Ocean Environment Scientist (Geology and Acoustics)

UK Hydrographic Office

Apply before 11:55 pm on Sunday 12th February 2023

 

Details

Reference number

250359

Salary

£34,369
Further information can be found in the attached Document “Additional Pay Information”.

Job grade

Higher Executive Officer
B2

Contract type

Permanent

Business area

UKHO - Operations Production

Type of role

Analytical
Digital
Environment and Sustainability
Science

Working pattern

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

Number of jobs available

1

Contents

Taunton

Job summary

The UK Hydrographic Office’s customers require professional advice and a range of Situational Awareness products providing information about the marine environment to assist in their planning.

This role sits within the Ocean Environment Team – part of the wider Scientific Analysis Group.  The team is specifically responsible for managing a diverse range of marine environmental data (e.g. marine biological, oceanographic, geological, acoustic and ocean climatological) to support the UKHO's input into commercial, SOLAS, MOD and Allied requirements. To balance the skillsets within our team, we are currently requiring a scientist with a specialism in Geology/Geophysics and/or Acoustics.

Job description

Our customers require professional advice and a range of Situational Awareness products providing information about the marine environment to assist in their planning. To support this, the Ocean Environment Team, within the Scientific Analysis Group, acquires data from a variety of sources and analyses those data for subsequent use. The purpose of this post is to provide the expertise necessary to advise on the use of environmental data and development to provide an assessment of the environmental conditions likely to be encountered. This will be achieved through collaborations with external organisations and scientific communities.

Person specification

We are looking for a well-connected and enthusiastic Geologist and/or Acoustician who is able to apply scientific concepts and advances to meet real world customer needs. The ability to apply skills in data programming/data analysis to meet the evolving needs of our customers is key to success in the role, as is a genuine desire to work collaboratively as part of a small, dynamic team. Ideal attributes include the ability to problem solve and work independently with a positive can-do attitude.

Responsibilities:

Tasks fall in to 4 key areas:

Capability: Liaison with organisations (both UK and overseas) to meet the needs of assigned work and keep abreast of developments in marine environmental data and analytical techniques. Make the necessary arrangements to obtain data and provide this information as a dataset in a form readily useable by the customer. Develop a network of contacts throughout the scientific/NGO community to facilitate the best available current scientific understanding and enable collaboration activities to enhance the team’s capability. Take part in outreach activities to raise the profile of the team as a leading supplier of maritime scientific data and expertise.

Data analysis and presentation: Data is analysed to create representative descriptions of the environment. The post holder will undertake analysis of spatial data relevant to the teams tasking, to derive representative visualisations of the expected marine environmental conditions as well as improve analysis methodology in order to provide a better service, more efficiently.

Development: The job holder will develop a good understanding of the customers need for and use of environmental information and feedback from users is actively sought to inform development planning. Methods and software tools used for analysis or presentation of results will be continually reviewed and updated to meet changing demands, to improve products and to make best use of developments in data handling and processing technology.

Report writing and Quality Assurance: The holder will be expected to produce technical reports to record methodology and results or to present a case for changes to working practices, ensuring documentation is maintained for all analysis work.

Things you need to know
• This role is open to full time, part time, job share. The UKHO will consider flexible working or workplace adjustments, where appropriate.
• Security – successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check and gain a Security Clearance

The role will be contractually based at our office in Taunton. We have embraced hybrid working, recognising it is about what you bring to the role and deliver, not where you work from.

Based on the individual needs of your role, you may need to be in the office. Please discuss in more detail with the hiring manager to understand the needs of this role.



SC – Reserved
This is a Ministry of Defence reserved post and is open to UK nationals only, successful applicants will require a security clearance (SC) and therefore need to have resided in the UK for a minimum of 12 consecutive months within the last 5 years.

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

Qualifications

Postgraduate qualification in geology/acoustics including experience of working within these fields (e.g., Marine Geology, Marine Geophysics, Underwater Acoustics).

Behaviours

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

  • Developing Self and Others
  • Changing and Improving
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Working Together

We only ask for evidence of these behaviours on your application form:

  • Developing Self and Others

Technical skills

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

  • Be confident in spatial data analysis as applied to marine environmental data, including demonstrable experience of computer programming skills in either one or more of the following: R, Python, Matlab, and are able to adapt to other programming languages
  • Good working knowledge of geospatial software packages (e.g. ArcGIS, QGIS).
  • Experience with applied geophysical modelling.
  • Knowledge and understanding of the principles of Geology and the impact on underwater acoustics.
  • Demonstrable computer programming skills in either one or more of the following: R, Python, or Matlab.

