Operations and administrative assistant/s

Background

Sense about Science is a unique campaigning charity that challenges the misrepresentation of science and evidence in public life. We advocate openness and honesty about research findings and work to ensure the public interest in sound science and evidence is recognised in public discussion.

We’ve changed many debates about science and evidence over the past 15 years by involving the public and researchers in challenging misleading claims. We introduced reviews of whether government is transparent about its use of evidence in policy proposals and run Evidence Week in the UK parliament which allows researchers to present their cutting-edge research directly to MPs and Peers. We lead the public campaign Ask for Evidence, helping people use scientific questioning to navigate debates and as the Covid-19 pandemic unfolded, Sense about Science led public calls for transparency regarding the government’s response to the situation.

The need for greater respect for the public interest in sound science and evidence has never been more apparent than during the pandemic so it’s an exciting time to join Sense about Science. Do you have what it takes to help us.

The Operations and administrative assistants will contribute to our work through improving our internal systems, tools and processes across the organisation. You will be responsible for ensuring that our documents, public resources, training materials, presentations and speeches etc are filed appropriately and catalogued so they can be located easily. You will also be responsible for ensuring that our website is regularly updated with the latest news and materials. Sense about Science works with volunteers to assist in our public engagement work and you will be responsible for helping to articulate a clear and efficient process for recruitment of a diverse range of people. You will also support on a range of other administrative tasks including invoice tracking and liaising with supporters, as well as providing executive support to the Director.

Person specification

You should be educated to a degree level, ideally in the natural or social sciences and have very strong IT, organisational and administrative skills. Experience of using databases would be an advantage. Ideally you should have an interest in science and current affairs. You will need excellent interpersonal skills. You should be able to effectively prioritise and manage your workload and have excellent attention to detail. Sense about Science is a busy and fast-paced organisation so you’ll need to be able to demonstrate flexibility and ability to use your own initiative.

Employability support

The employees will be assigned a manager wiuth whom they will be in frequent contact. They are likely to have daily contact supplemented with, at least a one hour long catch-up meeting per week. We also have monthly team planning meetings in which the employees will be able to reflect on, and evaluate their work and receive constructive feedback, They will be able to discuss their personal goal/s for the job with their manager and look for specific tasks and activities which will help them achieve these. They will also get advice and support on developing their CV, writing a covering letter and interview techniques.

In terms of specific skills training the applicants will also gain an understanding of the following:

  • How to communicate effectively within a team
  • Understanding of appropriate workplace behaviour and culture
  • Project management training – how to set appropriate goals, define your deliverables, create a project schedule/timeline, communicating your plans
  • Fundraising training – How to prepare and write a compelling funding proposal
  • WordPress training – web publishing training to create a websites or blogs

They will also be able to sit in on the training sessions that SaS run for our partners covering topics such as policy engagement, peer review, and public engagement in understanding scientific issues.

Applicants need to be in receipt of universal credit and can be referred through their work coach.