Graduate Opportunity

Graduate Project Manager - Astronomy Technology Centre


Save to shortlist Saved to shortlist Apply now

The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) is one of Europe’s largest research organisations. We’re trusted to support, enable and undertake pioneering projects in an amazing diversity of fields. Through world-class facilities and people, we’re driving ground-breaking advances in science, technology and Engineering. 

Welcome To STFC

Executive Chair Mark Thomson talks about the exciting research being done at the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC). The Science and Technology Facilities Council is one of Europe's largest multidisciplinary research organisations supporting scientists and engineers world-wide. Through research fellowships and grants, it is responsible for funding research in UK unive

STFC is one of nine organisations that have been brought together to create UK Research and Innovation (UKRI); a new organisation with a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation.

Our graduates join us in a permanent position, starting a real job from day one. Graduates enjoy two years of formal soft skills together with technical training and development, as well as a direct route to professional accreditation. STFC graduates have the opportunity to build on their degree, taking their understanding, knowledge and skills to a new level in a dynamic, creative, collaborative culture.

STFC consists of several distinct departments which each focus on a different specialism within science, technology, innovation and support, yet work together to achieve STFC’s grand ambitions. Different departments may look for graduates with similar skills, so you should consider which role/s are most suitable to you, and apply for up to two of these.

The UK ATC, located at the Royal Observatory Edinburgh, is the national centre for the design and production of astronomical technology. We design and build instruments for many of the world's major telescopes. We also project-manage UK and international collaborations. Our scientists carry out observational and theoretical research into fundamental questions such as the origins of planets and of galaxies.

Current projects at the UK ATC include; Harmoni instrument for the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), which will be the largest optical and infra-red telescope ever built. Mid InfraRed Instrument (MIRI) for the James Webb Space Telescope, NASA’s flagship successor to Hubble. Projects of this size and complexity require close collaboration of many different international partners, which provides a unique challenge with respect to the project management. 

Summary of Duties & Responsibilities

As a Graduate Project Manager at the UK ATC, the post holder will be expected to work within teams across a wide range of projects, according to the processes and procedures in place at the UK ATC which are based around the PMI Body of Knowledge standards and the STFC Project Management guidelines.

Working within a matrix organisation alongside engineers, technicians and scientists, and reporting to the Head of the Project Management Group at the UK ATC, the main duties will be to:-

  • Project Planning & Risks: Support the Senior Project Manager and the Work Package Managers by facilitating the planning, tracking of progress, and status reporting of all key tasks at the UK ATC against the project delivery date. Initially, this will involve tasks such as schedule capture and maintenance, closing-out actions, identifying delays and compiling progress reports etc. As experience is gained, other duties will be required including critical path identification and control, and risk register analysis
  • Project Finance: Assist in the set-up of work package budgets against estimates, then monitor actual project spend at the UK ATC in terms of effort and material cost against the budgets, reporting status as required to the Senior Project Manager
  • Stakeholder Reporting: Compile information in draft form to assist the Senior Project Manager in the reporting of project status to all stakeholders and customers
  • Consortium Management: Using the experience gained from UK ATC specific work packages, monitor and control schedule and costs incurred on work packages external to the UK ATC within the project Consortium. This will involve tracking institute schedule updates and feeding the date back into the master schedule; following-up on actions, especially risk mitigation actions; checking institute financial returns against their budgets and consolidating them into the overall finance plan
  • Procurement & Contract Management: Produce and implement procurement plans, work with procurement staff to raise orders, then track all key items towards delivery according to contract terms and conditions.
  • Project Management of Small Projects: Be responsible for the cost and delivery, to the required specification and standards, of some small scale short duration projects.

Note that some of these tasks will involve UK/international travel to consortium institutes external to the UK ATC.

Job Requirements 

  • Obtained first degree Bachelors or Masters, (not doctorate) in a STEM subject in either 2018, 2019 or be due to receive it in 2020 
  • Expected or have achieved a 2:1 or above 
  • The right to live and work in the UK.

Organisation Description

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. 

The Science and Technology Facilities Council is a world-leading multi-disciplinary science organisation, and our goal is to deliver economic, societal, scientific and international benefits to the UK and its people – and more broadly to the world.


How to Apply

Job ID Number: IRC250640

In order to apply for this role you must have:

  • Obtained your first degree bachelors or Masters, (not doctorate) in a relevant subject in either 2018, 2019 or be due to receive it in 2020.
  • Expected or have achieved a 2:1 or above.
  • The right to live and work in the UK.

Please apply online only. Please submit a CV and cover letter outlining your suitability for this role. Please ensure that your name and the IRC reference are included in the file name description of each document uploaded.

Closing date: 27th October 2019
Interviews will be held at one of our assessment centres in December or January.

Save to shortlist Saved to shortlist
If asked, remember you found this job on Gradcracker!

Don't forget...

Give yourself the edge...
If you Follow us, attach/link your Follow Certificate to your application.
Application feedback...
We've signed the Gradcracker feedback pledge.
Find out more

Opportunity Overview

  • October 27th, 2019
  • £26,932 + benefits
  • 2:1 and above
  • Edinburgh
    (Show map)

Disciplines accepted...

  • All STEM disciplines

The App

Download it and follow us.
You'll be the first to know.

Employee Profiles

Thomas Dack - Scientific Computing Graduate

"STFC offers the chance to work at a world-leading research organisation with a range of..."

Matt Capstick - Mechanical Graduate Engineer (ISIS)

"At STFC there is the potential for working on a wide range of projects in interesting..."
Meet more of our employees »

Watch our videos

Watch more of our videos »

More on our Hub

View our blogs

Read more of our blogs »