We only ask for evidence of these technical skills on your application form:

  • Be confident in spatial data analysis as applied to marine environmental data, including demonstrable experience of computer programming skills in either one or more of the following: R, Python, Matlab, and are able to adapt to other programming languages
  • Good working knowledge of geospatial software packages (e.g. ArcGIS, QGIS).
  • Experience with applied geophysical modelling.
We offer a range of benefits to support your lifestyle, including generous leave allowances, flexible working hours, a lift-share scheme, enrolment in the Civil Service Pension scheme, and regular training and development opportunities.

We operate from a brand-new state of the art, award-winning building with an onsite gym, cafeteria, and state of the art meeting rooms; a Chaplaincy service; and an Employee Assistance Programme. We have several internal networks available for you to join, including Mental Health Group, STEM Ambassadors, Woman’s Network, Pride Network and Disabilities group. Travelling to UKHO onsite parking, electric car charging ports, and cycle-to-work scheme are available.

Full-time employees receive 26.5 days annual leave per year, increasing to 31.5 days annual leave after five years’ service (pro-rata for part-time employees).

We offer many flexible working options. These include: a flexible working hours scheme with up to two days per month Flexi leave, remote working, part-time working, job sharing, paid special leave, career breaks, and unpaid leave. We want you to feel part of something bigger and we encourage team-spirit and a community feel in our workplace.

Parents with children will be supported to enable you to manage work and family responsibilities. We offer an on-site independently run nursery with discounted prices for children of UKHO employees.

Any voluntary move to UKHO, from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. However, you may be eligible for other government schemes including Tax Free Childcare. You can determine your eligibility at https://childcarechoices.gov.uk

With regards to maternity, adoption, and/or shared parental leave the flexibility to have up to 26 weeks full pay, followed by 13 weeks statutory pay and a further 13 weeks unpaid leave. Paternity leave of up to two weeks is available with full pay, subject to certain qualifying criteria.

We offer at least 5 days’ learning and development to each employee per year, with professional membership subscriptions, mentoring, and Civil Service-Learning available to all.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Behaviours, Experience and Technical skills.

The selection process will be designed specifically for the role. As a result, your assessment could include:
-  An interview

- An exercise

- A presentation

This is a rolling campaign and expected dates are:

Round 1:

  • Close: 04/12/22
  • Sift: w/c 05/12/22
  • Interview: w/c 12/12/22

Round 2:

  • Close: 02/01/23
  • Sift: w/c 02/01/23
  • Interview: w/c 09/01/23

 Round 3:

  • Close: 22/01/23
  • Sift: w/c 23/01/23
  • Interview: w/c 30/01/23

 Round 4:

  • Close: 12/02/23
  • Sift: w/c 13/02/23
  • Interview: w/c 20/02/23

Please note these are expected dates and may be subject to change. We may not complete all rounds of this campaign if a successful candidate is identified. 


Short-list Criteria

You will be short-listed against the following criteria:

Pre-Sift:  Postgraduate qualification in geology/acoustics including experience of working within these fields (e.g. Marine Geology, Marine Geophysics, Underwater Acoustics) and the experience described in your statement of suitability.

Civil Service Behaviours:

  • Developing Self and Others

Experience:

  • Statement of Suitability: Postgraduate qualification in Geology/Acoustics (particularly Marine Geology, Marine Geophysics, Underwater Acoustics). Describe a relevant project you completed in your Geology/Acoustics postgraduate studies and provide an example where you have applied your knowledge, for example whilst conducting a research project or in a workplace setting (500 words).

Technical Skills:

  • Be confident in spatial data analysis as applied to marine environmental data, including demonstrable experience of computer programming skills in either one or more of the following: R, Python, Matlab, and are able to adapt to other programming languages e.g., Fortran.
  • Good working knowledge of geospatial software packages (e.g., ArcGIS, QGIS).
  • Experience with applied geophysical modelling.

 

Exercise: You will be asked to complete an exercise if successful at Sift. 

Presentation: You will be asked to create a presentation and submit the slides before your interview. The presentation should last 10 minutes and covers:

Knowledge and understanding of the principles of Geology and the impact on underwater acoustics.

Interview Criteria 

Civil Service Behaviours:

  • Changing and Improving
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Working Together

Technical Skills:

  • Knowledge and understanding of the principles of Geology and the impact on underwater acoustics.
  • Demonstrable computer programming skills in either one or more of the following: R, Python, or Matlab. 

Further Information
We have adopted anonymised recruitment. This means that your name, date of birth and other personal details will not be seen by the sift panel.

