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Software Engineer Degree Apprentice – Digital Infrastructure

Science and Technology Facilities Council - UKRI
Daresbury, Warrington
£16,608 per annum rising incrementally to £22,129 in the fourth year
Closing date
12 Apr 2023

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Job Details

Science and Technology Facilities Council

Salary: £16,608 per annum rising incrementally to £22,129 in the fourth year 
Hours: Full time
Contract Type: Fixed Term (4 years)
Location: Science and Technology Facilities Council, Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington 

Are you looking for a role in Digital and Technology Solutions? 

STFC's Digital Infrastructure Group are recruiting an exciting opportunity as a Software Engineer Apprentice to join the team at the Daresbury Laboratory, Cheshire.

Scientific computing is fundamental to modern research. This broad and rapidly-advancing field involves exploiting advanced computing capabilities to understand and solve complex problems in science. We support some of the UK's most advanced scientific facilities and provide the tools that enable the scientific community to discover and deliver vital research.

The Digital Infrastructure Group deliver first-class IT support and services that underpin the STFC scientific programme of activities and partner organisations. They provide a comprehensive network and communications environment to support the science undertaken by STFC.

This opportunity will gain first-hand experience working as part of a professional, but friendly team, supported by theoretical and practical learning. You will make an impact early on in the apprenticeship, where you’ll also learn the specialist skills tailored to the knowledge, skills and behaviours required as a computing professional. 

You'll also get to meet and collaborate with other departments and apprentices during the apprenticeship.

About an Apprenticeship at STFC

With training and support from experts in their fields, you’ll be enthusiastic about developing your knowledge, skills and behaviours, working towards completing your apprenticeship, gaining appropriate qualifications whilst making a real difference in your role. 

If working with innovative technologies on world-leading research isn’t enough, you will develop both professionally and as a critical member of the team in an environment you won’t find anywhere else. 

Our dedicated Apprenticeship Team will support you every step of the way, helping you make the most of your opportunities and to achieve the goals you already have – and those you have yet to discover! 

We provide an opportunity to really pursue your interests and passion. You’ll have access to additional core skills development, access to a community of apprentices across the site, annual Apprentice awards evenings, a number of active sport and social groups across campus, and potential opportunities for overseas placements. 

STFC offers a benefits package crafted to provide an excellent work/life balance including 30 days’ annual leave, an outstanding index linked pension scheme, 10.5 public and privilege days, Christmas closure and flexible working hours. 

For a list of our full benefits, please visit here:


About the role and a summary of key duties & responsibilities

Responsibilities will include:

  • Communicate and work with fellow team members on a daily basis
  • Communicate with users, scientists, engineers and management to understand their requirements and translate these into a specification
  • Take an active role in both technical and non-technical meetings
  • Show initiative especially regarding learning new things
  • Work independently at times and ask questions if unsure
  • Take responsibility for ensuring your work does what is needed and meets the quality criteria specified
  • Write documentation for technical and non-technical users
  • Analyse evidence and data in order to solve problems
  • Help deploy solutions to production and help provide support after release
  • Use a variety of tools and technologies used by the teams to develop and manage software and computer systems
  • Present a topic to a small group of people and answer questions
  • Participate in the wider department and STFC apprentice training programme
  • Partake in the promotion activities for STFC and STEM

Alongside this, the successful candidate will undertake professional development and training through a mix of day-release and block teaching with Manchester Metropolitan University completing the Digital Technology Solutions Professional Apprenticeship – Software Engineering. Travel expenses will be provided when attending in-person teaching. 

The modules to complete will be a combination of general computing principles applicable to all occupational areas, with specialist units focused on the requirements of developing competencies in a Software Engineering role such as:

Year 1:

  • Introduction to Programming
  • Introduction to Business Systems
  • Database Fundamentals
  • Digital Technology in Organisations and Society

Year 2:

  • IT Project Management
  • Networks and Security
  • Advanced Programming
  • Introduction to Web Development

Year 3:

  • Software Design and Architecture
  • Full Stack Web Development
  • Enterprise Programming
  • Operating Systems

Year 4:

  • Software Testing and Quality Assurance
  • Portfolio
  • Optional Unit*
  • Synoptic Project

*a range of optional units will be available to choose from in your 3rd year

In the final year, you will also complete a work-based project before undertaking the End Point Assessment. The End Point Assessment will include a presentation between the university and STFC, covering the work-based project, your approach, outcome and the skills, knowledge and behaviours demonstrated. This will be assessed as part of the overall project assessment. 

You will be supported in developing a portfolio of work-based projects to build and demonstrate the required skills, behaviours and knowledge required for this apprenticeship. 

The qualifications that will be achieved are:

  • BSc (Hons) in Digital & Technology Solutions
  • Level 6 Digital & Technology Solutions Professional 

To be eligible for this apprenticeship, we are looking for the following: 

Essential criteria:

  • Achieved or predicted to achieve 5 GCSE passes at Grade C/4 or above including Maths, English and a STEM subject by September 2023 (or equivalent qualifications) 
  • A minimum of 104 UCAS tariff points at A Level ( x 3 subjects at grades BCC or above) or an equivalent Level 3 qualification i.e. BTEC National Diploma (D,M,M). Please ensure that the subjects studied and results are included within your CV
  • Good written communication skills as demonstrated in your CV and cover letter 
  • Some knowledge of and enthusiasm for computer hardware and/or software. Your CV and/or cover letter should give example(s) of personal or school projects that involved learning about and using a computer system and what you enjoyed 
  • Desire to develop personally and professionally. Your cover letter should explain why you have applied for this computing apprenticeship scheme and any activities you are involved in to help you develop personally and professionally 
  • Right to live and work in the UK 
  • Some knowledge of computer hardware and computer systems. As a minimum a successful candidate will be able to describe the basic components of a computer system and be aware of the range of computer operating systems
  • Ability to examine evidence and data in order to understand it and solve problems. As a minimum, a successful candidate will be able to work systematically through straightforward problems, examine data, and link it to their understanding of computer systems in order find the cause of problems 
  • Excellent communication skills and ability to work in a team

Desirable criteria:

  • A/AS level (or equivalent) in computing or other technical discipline. Please give subjects and results in CV
  • Some very general knowledge of Windows, Apple and/or Android devices 
  • Experience in customer-focused roles such as retail, OR examples of how you’ve helped others in educational or personal settings 
  • A flair for communicating in clear, positive terms; understanding that helping staff of all abilities understand problems and solutions is central to successful customer service.

What could you achieve with the world-leading facilities and experts of one of Europe’s largest research organisations by your side? 

Join us and discover what’s possible. 


As part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) supports research in astronomy, physics and space science, and operates world-class research facilities for the UK.

Find Us
01793 442000
Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
Harwell Campus
OX11 0QX
United Kingdom

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