Graduate Scientist


About the Role

Are you interested in a career in scientific research?

NPL - Our People
Ready to be part of something amazing? Read more about our values and take a look at our current opportunities on Gradcracker.

At NPL, we are looking for graduates with a real passion for tackling some of the biggest challenges in industry, energy, the environment, and healthcare to join our Science and Engineering groups. We pledge that NPL will be a place to create a positive impact for the world and your career.

As a Scientist on the two-year NPL Graduate Programme you will join one of our departments – which all push the boundaries of what is possible. You’ll be matched based on your background and interest.

Within your department, you’ll rotate 2 or 3 times to ensure you are getting great exposure of the work and projects happening. These rotations will fast track your development through a mix of on-the-job learning, training, and networking and aim to respond to the national challenges of:

  • Prosperity: delivering measurement solutions to maximise innovation and prosperity in advanced manufacturing
  • Security and resilience: managing the risks to our national security and resilience infrastructure
  • Environment: science-directed measurement solutions for environment climate action and a sustainable future
  • Health: supporting healthcare, life science and the bio economy

You will be based at our Teddington site* and will be working on either laboratory, or data-based projects through practical and theory-based learning. Once you have completed the two-year programme you will join us as a permanent Scientist, with a working knowledge of complementary areas.

We will provide the space and support so you can be the best version of yourself, as well as the tools to navigate the different demands of our work.

*We will consider candidates who would like to be based from our Strathclyde hub or one of our other regional hubs.

Graduate placements are available in the following departments:

  • Time and Frequency
  • Data Science
  • Quantum Technologies
  • Electromagnetic & Electrochemical Technologies: Electrochemistry Group Electromagnetic Technologies Group
  • Chemical and Biological Sciences
  • Medical, Marine and Nuclear
  • Atmospheric and Environmental Science
  • Thermal and Radiometric Metrology
  • Materials and Mechanical Metrology
  • Engineering

As a Graduate Scientist, you will have the chance to collaborate with a variety of teams, which will help build and grow your network. You’ll be expected to use logical thinking skills for designing and following a work plan, along with developing technical documents as well as scientific publications.

You’ll have the opportunity to get involved with analysing complex data sets such as (e.g., satellite imagery or instrument readings) which may lead to developing and creating new software tools. A key part of the role will be ensuring you are adhering to our Health & Safety and Quality systems which will help you produce accurate and repeatable results.

You will also be involved in supporting our community benefit activities – this may be going to local schools, supporting community activities, or helping at large NPL events. We will provide you with the opportunity to be part of a caring and daring community that truly values you and your contribution.

About You

For this role we encourage applications from individuals who can complement our existing teams and bring fresh perspectives. We believe that diversity of perspective is key to sparking the creativity needed to respond to the challenges at NPL and are seeking individuals, particularly women, those with disabilities and minority ethnic candidates, who can bring their backgrounds and personal experiences to the team.

To be successful in the Graduate Scientist role, you will have the following skills and qualifications:

  • Have achieved or be on target to achieve a degree, or equivalent in Physics, Chemistry, Maths, Engineering, Biological Sciences, or a related field
  • Proven ability to work in a team to achieve a common goal, with good communication and collaboration skills
  • Enjoy problem solving and can demonstrate critical thinking, assessing the pros and cons of your approach
  • Have written scientific technical reports during your studies, or are willing to learn if your experience was acquired in a different setting
  • Ability to complete work which requires a high level of attention to detail
  • Understand the value of providing good customer service, delivering high quality work and proactive communication
  • Committed to your personal development and taking on learning opportunities to get the most from the role
  • Be eligible to live and work in the UK at the time you start employment (we cannot provide visa sponsorship at this time)

About the process

  • Application form with cover letter, explaining what attracts you to the NPL Graduate Programme
  • Your first interview will be conducted via Microsoft Teams
  • If you’re selected, you’ll attend an assessment centre, which will be held at our Teddington site in Spring 2024
  • If successful, we look forward to welcoming you in Sept 2024!
  • We are now working in a hybrid way. We strive to offer a great work life balance - if you are looking for flexible options, we will try to make this work where possible.

What we offer

  • Competitive starting salary 
  • Performance related pay review in 2025 (non-contractual)
  • 27 days annual leave + bank holidays
  • 6 – 12 month tailored placements for the duration of the programme
  • Pension scheme with a minimum 5% employer contribution (9% employer contribution if you elect to contribute 6%)
  • Social and networking events with other graduates on the programme
  • Paid disability leave
  • Access to a wide array of learning and development opportunities
  • Employee assistance programme
  • Interest free loans (Up to £5k for season ticket loans, house purchase deposit and rental deposit)
  • Bike4Work scheme
  • Recognition awards
  • Civil Service Sports and Leisure discounts
  • Free parking on site
  • Located in South West London, our main site in Teddington is one of the most advanced metrology facilities in the world

If it sounds like this is the role for you, we look forward to hearing from you!


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  • Deadline
    December 15th, 2023
  • Starting
    September 2024
  • Salary
    Competitive + benefits
  • Degree required
    All grades
  • Location
    Teddington (South West London) (Hybrid)
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Preferred Disciplines...
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Maths
  • Physics
Also Accepting...
  • Most Engineering disciplines
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