Specialist Chief Technician (Workshop Engineer)

Biomedical Engineering

London, St Thomas' Hospital


  • Posted on: 17th Feb 2021
  • Salary: £38,304 - £45,026, including London Weighting Allowance
  • REF: 016484
  • Closes: 17th March 2021
  • Contract Type: Permanent
  • Hours: Full Time

Job Description

The School of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences seeks to appoint a highly experienced technical expert to manage its engineering workshop facilities.

The School is an innovative and dynamic academic environment that is about to occupy new facilities. The post holder will manage and be responsible for the smooth daily running of the new and existing workshop facilities that are pivotal in the delivery of cutting-edge medical technology to clinical practice. These facilities include manufacturing, testing, robotics integration and optics workshops, a mock operating theatre suitable for post-mortem evaluation and a clean room. They will be used to produce and evaluate novel surgical tools, computer-assisted interventions and implanted devices that are being tested prior to first in-patient studies.

We seek someone with expertise in the specialist technologies and has experience of managing a facility similar to the ones described above at King’s College London. The post holder is key to ensuring effective use of the engineering workshop facilities by all researchers and will support and contribute to the design and implementation of surgical/robotics engineering research experiments that require technical workshop expertise.

The post holder will join an established School technical team that supports the School’s facilities and specialist equipment. The post holder will lead in the management of the engineering workshop facilities, training users in safe use of specialist equipment. They will have responsibility for Health & Safety and resource management, including establishing safe working practices for the workshop as a whole and for example in the use of laser and x-ray, purchasing materials, ongoing maintenance and security of the facility and budget management. In addition, the post holder will implement Quality Management System procedures and record keeping for key equipment and will support general workshop equipment (i.e. soldering, drilling, sawing, grinding). Specialist equipment includes CNC milling equipment, 3D metal/3D plastic Printing, 3D solid modelling (CAD/CAM), EDM-machining and laser cutters.

The School is part of the Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine and consists of six academic departments: i) Surgical & Interventional Engineering, ii) Biomedical Engineering, iii) Cardiovascular Imaging, iv) Cancer Imaging, v) Imaging Chemistry & Biology, and vi) Perinatal Imaging & Health. The School’s staff and students have expertise in a range of disciplines including mechanical/ robotic/ biomedical/ optics engineers, physicists, computer scientists, mathematicians, chemists, biologists, and clinicians working together in a highly cross-disciplinary way.

This post will be offered on a fixed-term contract until 05 January 2025.

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 technical support to the School and specific support to its education/ research activities. The post holder will:

  • Provide recognised specialist and advanced technical expertise gained through experience and/or formal qualification, in a scientific/ technical specialist area, and proficient use of complex procedures that require considerable skill or physical effort with a thorough understanding of the underlying technical/scientific theory and recent advances
  • Lead innovation in the specialist field, identifying new approaches/ methodologies and adapting these to the local research/ education needs
  • Manage a specialised technical service/facilities, budgets, and operations, and a specialist team (normally at least two technical staff) where the primary focus is operating as an individual or team of technical advisors, supporting specialised teaching and/or research activity
  • Monitor staff performance, providing feedback and identifying training opportunities that will expand the colleague’s knowledge/skills and maintaining of their specialist knowledge, keeping abreast of recent developments
  • Liaise with service users to refine the service to align with changing priorities and needs, coordinating activities across a broad area
  • Manager/ supervise the installation, monitoring, maintenance and security of facilities, equipment, systems and software, with control over small budgets, stocks/stores equipment and supplies
  • Be responsive to changing priorities and an evolving environment/context, maximizing the efficiency of the technical support being provided, using critical evaluation and problem-solving capabilities to review and identify solutions
  • Take collaborative and independent decisions in a timely way that have a moderate effect on the post holder’s work and that of others for more than a year and have far-reaching, complex and long-lasting impact
  • Forge relationships with colleagues in the university and external to the university, in order to disseminate information, coordinate and deliver the required service
  • Provide advice and training on technical/scientific area of expertise, making the content understandable to a non-expert, and ensuring that this complies with university policies and processes, supplying information and support for colleagues to facilitate their work
  • Lead and manage change, implementing best practice to ensure that change is adopted
  • Regularly communicate highly complex concepts, specialist concepts and information, both orally and in writing, in a clear fashion
  • Be responsible for implementing safe working practices, managing the impact of the environment on the work and safety of users, ensuring the compliance with Health & Safety and other relevant regulations, guidance and legislation governing the facility, monitoring safe working practice, completing risk assessments and adapting the working environment to reduce the level of hazard
  • Facilitate an inclusive culture and ethos across the School teams, ensuring that Professional Services staff work in partnership with academic staff in departments/ centres/ institutes and Professional Services colleagues in the Faculty team and functional networks
  • Create an ethos of collaboration and collegiality, establishing effective communications and relationships, and encouraging staff to work in partnership with colleagues across the university, to eliminate potential barriers, enhance collegiality and develop best practice through actively contributing to King’s initiatives, including professional networks and working
  • 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.

The post holder will report to School Technical Manager, and line manager/ Academic supervisors.


All professional services staff have a professional services’ reporting line, with potential for dual line management with the academic lead – i.e. not academic line manager/s only.}

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

  • Minimum level 6 qualification, e.g. relevant undergraduate degree or equivalent, plus substantial work experience in a relevant technical/scientific post OR Proven track record with extensive work experience in a relevant technical scientific post with a managerial qualification
  • Evidence of an active commitment to professional development, such as working towards CSci
  • Comprehensive knowledge of a range of technical or scientific practices, and where relevant, scientific specialism applicable to the work area with a full understanding of the technical/scientific theory underpinning these, along with the ability to apply learnt techniques to new areas of work
  • Comprehensive knowledge of Health & Safety regulations governing area of work, and desirably also x-ray and laser related work
  • Solutions-focused self-starter, with excellent planning and organizational skills used to manage staff and facilities, identifying performance standards and establishing protocols to deliver these
  • Strong communication, orally and in writing, with strong interpersonal and influencing/behavioral skills
  • Good computer skills including Microsoft Office packages and CAD/CAM solid modelling processes
  • A broad understanding of effective approaches to train and teach individuals in methodologies and techniques
  • 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
  • A commitment to an excellent student experience and concern for staff and student wellbeing, along with a commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Experience in the use of CNC machinery (milling, lathe, etc) and other workshop equipment
  • Previous experience working within Engineering Workshops/Facilities or Managing Facilities

Desirable criteria

  • Experience of supervising/advising junior team members and give feedback on performance levels, providing training/coaching where necessary
  • Formal Health & Safety qualification e.g. NEBOSH/IOSH
  • Able and willing to provide support beyond core hours, as required
  • Able and willing to work indirectly adjacent to a cadaver facilities and/or support waste stream activities that may lead from such facilities.

Further information

Information about the School: About us | School of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences | King’s College London (kcl.ac.uk)

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