Senior Staff Scientist – SciOps at Wellcome Sanger Institute

About the role:

You will play a key part in the delivery of Research project work for the development and improvement of existing and novel nucleic acid sequencing technologies and related biochemical approaches, in particular for the study of cancer and somatic mutations. This involves the design of methods that are suitable for deployment in a high-throughput format, and the close collaboration with Technical Development and operational teams to ensure their efficient transition into a production environment in Scientific Operations.

In addition; 

  • You will work with other members of the SciOps Research and Technical Development teams to contribute to strategic thinking, project prioritisation and resource allocation.
  • You will keep up to date with the latest technological developments through literature review, site visits and attendance at science & technology meetings.
  • You will initiate and manage collaborations with companies and scientists (both internal and external) to research, test and provide feedback on their latest products and developments.

About you: 

You will have a diverse range of research experiences and technical skills in experimental molecular biology and biochemistry, especially in the field of next-generation DNA sequencing. You will be an experienced research scientist with a demonstrable ability to work independently and as part of a multidisciplinary team.

About the team:

The Sequencing Operations teams support the research of all scientists at the Wellcome Sanger Institute in their generation and use of genomic data to understand the underlying biology of health, disease and evolution. From cancer to the individual cells that make up a human body, and from parasitic worms to endangered species, our DNA sequencing teams employ specialist knowledge to apply a range of DNA sequencing technologies.

The Sequencing Operations Research and Development group is the entry point for new technologies to the Institute, especially related to high-throughput nucleic acid sequencing chemistries and instrumentation. The team assesses ad develops new methods and procedures to maximise the efficiency, quality and throughput of all incoming machinery for the benefit all Institute researchers

Essential Skills

Technical Skills:

  • Ph.D. degree in a biological science (or Masters degree with significant experience in the field) or equivalent expertise in a research/commercial setting
  • A recognized expert with considerable and demonstrable proficiency in molecular biology, preferably in a field relating to cancer and/or analysis of genetic variation, with a clear track record in the field.
  • Proven ability to independently develop and optimize new scientific methods.
    • Practical and theoretical understanding of DNA sequencing, genotyping, DNA extraction, nucleic acid preparation, liquid handling, single cell genomics, organoid and/or cellular analysis.
    • Knowledge and experience of next­generation DNA sequencing
    • Ability to develop and optimize new scientific methods.

Competencies and Behaviours:

  • Proven ability to work independently.
  • Proven effectiveness as a team player.
  • Ability to create ideas, initiate a program of work and draw conclusions.
  • Strong interpersonal skills with ability to influence, negotiate and build positive relationships. 
  • Excellent communication at all levels, including oral presentation, scientific writing skills, and active listening.
  • Ability to communicate complex scientific concepts in a clear and concise manner.
  • High degree of fluency in IT skills, software, automation and robotics.
  • Ability to teach, train and transition new concepts and methods.
  • Excellent analytical and troubleshooting skills.
  • Excellent organizational and record keeping skills.
  • Self-Starting and self-motivated.
  • Adaptable, enthusiastic and approachable.
  • Strong attention to detail.
  • Even tempered with a strong resolve to complete projects.
  • Honest, open and objective.
  • Emotionally intelligent and self-aware
  • Supportive and positive.

Ideal Skills

Technical Skills:

  • Knowledge of laboratory information management systems (LIMS)
  • Previous experience of working in a high-throughput environment
  • Experience in the application of bioinformatics tools.

Competencies and Behaviours:

  • Ability to understand and appreciate both academic and commercial drivers
  • Demonstrable appreciation of production practices

Other information

Please apply with your CV and a cover letter outlining your suitability for the role using the criteria set out above and in the job description.

About Us

The Wellcome Sanger Institute is a world leading genomics research centre. Our findings are used to improve health and to understand life on Earth.

Our benefits:

There’s an attractive benefits package on offer at the Wellcome Genome Campus. We appreciate the importance of achieving work-life balance and support this with a number of family and carer-friendly policies. Plus a flexible working policy for those who may wish to amend their working pattern or arrangement.
As well as the usual benefits you would expect, we go much further:

  • 25 days annual leave (extra 1 day to a maximum of 30 days for every year you work)
  • Auto-enrolment into a generous Group Defined Contribution Pension Scheme, with enhanced company contribution (for more information, see our Pensions page)
  • Up to 2 days annual paid volunteering leave
  • Up to 10 days paid Emergency Carers Leave per year
  • Family friendly environment including options for flexible and part-time working, an on-site Workplace Nursery salary Sacrifice Schemes for pre-school children and Summer holiday club
  • Life Assurance is accessible on day 1 for all 
  • Group Income Protection Scheme (if on a contract exceeding 12 months)
  • Enhanced maternity, parental and adoption leave
  • Access to substantial number of courses and training events onsite
  • Private Healthcare Scheme 
  • Eyecare and Dental payment plans
  • Concessions and discounts from our corporate perks site

Being part of the Wellcome Genome Campus you will be part of the beautiful working environment with an impressive range of benefits, services and facilities also including:

  • Free bus service to and from Campus, covering various routes around Cambridge, Saffron Walden and surrounding villages
  • A car-share initiative
  • Free parking
  • A number of on-site venues where you can meet, eat and socialise with colleagues
  • A thriving Sports and Social Club which provides members with subsidised access to a gym, tennis courts, sports hall, fitness classes and a vibrant social calendar of events

In 2020 we were awarded an Athena SWAN Silver Award. We will consider all individuals without discrimination and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees, where everyone can thrive.

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