General Services Assistant

Durham, United Kingdom
£17,361-£17,682 (pro-rata)
14 Apr 2021
End of advertisement period
04 May 2021
Contract Type
Fixed Term, Permanent

Accommodation & Commercial Services

Grade 2: - £17,361-£17,682 (pro-rata)
Open-Ended/Permanent - Full Time
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Closing Date: 04-May-2021, 6:59:00 AM 

Job Reference Number:  21000383
Department: Estates and Facilities Directorate
Accommodation and Commercial Services
Responsible to: General Services Team Leader
Grade: Grade 2
Salary range: £17,361-£17,682
Contract type:  2 x permanent
1 x fixed-term (until 28th February 2022)
Working arrangements:  1 x permanent: full-time (35 hours), any shift, including night shift, working any five days from seven days
1 x permanent: part-time (14 hours, term-time only (30 weeks)), working hours between 6am and 10pm, working any two days from seven days
1 x fixed-term: full-time (35 hours), any shift, working any five days from seven days
Closing date: Midnight 3rd May 2021
Interview date (if known): 19th May 2021 (via Zoom)      

The Department and role purpose

The Estates and Facilities Directorate provides a number of essential services to Durham University and is responsible for managing, maintaining and developing the infrastructure and building fabric of the various campuses, including:

  • maintaining and regularly reviewing a maintenance programme which takes account of short, medium and long term needs of all buildings and University grounds;
  • implementing the works identified and funded within the various maintenance programmes and operating a system for dealing with day-to day requirements, including the provision of an out-of-hours emergency service;
  • providing a professional, technical service to the University for the design, construction and procurement of new buildings and adaptation works to existing buildings;
  • identifying and recording the use of space and advising on ways of increasing space utilisation;
  • property and asset management;
  • acquisition and disposal of built environment related assets;
  • procuring and managing utilities and services;
  • providing postal, delivery and security arrangements and advice to the University; and
  • the delivery of a wide-range of customer-facing services, including: contract management; estates and facilities relationships management; housekeeping and cleaning, business resilience, event management; reception helpdesk; university retail; business support; health and safety; and management information.

The General Services Assistant will deliver a range of services across University premises, ensuring the University is well maintained, welcoming and a pleasant environment for students, University employees and commercial customers. The role will encompass three key areas of responsibility: basic maintenance/minor DIY tasks; a range of portering duties; and ad-hoc security.

Core responsibilities

  • Contribute within the General Services team to provide a responsive, stakeholder-focussed service for stakeholders.
  • Respond to straightforward requests for information from stakeholders.
  • Contribute to team effort with more straightforward tasks during peak work flows.
  • Follow documented service procedures, referring to more experienced colleagues with less straightforward issues.
  • Demonstrate some pre-employment familiarity with the techniques, and processes used in the General Services area.
  • Learn new skills and techniques on-the–job, working alongside more experienced team members.
  • Learn about the hazards and risks within own area of work and report incidents in accordance with recognised procedures and protocols.
  • Communicate with the General Services Team Leader, team members, other staff, students and visitors in person or using electronic tools and applications.

Role responsibilities

  • Use a range of equipment, tools, resources and digital devices to complete basic maintenance/minor DIY, portering or security duties, where necessary.
  • Learn and apply strict guidelines and risk assessments to ensure safe, secure practice when working in different environments.
  • Follow and apply strict procedures and guidelines to ensure compliance with regulations for all activities.
  • Apply escalation procedures to highlight interventions required by more experienced team members.
  • Assist team members and contractors to set-up, and dismantle specialist equipment, tools and resources, under supervision.
  • Clean and maintain specialist equipment, tools and resources, under supervision.
  • Assist team members to collect, carry and transport equipment and resources.
  • Carry out a range of tasks that require a more than standard level of physical, manual and sensory dexterity, following training, for short periods of time.
  • Wear and use protective equipment and clothing to carry out tasks on a day-to-day basis.
  • Adhere to general health, safety and security procedures for General Services, as identified in risk assessments, method statements, guidelines, etc.
  • Any other reasonable duties.

Specific Role requirements

  • Will be required to work evenings and weekends, as business demands.
  • Provide cover for absences, when given reasonable notice.
  • The role will require an element of physical manual handling, which can include lifting and transporting tools, equipment and deliveries.

Recruiting to this post

In order to be considered for interview, candidates must evidence each of the essential criteria required for the role in the person specification below (including those listed in the section ‘Realising Your Potential Approach’). 

In some cases, the recruiting panel may also consider the desirable criteria, so we recommend you evidence all criteria in your application. 

Please note that some criteria will only be considered at interview stage.

How to apply

We prefer to receive applications online.

Please note that in submitting your application Durham University will be processing your data. We would ask you to consider the relevant University Privacy Statement https://www.dur.ac.uk/ig/dp/privacy/pnjobapplicants/ which provides information on the collation, storing and use of data.

What you are required to submit

  1. A CV. A covering letter which details your experience, strengths and potential in all of the requirements set out in the Person Specification. The completed questions requested as part of the application.

For external applicants, when evidencing the Realising Your Potential Behaviour Approach elements, please use examples from your current/previous organisations in instances where the ‘University’ is referenced.

Please ensure that you submit all documentation listed above or your application will not be considered.

Contact details

For further information please contact: Lisa Blundell, Lisa.Blundell@durham.ac.uk.

At Durham University, our aim is to create an open and inclusive environment where everyone can reach their full potential and believe our staff should reflect the diversity of the global community in which we work.  We welcome and encourage applications from members of groups who are under-represented in our work force, including people with disabilities, women and black, Asian and minority ethnic communities.

We will notify you on the status of your application at various points throughout the selection process, via automated emails from our e-recruitment system.  Please check your spam/junk folder periodically to ensure you receive all emails.

Person specification - skills, knowledge, qualifications and experience required


  1. Good oral and written communication skills
  2. Basic IT skills including Microsoft Office
  3. Basic numeracy and literacy skills
  4. Experience of working under minimal direct supervision as well as in a team
  5. Experience of managing time in order to meet deadlines
  6. Ability to follow instructions, written or oral, accurately
  7. Evidence of ability to undertake basic DIY tasks
  8. Good attention to detail


  1. Evidence of personal development to maintain skills
  2. Health and safety compliance knowledge
  3. Experience of working in a buildings or estates services area.
  4. Experience of Portable Appliance Testing (PAT)
  5. Experience of working in, or with, a higher education institution

Realising Your Potential Approach

Providing Excellent Student Services and Professional Support: Providing the best quality service to all our students, customers and stakeholders. Building genuine and long-term relationships, through every day interactions, in order to drive up service standards and to enhance their experience.

  1. Actively listening and understanding routine tasks required, clarifying the details where necessary.
  2. Summarising basic information clearly and concisely.
  3. Engaging positively with customers and stakeholders.

Embracing Change: Adjusting to unfamiliar situations, demands and changing roles. Seeing change as an opportunity and being receptive to new ideas

  1. Displaying open mindedness to new ideas and proposals.
  2. Demonstrating a willingness to do things differently.
  3. Making suggestions for improvement in a positive manner.

Working Together: Working co-operatively with others in order to achieve objectives. Applying a wide range of interpersonal skills.

  1. Developing effective working relationships with colleagues.
  2. Proactively helping one another.
  3. Communicating effectively with all.

DBS Requirement: Not Applicable.