KINGS COLLEGE LONDON

Deputy Unit Manager - Hodgkin BSU

Location
London (Greater)
Salary
£38,826 - £45,649 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance
Posted
12 Jan 2022
End of advertisement period
07 Feb 2022
Ref
039395
Contract Type
Permanent
Hours
Full Time

Job Description

Biological Services provide facilities, services, and advice for all research scientists within King's College London who need to carry out research using animals. Such work is ethically reviewed, carefully regulated, and kept to a minimum within the overall objectives of advancing knowledge in biomedical research. Alternatives to research involving animals are always used where possible.  The post holder will work as part of a dedicated team, alongside skilled professionals committed to finding new cures for major diseases.  They will support the Unit Manager in the management and smooth running of the Hodgkin BSU, engendering a culture of care within the unit and providing an excellent level of service in support of scientific research at King’s.  Key responsibilities will include the maintenance, care and welfare of animals, ensuring compliance with Home Office regulations and the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986, as well as liaising with academic and research staff that use the BSU, to ensure that appropriate services are offered and to assist in the provision of those services. Line management responsibility will be assumed in the absence of the Unit Manager.  The post holder will need a flexible approach to work and be able to work independently and under supervision, as required, following appropriate training. The individual must be willing to make use of IT systems to ensure accurate record keeping.

This post will be offered on an indefinite contract  contract.

This is a full-time post - 100% full time equivalent.

 

Key Responsibilities

  • Act as Deputy Unit Manager in the Hodgkin BSU and provide an excellent level of service to support scientific research.
  • Communicate with the Unit Manager on matters relating to the smooth running of the BSU and ensure the facility is maintained in accordance with Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 and health & safety regulations.
  • In conjunction with the Unit Manager, manage the assigned BSU including the supervision of staff and management of the facilities of the BSU.
  • Liaise with academic and research staff that use the BSU to ensure that appropriate services are offered, and to assist in the provision of those services.
  • In the absence of the Unit Manager, be expected to communicate relevant issues to the Establishment Licence Holder, Named Veterinary Surgeon and Home Office Inspector.
  • In the absence of the Unit Manager, to actively participate in the local Animal Welfare and Ethical Review Board (AWERB) and BSU User Groups.
  • Be able to identify ill health or abnormal behaviour and biosecurity problems, communicating clearly in the appropriate language to licensees, recording as appropriate and to the Named Veterinary Surgeon.
  • Lead a team and have local authority for the BSU staff at grades 2-5, who must work closely together each day to make the rota system work.
  • Be expected to maintain high standards of performance and be responsible for staff performance at local level, with reference to the Unit Manager as appropriate.
  • Ensure the BSU operates in an efficient and dynamic manner, prioritising tasks allocated to technical staff so they can carry out and complete their duties as effectively and as efficiently as possible.
  • Be responsible for ensuring all husbandry duties performed by BSU staff are carried out while following the relevant SOPs and rota.
  • Provide information to the BSU management so that decisions can be made on related matters, including legislative issues covered by the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act and associated Codes of Practice, health and safety etc.
  • Alert the BSU management to any issues that could impact on animal welfare or matters outside of their remit.
  • Be required to attend the BSU in the event of an out of hours emergency, taking appropriate action as the role holder sees fit.
  • In the absence of the Unit Manager, be expected to run the BSU on a day-to-day basis and be the main contact for the research teams using the facility.
  • Always ensure the highest standards of animal welfare, including out of normal hours, while projecting the ethical principles of the 3Rs (Reduction, Refinement and Replacement).
  • Take an active part in animal husbandry and experimental procedures.
  • Liaise directly with BSU "customers" such as researchers or technical staff from other departments who have animals within the BSU.
  • Be able to answer questions raised by the Home Office Inspector on their unannounced visits; a deep understanding of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act and current project licences is therefore required.
  • May be expected to train Biological Services staff and researchers in a number of procedures
  • May be expected to perform experimental procedures, including surgery, and liaise with the personal and project licence holders as required.
  • In conjunction with the Unit Manager, be expected to delegate other technical staff to assist licensees as required.
  • Ensure that accurate records, both written and electronic, are made and when performing licensed procedures under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986.
  • Be able to interpret the implication of draft project licences, especially the Category E Section, on both the animal and the facility.
  • Analyse requests from research staff for the breeding and provision of mice to ensure experiments can be carried out efficiently. This may involve devising complex breeding strategies.  In conjunction with the Unit Manager, the role holder would be expected to be responsible for the supervision of the technical staff in their BSU and to play a full role in their training, particularly in relation to experimental procedures.
  • Actively participate in formal and informal meetings and briefings of the BSU staff.
  • Advise researchers accordingly where they may have more experience of basic animal handling techniques and experimental procedures than some of those who may use the unit.
  • Hold a personal licence under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 and be able to carry out procedures on animals such as ear clipping, taking blood, injection of substances, surgical etc. Balancing the needs of the research versus the allowed adverse effects under the various severity bandings under the project licences can be demanding.
  • Be required to ensure that when euthanasia is required, it is carried out as humanely as possible while conforming to Home Office Guidelines and experimental requirements.
  • Be trained in health and safety aspects and be aware of issues such as laboratory animal allergens (LAA), using electrical equipment in a wet environment, correct method of lifting, control of hazardous chemicals, correct disposal of clinical waste etc.
  • The role holder should be sensitive towards all animal care staff, some of whom will be inexperienced in animal technology and possibly in a workplace situation. This support is especially critical when dealing with aspects involving experimental procedures and euthanasia.
  • The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.
  • The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.

 

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.

Skills, knowledge, and experience

Essential criteria

1.       In depth knowledge of Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act.

2.       Knowledge of Health & Safety legislation.

3.       Experience of breeding techniques, anaesthesia, euthanasia, removal of body fluids, etc.

4.       Understanding of the principles and methods of biosecurity and containment.

5.       Significant experience of working in a biological services unit.

6.       Ability to work under pressure in a busy and demanding environment

7.       Punctuality and regular attendance at work.

8.       Willingness to work in any unit on any campus as directed.

9.       Ability to train and supervise junior staff.

10.   Comprehensive computer skills

11.   Commitment to a career in animal technology.

12.   Commitment to continuing professional development (CPD).

 
 

Desirable criteria

1.       Qualification in animal technology to MIAT/level 3.  An equivalent qualification or experience may be considered.

2.       Degree in biological or related subject.

3.       Registered Animal Technologist (RAnTech) or similar professional registration.

4.       Training in supervisory management skills.

5.       Experience of staff supervision and management.

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