Specialist Senior Technician

London (Greater) (GB)
£34,502-£38,308 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance
11 Jan 2023
End of advertisement period
08 Feb 2023
Academic Discipline
Clinical, Pre-clinical & Health
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Job description

We are seeking a senior research technician to manage our newly establish Spatial Biology Hub led by Dr Anita Grigoriadis and Dr Ciro Chiappini, Guy’s Campus. King’s College London (KCL). 


Spatial multiomics approaches reveal how cells interact and organise across different tissue landscape. Having secured large-scale funding in this field, we are building a new core facility to utilise the nanoString GeoMx and CosMx Digital Spatial Profiler. The post-holder will be based within Dr Anita Grigoriadis’ group at the Cancer Centre, Guy's Hospital (KCL). 


As a Specialist Senior Research Technician, the post-holder will be required to establish workflows and provide high level technical support to the experimental work being undertaken in multiple projects in the Spatial Biology Hub. The successful candidate should have experience in supporting a core facility in a university laboratory environment and will be expected to liaise with researchers interested in Spatial Biology within and outside King’s College London. 


This role is an exciting opportunity to explore the full cellular diversity of tissue with spatial context, by applying a range of scientific techniques, in particular multiplex imaging, histology, sequence library preparation and microscopy.  Experience in one or more specialised techniques is desirable, though training will be provided as necessary. The successful candidate should be self-motivated, have good interpersonal and communication skills and the ability to work enthusiastically and effectively as part of a team. 


Experience with histological sample preparation or spatial biology will be favorably considered. 


A Specialist Senior Technician  (Grade 5: £34,502-£38,308 salary per annum, inclusive of London weighting allowance) 


The position encompasses a breadth of activities, including: 

•           To run experiments on both nanoString GeoMx and CosMx Digital Spatial Profilers . 

•           The post holder will receive relevant supervision and training in specialised techniques and will meet with their line manager on a regular basis to review results and plan experiments. Equally, once established, the post-holder should be able to work independently without the requirement for day-to-day supervision and is encouraged to contribute to the design of experiments. 

•           To act as a key liaison between researchers and Estates & Facilities Management and contractors, to ensure scheduled works can be conducted with minimum impact. 

•           To assist in the management of the maintenance of equipment and the troubleshooting of problems, arrange engineer call outs and permits to access, and facilitate scheduled maintenance visits. 

•           To provide specialist technical advice to researchers. They will be expected to establish and maintain collaborative working relationships with members of Anita Grigoriadis’ team, the wider Innovation Hub and King’s community; this will involve participation at relevant operational meetings. Where appropriate, the post-holder should provide training on specialised laboratory skills to junior staff and students. 

•                     To manage user access to the instruments by providing estimates of costs and time requirements; to arrange for the handover of samples and assist in the selection of analytical parameters. 

•           To support research projects, including conducting experiments, data analysis and presenting results. 


Information on the School of Cancer & Pharmaceutical Sciences and the Comprehensive Cancer Centre can be found at https://www.kcl.ac.uk/scps


This post will be offered on an a fixed-term contract for 5 years 

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


Key responsibilities

The post holder is a member of the School’s professional services team, providing high quality specialist technical support to the School and specific support to its education/ research activities. Working closely with their line manager(s) and lead academic, the post holder will:  

•         Provide recognised specialist technical expertise gained through experience and/or formal qualification to run a specialist technical service, using complex procedures that require considerable skill  

•         Have a solid understanding of the underlying technical/scientific theory and associated regulations for the specialist area, keeping informed about developments in the field 

•         Liaise with service users to understand their requirements and priorities, supporting service users throughout the project life cycle, including advice on project design and planning to limit waste and to set achievable timelines and accurate costs  

•         Collaborate with teams across the School/ Faculty/ university, forming a strong network across the university and with external users/suppliers  

