Senior Chemical & Biological Technician

Requisition ID:  26632

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Open Ended
Working Pattern:  Full Time
Posted Date:  6 Feb 2024


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


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: 05 March 2024



The role


We are seeking a highly motivated and skilled individual to join our team of Technicians, who support our teaching and research activities, as well as operate and maintain the associated equipment and facilities within the Discipline of Chemical Engineering at Newcastle University.  


Chemical Engineering forms part of an integrated School of Engineering where we work alongside other engineering disciplines and their technical teams. Our highly skilled and professional technical colleagues are essential to supporting the delivering of successful teaching and research to an international standard.  We have approximately 90 technicians employed within the School of Engineering working on both our campus and off-site facilities across the Northeast of England. We have expertise that spans a wide range of disciplines that make a fundamental contribution towards Newcastle University’s impact on the world.


As a Senior Chemical Lab Technician, you will be part of a technical team who provide technical support for academic and research staff within the chemical engineering labs as well as supporting our undergraduate students in their taught lab sessions. Ideally, for this role we are seeking an individual who has experience in analytical instrumentation to support our current analytical suite and successfully facilitate in the operation of our analytical equipment. Experience of using any of the following would be most welcome: gas chromatography, thermal gravitational analyser, differential scanning calorimetry, bomb calorimetry, ICP, FTIR spectroscopy, BET surface area analyser, particle size analyser.


Your day-to-day activities will be varied however they will predominantly include:
•    Providing core technical expertise across the chemical engineering labs including successful operation of equipment, deliveries and stock intakes, activities using chemical, gases and cryogenics as well as facilities maintenance
•    Managing our suite of analytical instrumentation, including operation, maintenance and training of other users
•    Facilitating in the smooth running of the undergraduate laboratory teaching sessions from Foundation to year 3 students
•    Involvement in health and safety processes such as delivering bespoke training, writing risk assessments and standard operating procedures, undergoing lab inspections and organising waste disposal


You will be supported by the Technical Team Leader and will have many opportunities to further develop and learn new skills through relevant training programmes

We are extremely keen to hear from any candidates from an analytical or chemical background who are interested in a rewarding and progressive career in higher education and have a desire to work as part of a diverse team in both teaching and research laboratories


For informal enquiries please contact Kevin Brown, Technical Team Leader, by e-mail at

To apply please upload a CV and cover letter outlining how you meet the criteria set out in ‘The Person’ section of the job description



Key Accountabilities

  • In conjunction with the technical team leader, be responsible for the day-to-day operation of specific laboratory facilities and items of equipment and instrumentation. To be responsible to undertake fault diagnosis, testing, repair, calibration and preventative maintenance on equipment and instrumentation
  • To be responsible for the disposal of hazardous materials according to standard University procedures. Ensure compliance with relevant safety procedures including relevant risk assessments. In conjunction with the  Team Leader and School Safety Officer monitor compliance with all statutory and local safety arrangements
  • To train and advise staff and research students in appropriate laboratory techniques and good laboratory practice to ensure that they are able to carry out their work in a safe manner. To provide laboratory supervision and training for postgraduate and undergraduate students and for junior technical staff using the facilities to ensure safe working practices are followed
  • In conjunction with the Academic, Research, other technical staff and students as appropriate, identify consumable and equipment requirements and initiate their ordering according to the School and University purchasing procedures. Keep financial records of any activities as directed by the technical team leader
  • To contribute to regular team meetings, health and safety meetings and workshop and/or laboratory audits
  • To have responsibility for the running and maintenance of analytical equipment as required
  • Provide comprehensive support and advice to staff and students on technical development, design, preparation, construction, assembly and setting up of experiments, including supporting the scheduling of project activities
  • Responsible for undertaking tests and experiments as part of ongoing research teaching, or commercial outreach activities in accordance with appropriate standards, including collating, providing both data and results for interpretation, processing, and archiving
  • As part of the Chemical and Biological Services technical team have responsibility for the running and maintenance of the Service in support of Research and Teaching involving the use of various types of Scientific Equipment
  • Any other duties within the scope and general nature of the grade which may be required


The Person


Knowledge, Skills and Experience 

  • Significant post apprenticeship work experience in a relevant technical role
  • Thorough working knowledge of Health and Safety procedures
  • Excellent team working skills
  • Demonstrates technical and problem solving capability
  • Demonstrates good organising ability to meet deadlines, with a positive and proactive approach to duties and diligence and attention to detail
  • Contribute to design and specification of research and teaching activities
  • Ability to adapt to changes in laboratory research and teaching priorities
  • Substantial Experience of working in and managing a Chemical and Biological Laboratory, including budgetary and safety issues
  • A good theoretical and practical knowledge of Scientific equipment, including repair and maintenance of such equipment


Attributes and Behaviour

  • Works collaboratively with others, plays a positive role in teams and establishes and grows relationships across the organisation where different skills, expertise and opinions are valued
  • Shares relevant and useful information with others
  • Respects the expertise and contribution of others even if own opinion is different
  • Willing to help others and share workloads
  • Works in a planned and structured way
  • Ensures that all activities are completed on time
  • Ensures that others know how processes and systems work
  • Set own priorities in conjunction with team and area objectives
  • Looks at ways of overcoming obstacles rather than coming to a standstill
  • Keeps an open mind to alternative ways of doing things
  • Keeps fellow team members up to date with progress
  • Pays attention to detail
  • Has a positive attitude for doing things better
  • Takes responsibility for achieving own targets
  • Co-operates with others to achieve targets
  • Strives to deliver high quality results
  • Is enthusiastic in getting job done on time
  • Recognises the need for change and is forward looking. Promotes the benefits of change to others and regularly comes up with new ideas. Has the willingness to adopt new ways of working and to make improvements



  • Higher National Certificate in Science (or Equivalent Level 4 Qualification) or equivalent relevant technical experience



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.  We are a Disability Confident employer and will offer an interview to disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria for the role as part of the offer and interview scheme.


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

Requisition ID: 26632