Workplace Manager (Chemistry Laboratories)


Location: Wiltshire

Job Type: Full time


About the job

Job summary

Are you passionate about health and safety and facility management, have strong organisational skills and are great at building positive working-relationships?

Do you want to play a part in protecting the UK against some of the most serious threats?

We have vacancies for three Workplace Managers in Chemistry Laboratories who ensure that the research within our high-hazard workplaces is completed safely and fulfils all applicable legislative and regulatory requirements.

As a Work Place Manager in Dstl you will be suitably qualified and trained to manage the operation of a defined workplace(s), specific activities and their related hazards. You will also role provide the key interface between the setting of work requirements and the implementation into a facility or work area.

Dstl recognises the importance of diversity and inclusion as people from diverse backgrounds bring fresh ideas. We are committed to building an inclusive working environment in which each employee fulfils their potential and maximises their contribution.

We particularly welcome female and ethnic minority applicants and those from the LGBTQI community, as they are under-represented within Dstl at these levels.

Job description

In this role:
  • You will be working alongside our world leading scientists, and in close liaison with facility management providers, integral to ensuring the safety and upkeep of our laboratory facilities. This will involve working as part of a highly skilled team to ensure compliance with a wide range of regulatory partners and statutory requirements (ie HSE, OPCW, radiological protection requirements).
  • You will be a part of the wider management team responsible for safe systems of working, and ensuring that the workplace is safe and fit for purpose.
  • You will allocate work space in chemistry laboratories to scientists and ensure these spaces are safe and fit for purpose.
  • You will ensure that all defects and breakdowns relating to the workplace and building infrastructure, are reported to the facility management provider in a timely manner.
  • You will liaise closely with the facility management provider to ensure that all reactive and preventative maintenance is closely co-ordinated to ensure both the safety of all personnel, whilst minimising down time.
  • You will ensure hazards and risks arising from activities are as low as reasonably practicable.
  • You will be responsible for ensuring the laboratory equipment is safe to use and fit for purpose and ensuring that waste is stored and disposed of correctly.
  • In liaison with the facility management provider, you will make certain that statutory and internal inspections are completed at specified intervals and any identified actions are addressed.
  • You will be the point of contact within the workplace for Health, Safety, Environmental, and Security issues.
  • You may be encouraged to support out-of-hours emergency call-out cover as required (usually one week in four and subject to additional payment).

Person specification

to succeed in these roles you'll need:

Knowledge, Skills & Experience Required:

  • Experience of managing health, safety and environment aspects within a work area
  • Experience of hazard management, risk assessment and risk management
  • Experience of providing advice on Health, Safety and Environmental matters
  • Relevant experience of working in an environment with health, safety or environmental hazards

    Personal Qualities:

  • Ability to communicate with a range of stakeholders
  • Ability to influence and lead others
  • Ability to collate and translate information from a range of areas
  • Ability to work with others as part of a team

Important Information

Our work in defence, security and intelligence requires our employees to be UK Nationals who are able to gain a high level of security clearance to undertake the projects we are involved in to protect us from security threats. For this reason, only UK Nationals will be able to apply for this role. If you are an international or dual-national candidate, and you think you have the skills we need, please consider applying to any of our government, security or defence partners.

This role will require full UK security clearance and you should have resided in the UK for the past 5 years. For some roles Developed Vetting will also be required, in this case you should have resided in the UK for the past 10 years.


NEBOSH National General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety / IOSH Managing Safety


We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Leadership
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Managing a Quality Service
  • Making Effective Decisions
  • Delivering at Pace


Alongside your salary of £35,970, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory contributes £9,711 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.


Dstl’s full range of great benefits can be found in the information pack which includes:

  • Financial: An excellent pension scheme starting from 26% employer contribution (find out more here). In Year Rewarding Achievement bonuses and thank you vouchers. Rental deposit scheme and cycle to work scheme.

  • Flexible working: Options include alternative working patterns such as; compressed hours (e.g. working a 4 day week/ 9 day fortnight), job shares and annualised hours (agreed number of hours per annum paid monthly i.e. working term-time only).

  • Working hours: Flexibility around your working day (e.g. start time, finish time). Ability to bank hours in a 12 month reference period including the ability to accrue and use 3 days per calendar month.

  • Where you work: Depending on your role, blended working may be available including remote working to suit you and your team. This can be discussed at interview.

  • Annual leave: 25 days pro rata (rising to 30 after 5 years) plus 8 public holidays with the ability to buy/sell 5 additional days per annum.

  • Family: Maternity, adoption or shared parental leave of up to 26 weeks with full pay, an additional 13 weeks statutory pay and a further 13 weeks unpaid

  • Learning and Development: Dstl encourages and supports charterships, accreditations and provides employees access to fully funded apprenticeships up to level 7 (Masters Degree). Dstl will pay for 2 memberships with relevant bodies/institutions. Employees also have access to Civil Service Learning.

  • Facilities: Onsite parking, EV Charging points, restaurants, cafés and gyms.

Things you need to know

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles (opens in a new window), and will assess your Behaviours and Experience.

Sifting of applications will take place in the week commencing the 2nd October 2023 with Interviews scheduled for the week commencing 16th October 23.

Interviews will consist of delivery of a presentation by the candidate and a selection of technical and behavioural based questions. The presentation title will be 'My approach to occupational Health and Safety". This presentation is to be no longer than 10 minutes, if selected for interview you will be asked to send your presentation to the recruitment team prior to the interview.

We want you to have your best chance of success in our recruitment process, so If at any stage of the application process you would like help or assistance please contact the Dstl Recruitment Team and we will do all we can to support you.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.


Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.
Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check (opens in a new window).

See our vetting charter (opens in a new window).
People working with government assets must complete baseline personnel security standard (opens in new window) checks.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK nationals only.

This job is not open to candidates who hold a dual nationality.

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code (opens in a new window) sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles (opens in a new window).
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.
The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.
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