•         Be responsible for the delivery and day-to-day management and security of the specialist technical facilities and activities, including compliance with regulations governing the service, monitoring safe working practice, completing risk assessments and adapting the working environment to reduce the level of hazard 

•         Manage/ supervise the installation, monitoring and maintenance of equipment, systems and software, with control over small budgets, stocks/stores equipment and supplies    

•         Communicate, both orally and in writing, complex information in a clear and precise fashion, synthesising and presenting complex information in a clear and precise manner  

•         Use well-developed analytical skills to identify trends and patterns, to problem-solve and inform timely and considered decisions that have an impact of up to a year and occasionally being required to resolve predictable, longer term problems 

•         Manage own workload, pattern of work and resources, and – where relevant - manage/supervise a small team, advising and providing feedback and identifying training and development needs. Be responsive to changing priorities and an evolving environment/context, maximising the efficiency of the technical support 

•         Provide advice/ guidance and, where appropriate, training to colleagues on specialist techniques, regulations and university policies/ processes 

•         To remain up to date with the relevant scientific, technical and methodological literature.  

•         To regularly participate in group meetings and present work to a wider internal and external audience.  

•         Facilitate an inclusive culture and ethos working in partnership with academic, research, other professional services staff and colleagues external to King’s 

•         Participate in cross-School/ Faculty/ university projects and initiatives for up to 10% FTE 

•         Engage actively in Continuing Professional Development and training initiatives, in line with the Technician Commitment and Research Concordat for a minimum of 10 days pro rata per year 

•         Contribute to sustainable management of resources according to green laboratory standards. 


The post holder will report to Dr Anita Grigoriadis on a day-to-day basis and dual-line managed by Dr Anita Grigoriadis and Dr Gianfranco Picco, Innovation Hub Technical Manager.


  The detail on tasks and responsibilities of the post will be provided in the job work plan, which will form the basis of the discussion during the post holder’s probationary review and subsequent PDR discussion.


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.        Minimum level 4 qualification, e.g. higher apprenticeship, HNC or other Level 4 award, plus work experience in a relevant technical/scientific post OR Considerable knowledge and skills gained through work experience in a relevant technical or scientific post 

2.        Evidence of an active commitment to career development including professional registration, such as RSci, or working towards CSci 

3.        Have extensive technical experience with an in-depth knowledge of specialist technical or scientific practices, methods and procedures applicable to the work area, underpinned by a good understanding of relevant technical/scientific theory 

4.        Full working knowledge of regulations governing area of work 

5.        Solutions-focused self-starter, with excellent planning and organisational skills, an ability to manage competing priorities and who can work with minimal supervision 

6.        Good communication, orally and in writing, along with strong interpersonal and influencing/behavioural skills 

7.        Good computer skills including Microsoft Office packages 

8.        A broad understanding of effective approaches to train and teach individuals in methodologies and techniques 

9.        Proactive and responsive to internal contacts in immediate area and across King’s and contacts outside the university (e.g. suppliers, colleagues in other HE institutions) in order to build relationships 

10.     A commitment to an excellent student experience and concern for staff and student wellbeing, along with a commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion 

11.     Have technical experience with single or multiplex imaging methodologies  

12.     Prior microscopy experience, including light, fluorescent and confocal microscopy  


Desirable criteria 

1.    Ability to supervise/advise junior team members and give feedback on performance levels, providing training/coaching where necessary  

2.    MSc awarded (or near completion) in a relevant subject 

3.    Experienced and competent at preparing DNA/RNA for next generation sequencing 

4.    Experienced and competent at preparation of tissue sections for fluorescence immunohistochemistry 

5.    Experience with managing a core facility


Further information

The post holder is a member of the School’s professional services team, providing high quality technical support to the School and specific support to its education/ research activities. Working closely with their line manager(s) and lead academic.   


The detail on tasks and responsibilities of the post will be provided in the job work plan, which will form the basis of the discussion during the post holder’s probationary review and subsequent PDR discussion. 

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