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Technician - Design Unit

Requisition ID:  9901

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Open Ended
Working Pattern:  Full Time
Posted Date:  22-Jul-2021


We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.


Salary: £25,941 - £27,511, with progression to £30,046 per annum

Closing Date: Friday 20 August 2021



The Role 


This is an exciting opportunity to join the Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering Technical Services Team based in the School of Engineering. This is a full-time permanent position which will be based in Newcastle. The role will involve some travel and has an expected start date from September 2021. 


You will assist the Design Unit Technician Supervisor and Design Unit Technical Staff in providing support to Design Unit Engineers in the manufacture and operation of precision test machines designed, built, and operated by Design Unit.  You may be involved in the manufacture and assembly of precision mechanical test machines and the manufacture of precision test components and may also include the characterisation of the test components in the Design Unit materials and metrology laboratories and require short periods of time to be spent working at customer sites both in the UK and abroad.


Work is received from and monitored by the Design Unit Technician Supervisor and Design Unit Engineers with line management by the Design Unit Technician Supervisor. Projects can range from a few hours to a few months.   You must be able to plan and prioritise your own work to meet changing demands required to deliver the portfolio of Design Unit projects.


Informal enquiries can be made to Mr Dave Clipperton, Design Unit Technical Supervisor, e-mail dave.clipperton@ncl.ac.uk


Key Accountabilities


•    Carry out general technician duties in support of Design Unit activities in the manufacture, assembly and operating of test machines.

•    Plan and progress work after consultation with the Design Unit Technician Supervisor, Engineers and Research staff in the construction, instrumentation, and application of equipment.  This will be for the manufacture, instrumentation and testing of gears.

•    Share responsibility for the maintenance, servicing and cleanliness of manufacturing machines, mechanical test facilities, materials test laboratories and gear metrology laboratories.

•    Complete weekly timesheets of activities to facilitate Design Unit resource management and comply with safety issues.

•    The development, construction and commissioning/calibration of experimental equipment and rigs as required by the Design Unit with special reference made to the use of CNC machine tools for gear manufacturing and measuring machines.

•    Setting up of high-power gear test machines where safety and accuracy are of the utmost importance. Ensuring the satisfactory performance of all items prior to commencing experiments and tests for research, teaching and Industry engagement contracts. Generally assisting in running tests.

•    Assist with the training of technical and trainee technical staff in workshop procedures and the use of equipment.

•    Supervise Undergraduate and Post Graduate Students during practical work periods in Design Unit workshops and laboratories. Advise on production and construction techniques. Instruct on the correct and safe use of hand and machine tools.

•    Assume responsibility to ensure that University, School and Design Unit guidelines on safety are adhered to. Review accident and incident information and prevent their re-occurrence with consideration for best practice.

•    Ensure that the workshops and laboratories are supplied and stocked with consumable items and ordered as required so that Design Unit work is effectively supported. 

•    Advise on ordering new instruments and equipment and/or advise on ordering of new apparatus as required by relevant Design Unit staff.

•    Provide technical support for laboratory experiments carried out under a variety of research programmes encompassing a variety of subject areas and including experiments conducted as part of third strand activities.

•    Guide students in the practical issues of component manufacture and experimentation in project work and laboratory exercises.

•    Assist in the administration of the laboratories and workshops and produce technical documentation.

•    Attend and contribute to Design Unit weekly planning meetings.

The Person


Knowledge, Skills and Experience 

•    Organisational, planning, prioritisation of work and communication skills.
•    Appropriate practical and conceptual technical skills.
•    Demonstrable enthusiasm and ability to work under own initiative.
•    Problem solving abilities.
•    Team working.
•    Experience of CAD/CAM processes.
•    Experience in a technical role involved in the production and assembly of precision engineering artefacts.
•    Thorough working knowledge of relevant health and safety procedures.
•    Must be prepared to undertake Design Unit training in the Gear Geometry, Gear Metrology, Instrumentation and Gear Failure Analysis and apply this knowledge to the job role.
•    Must be willing to work on-site at client premises carrying out machine assembly and commissioning activities when required in the UK and abroad.
•    Be confident in the use  of  a  wide  range  of  mechanical,  electrical  and  electronic  test  equipment,  power, machine and hand tools, computing equipment and computing diagnostic test equipment.


Attributes and Behaviour

•    Sees other departments and colleagues as “customers” and follows through on their enquiries and requests.
•    Co-operates with others to achieve targets.
•    Strives to deliver high quality results.
•    Has a positive attitude for doing things better.
•    Formulates options and possible scenarios for consideration.
•    Uses initiative to sort things out, is enterprising in effective use of material, financial and human resources.
•    Looks at ways of overcoming obstacles rather than coming to a standstill.
•    Works in a planned and structured way.
•    Sets own priorities in conjunction with team and area objectives.
•    Ensures that activities are completed on time.
•    Ensures that others know how processes and systems work.
•    Respects the expertise and contribution of others even if own opinion is different.
•    Gets involved with team tasks.
•    Supportive of team decisions.
•    Willing to help others and share workloads.
•    Clear, concise and factually correct; gets the message across to others with an ability to tailor content of communication to the audience, changing style, tone and format as appropriate.
•    Use face-to-face communication regularly; team meetings, one to ones, informal discussions/chats, briefing sessions etc.



•    HNC or other equivalent qualification in a manufacturing or other appropriate engineering subject.

We are committed to building and maintaining a fair and inclusive working environment. The position is full time permanent position and we would be happy to discuss arrangements for flexible working.


We appoint on merit and particularly welcome applications from groups that are currently underrepresented in Technical Services such as LGBTQ+, Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) colleagues and individuals who legally identify as female.  


Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global 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 our employees and the communities they represent.  We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.


The University holds a silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality. The University also holds the HR Excellence in Research award for our work to support the career development of our researchers, and is a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe.


We understand how important the full employment package is to our colleagues at Newcastle University and we are committed to providing a great range of benefits and discounts for all.  You can learn more about what is available here on our Benefits Website page.

Requisition ID: 9901