Scientific Officer (Bioinformatics)

Requisition ID:  26164

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Open Ended
Working Pattern:  Full Time
Posted Date:  18 Sep 2023


Salary: £29,605 to £30,487 with progression to £32,982 per annum


Newcastle University is a great place to work, with excellent benefits. We have a generous holiday package; plus the opportunity to buy more, great pension schemes and a number of health and wellbeing initiatives to support you.


Closing Date: 22 October 2023



The Role

The Newcastle University Bioinformatics Support Unit is looking to recruit a Bioinfor-matician to support the running and development of our bioinformatics service.  You will also have opportunities to develop and apply cutting edge bioinformatics to ana-lyse a variety of data sets including those arising from high-throughput sequencing (RNA and DNA) to keep up with new methods and sequencing technologies.  


You will have a first degree in a relevant subject, an in-depth understanding of current developments in bioinformatics and knowledge of a modern scripting language. It is expected that you will have specific experience with high-throughput experimental data, especially sequencing data. A relevant postgraduate degree is desirable.


This post is part of the Bioinformatics Support Unit and will be physically located on the University Medical School site but may be required to work close to Genomics Core facility based at the International Centre for Life.


More details on the Bioinformatics Support Unit can be viewed here:  


This is a full time, open-ended post.


Informal enquiries regarding the post may be made to Ann Hedley (

Reporting to the Senior Experimental Scientific Officer (SESO -Bioinformatics) and based in the Bioinformatics Support Unit (BSU) core facility, you will specialise in the analysis of high throughput biological data. 


You will support the SESO in running and development of the Bioinformatics Support Unit (BSU).  The role of the BSU is to analyse a variety of biological data sets, includ-ing those arising from high-throughput sequencing (RNA and DNA) and from other technologies such as proteomics, curated databases, etc.  This would involve as-sessing the viability of an array of informatics methods and integrating the best into efficient bioinformatic and informatics pipelines. You will work closely with the Ge-nomics Core Facility, expert bioinformaticians, academic scientists, including compu-tational scientists and biomedical users. You will be self-motivated with a background in computational biology and bioinformatics and with experience in programming for data analytics (R or Python on UNIX/Linux and preferably with experience working on HPC clusters), gained through either work and/or formal qualifications.

Key Accountabilities
•    Responsible for providing primary data analysis for data generated on the high-throughput sequencing platform as well as large-scale data from electronic health care records
•    Develop semi-automated pipelines for the necessary QC and processing of data
•    Develop consumer-facing reporting mechanisms for the above processes
•    To work with other team members to ensure that any relevant systems work together seamlessly
•    Undertake extensive reading and literature review in appropriate fields with reference to genomics, functional genomics and machine learning. To make desirable modifications to methods from relevant literature reviews
•    To assist the SESO with day-today operation, maintenance and servicing of equipment in the BSU to ensure maximum availability and access
•    To work with other members of the BSU where they are utilising the results of primary processing pipelines
•    To support the quality assurance processes within the unit
•    To work closely with staff in the Genomics Core Facility to ensure the best in-tegration of the two services (genomics and bioinformatics)
•    To work closely with academic scientists, including computational scientists, clinicians, biomedical users, as well as expert bioinformaticians outside of the BSU
•    Prepare reports and figures for inclusion in academic publications and grant proposals
•    Carry out any additional duties within the remit of the grade as required by the SESO
•    By developing local procedures, establish and maintain a safe/compliant work-ing environment
•    Oversee any required compliance tasks ensuring timely completion and maintenance of appropriate records
•    Schedule, prioritise and monitor work in line with demands and deadlines
•    Organise and facilitate progress meetings
•    Be a key contributor to specialism development, delivery and planning
•    Contribute to and support change
•    Create, update and implement procedures to deliver an aligned, efficient and effective service
•    Assist managers with the identification of training and development needs

The Person 


Knowledge, Skills and Experience 
•    An in-depth specialist understanding, and interest in, evaluation and possible acquisition of, the latest breakthrough technologies in bioinformatics, especially with reference to high throughput sequencing and data integration
•    In depth knowledge of a modern scripting language (e.g., Python, Ruby or Perl)
•    Experience scripting in R/RStudio
•    Experience with UNIX/Linux operating systems
•    Proven analytical and problem-solving skills and experience
•    Excellent team working skills and a customer-orientated, flexible approach to work
•    Must have excellent communication and people skills with the ability to deal confidently and diplomatically with a range of personalities and staff at all lev-els of seniority
•    Excellent time management skills

•    Specific experience with high-throughput experimental data, especially transcriptomics (RNA-Seq) and genomics (whole genome/exome sequencing data)
•    Experience or an interested in single cell and spatial transcriptomics
•    Experience of integrating the above with clinical metadata would be an advantage
•    Experience with high performance computing
•    An interest in machine learning
•    Knowledge of statistical analysis methods
•    Experience of web development using the latest technologies
•    Experience of workflow or pipeline management software
•    Experience building and deploying container images such as Docker


Attributes and Behaviour
•    Ability to work unsupervised and on own initiative
•    Excellent time management skills
•    Flexibility
•    Ability to multitask
•    Consistent and appropriate approach to staff and situations
•    Use of feedback for process improvement and staff development
•    Team player, self-starter and able to manage complex workload
•    Ability to respond enthusiastically and positively


•      Educated to degree level in a relevant subject; or broad relevant work experi-ence acquired through a combination of vocational training and on-the-job ex-perience, demonstrating development through progressively more demanding relevant roles
•    Professional registration with an accredited professional body or working to-wards this on appointment
•    Postgraduate qualification in a relevant subject


Newcastle University is a global University where everyone is treated with dignity and respect.  As a University of Sanctuary, we aim to provide a welcoming place of safety for all, offering opportunities to people fleeing violence and persecution.


We are committed to being a fully inclusive university which actively recruits, supports and retains colleagues from all sectors of society.  We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all of our employees and the communities they represent.  We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from individuals who can complement our existing teams, we believe that success is built on having teams whose backgrounds and experiences reflect the diversity of our university and student population.


At Newcastle University we hold a silver Athena Swan award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality.  We also hold a Race Equality Charter Bronze award in recognition of our work towards tackling race inequality in higher education REC.


In addition, we are a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe. 

Requisition ID: 26164