We may hold a merit (reserve) list for up to 12 months. During this time, if a similar role is identified and you have been placed on the merit list you may be considered for the post.

It is likely we will be able to start your employment with BPSS clearance (your clean DBS certificate and satisfactory references that we will obtain) before your SC/DV clearance is successful – this is called a conditional offer.

You will be presented with an unconditional offer only once you have obtained the necessary level of clearance for the role.

If your fail to gain SC/DV clearance, whichever is appropriate for the role you have applied for, your employment with UKHO will be terminated immediately.

Our ability to start employment on a conditional basis is subject to the specific requirements of the role and cannot be guaranteed; please contact our recruitment team if you would like further information: Recruitment.queries@ukho.gov.uk

Please note, if you have not been resident in the UK for the last 5 years (for SC clearance) or for the last 10 years (for DV clearance) then you may be requested to supply the information below:
• Evidence of your actual overseas residence (bills or rental agreements confirming addresses etc)
• Police Certificate providing confirmation that no criminal record is held in the overseas country of residence.
• Reference/Confirmation of employment from an employer in the overseas country of residence.
• Reference/Confirmation of residence or travel from friends, companions or fellow travellers that have knowledge of or have been in the company of you, when resident outside of the UK.
• Reference from a UK based organisation maintaining contract with a sponsorship of you, while residing overseas


Disability Confident – Guaranteed Interview

UKHO embraces diversity and promotes inclusion and equality of opportunity. We are a Disability Confident employer, which includes offering a guaranteed interview to candidates with disabilities, providing they meet the minimum selection criteria.

By ‘minimum selection criteria’ we mean that the evidence you provide in your application must demonstrate that you meet the minimum pass mark, set by the short-list panel, for each criteria listed in the ‘short-list’ section, above. The short-list panel will not be made aware of any disability you may choose to declare; this information will be processed solely by HR, in accordance with Data Protection legislation.

Civil Service Recruitment

From 01/10/2020, UKHO’s HR Department is to provide a Fair Processing Notice (FPN) to all new applicants after they have been successful at interview.
These candidates will be informed that, as one aspect of pre-employment screening, their personal details – name, NINO and date of birth - will be checked against the Civil Service Resourcing Extract Internal Fraud Database (IFD) and that anyone included on the IFD will be refused employment unless they can show exceptional circumstances.

UKHO’s HR Department will also include the FPN wording advising of the check against the extract IFD in the advert for employment for the pilot departments.

UKHO’s HR Department will, on behalf of the vacancy holder, inform applicants when they are refused employment because of their inclusion in the IFD.

From 28/06/2021- All new applicants, after they have been successful at interview, will be checked against the HMRC PAYE Employment History Database to verify employment records.

UKHO’s HR Department will, on behalf of the vacancy holder, inform applicants when the employment check will be carried out.

UKHO’s HR Department will inform the candidate if the check verifies the employment history.

UKHO’s HR Department will inform the candidate if the check shows gaps in the employment history and will request references from the applicant to cover the employment gaps.


Civil Service Commission
Recruitment into the Civil Service is governed by the Civil Service Commission which has two key functions.
- To maintain the principle of selection for appointment to the Civil Service on merit on the basis of fair and open competition.
- To promote an understanding of the Civil Service Code which sets out the constitutional framework in which all civil servants work and the values they are expected to uphold, and to hear and determine appeals made under it. More detailed information can be found at on the Civil Service Commission website:
http://civilservicecommission.independent.gov.uk



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

Security

Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check.

See our vetting charter.
People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK nationals only.

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.
The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.
This vacancy is part of the Great Place to Work for Veterans initiative.
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 : recruitment.queries@ukho.gov.uk
  • Email : recruitment.queries@ukho.gov.uk

Recruitment team :

  • Email : recruitment.queries@ukho.gov.uk

Further information

The Department’s recruitment processes are underpinned by the requirement of selection for appointment based on merit, open and fair competition as outlined in the Civil Service Commissioners’ Recruitment Principles, details of which can be found at http://civilservicecommission.independent.gov.uk If you feel your application has not been treated in accordance with the Recruitment Principles and you wish to make a complaint, you should contact the UKHO’s Recruitment Team, Human Resources, Admiralty Way, Taunton, Somerset TA1 2DN or email recruitment.queries@ukho.gov.uk, in the first instance. If you are not satisfied with the response you receive, you can further contact the Civil Service Commission at: Email: civilservicecommission.independent.gov.uk or in writing to: Civil Service Commission, Room G/8, 1 Horse Guards Road, London SW1A 2HQ

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