marine environment. Cefas are also part of an agreement to share data under the ‘collect once, use many times’ initiative.


You will be positioned in a dynamic team of hydrographers, geophysicists and habitat mappers and will be working on a wide variety of projects within the UK and overseas. Working with the Hydrographic Survey Manager, you will undertake the planning, acquisition and processing of high quality hydrographic data using multibeam and single-beam systems. There may also be the requirement to acquire and process side-scan sonar data as part of this role. You will also work with the Cefas engineering team in the mobilisation and troubleshooting of hydrographic and positioning equipment onto third party vessels and onto our 73m research vessel, the RV Cefas Endeavour. This is predominantly an onshore position, with the expectation of 2-3 surveys a year of 2-4 weeks.

You will be familiar with the setting-up and use of a variety of different acquisition and processing software packages. The role will also involve working with partner organisations during planning and data collection, offering advice and guidance where required.

Key Tasks
• Planning of hydrographic surveys
• Mobilisation of hydrographic and positioning systems onto vessels
• Collection of hydrographic data during inshore/offshore surveys, including troubleshooting if required
• Calibration of multibeam systems when required, including repeatability test to UK CHP standards
• Overseeing the collection of data by contractors and third parties
• QA and interpretation of hydrographic data during survey operations.
• Cleaning and processing of hydrographic data following internationally accepted standards
• Writing survey and processing reports for internal and external organisations.
• Working with the substrate and habitat mappers to develop new techniques and processes
• Accept and fulfil responsibilities and accountabilities as defined in the Health and Safety and Environmental management systems for this job role.
You will be given opportunities to develop as a Hydrographer through an internal training programme as well as the opportunity to attend national and international conferences to present your work.


• Familiarity with different multi-beam and single-beam systems (preferably Kongsberg and R2Sonic Systems)
• Experience of processing procedures and software (preferably Caris Hips and Sips, Fledermaus, FMGT, POSPac, Inertial Explorer, Triton Perspective)
• Experience of international standards for hydrographic data (IHO)
• Working knowledge of global positioning (Preferably SBG systems, POS MV, Seapath)
• Dynamic, team player.
• Computer literate including preparation of reports
• Good Communication and interpersonal skills
• Willing to travel overseas or working offshore for prolonged periods (up to 4 weeks).
• Post-graduate qualification in hydrography-related topic desirable.

Person specification

Please outline your previous experience and skills relevant to the job description.


- Degree, or equivalent qualification, in a relevant subject (Hydrography, Geography, Oceanography, Geophysics).
- ‘CAT A’ surveyor-trained or substantial equivalent professional experience.


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

  • Leading and communicating
  • Making effective decisions
  • Managing a quality service
  • Delivering at pace
  • Science and Engineering - Applying Scientific and Technical Knowledge

Civil Service Competency Framework



Civil Service pension schemes may be available for successful candidates.

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
Successful candidates must pass basic security checks.

Nationality statement

Candidates will be subject to UK immigration requirements as well as Civil Service nationality rules.

If you're applying for a role requiring security clearance please be aware that foreign or dual nationality is not an automatic bar. However certain posts may have restrictions which could affect those who do not have sole British nationality or who have personal connections with certain countries outside the UK.

Selection process details

Please note depending on the volume of applications an initial sift may be conducted on the lead competency Leading and Communicating, candidates must pass this competency for their application to be progressed.

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

Nationality requirements

Open to UK, Commonwealth and European Economic Area (EEA) and certain non EEA nationals. Further information on whether you are able to apply is available here.


Candidates in their probationary period are eligible to apply for vacancies within this department.

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 equality of opportunity. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Apply and further information

Contact point for applicants


Simeon Archer

Sift/interview dates and location

Sift and interview dates and location to be confirmed.
Interviews will be held at Cefas Laboratory, Pakefield Road, Lowestoft, Suffolk, NR33 0HT

Further information

Reasonable adjustment
If a person with disabilities is put at a substantial disadvantage compared to a non-disabled person, we have a duty to make reasonable changes to our processes.
If you need a change to be made so that you can make your application, you should:
• Contact Government Recruitment Service via defrarecruitment.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk as soon as possible before the closing date to discuss your needs
• Complete the “Assistance required” section in the “Additional requirements” page of your application form to tell us what changes or help you might need further on in the recruitment process. For instance, you may need wheelchair access at interview, or if you’re deaf, a Language Service Professional

Applicants who are successful at interview will be, as part of pre-employment screening subject to a check on the Internal Fraud Database (IFD). This check will provide information about employees who have been dismissed for fraud or dishonesty offences. This check also applies to employees who resign or otherwise leave before being dismissed for fraud or dishonesty had their employment continued. Any applicant’s details held on the IFD will be refused employment.

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