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Apprentice ICT Support Engineer

Science and Technology Facilities Council - UKRI
Didcot, Oxfordshire
Closing date
17 Dec 2021

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Role Type
Start Date
18-24 months
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  • Organisation: Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)
  • Contract Type: Fixed Term Contract
  • External Closing Date: Dec 12, 2021
  • Minimum Salary: Pound Sterling (GBP) 14,268
  • Hours: Full-time

Digital Infrastructure (DI) delivers first class IT support and services that underpin the STFC scientific programme of activities and partner organisations. The work that we do is key to protecting the organisation's digital assets and is an enabler for the work of the scientific community here at STFC. We are providing a comprehensive network and communications environment to support the work of STFC. This includes a range of technologies and environments like Voice, Data, infrastructure, Email and unified communications.

About the role

ICT is crucial to the science that STFC supports. We need keen individuals to help us in supporting the IT systems required to keep STFC running! We are recruiting for an Apprentice IT Support Engineer to work at Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) at the Harwell Campus, Oxfordshire. You will be based in a group with IT professionals where your daily duties will be varied and complemented by formal training with our apprenticeship provider, Birmingham Metropolitan College (BMet). There are opportunities for both personal and technical development and you will be supported as you work towards an Information Communications Level 3 Apprenticeship.

Specifically, this role within DI service desk team is to provide day-to-day front-end support including resolving incidents and fulfilling service requests. This is a hands-on role; as a member of the team, you will be responsible for answering the calls, creating tickets, triaging the in-coming tickets created by users and resolving incidents to minimise the end-user disruption.

You will work closely with other members of the STFC Digital Infrastructure (DI) team to ensure services are delivered efficiently and effectively, this is key to enabling the organisation to successfully deliver its core business of science. 

The apprenticeship will take 2 years to complete and you will gain essential computer IT related experience and skills throughout your apprenticeship. You will develop and expand your technical proficiencies; knowledge, skills and behaviours required to work within an IT role. You will be working as part of the Digital Infrastructure Desktop Support and Service Desk team to install and maintain desktop computers, hardware, software and portable devices, whilst providing support and assistance to staff and users throughout the site at RAL, Daresbury Laboratory and across the UK. 

In addition, you will support our High Performance Computing (HPC) Data Centre Operations, which supports STFC’s projects in big data analytics, machine learning, AI and large computational modelling. You will support the management of HPC Data Centre dealing with challenges in heating, cooling and power and application development. 

Service Desk/ Desktop Support 

  • Detailed training to support first line business support as part of Service Desk
  • To support Digital Infrastructure Service desk by call logging, categorisation, resolution and escalation.
  • To assist with the purchasing / specifying of new hardware (Laptop / Desktops) and software applications.
  • To provide software / hardware technical support.
  • Provide technical support for Video Conferencing (VC).
  • To support mobile telephony users.
  • To provide technical support by testing hardware, PC upgrades and testing non-standard build software.
  • Assistance and participation with ICT projects
  • Produce clear and concise written operating procedures and support documentation.

High Performance Computing Data Centre Operations

  • Develop electrical / cooling / data centre floor plans using Microsoft Visio or AutoCAD.
  • To provide day to day support in the Operations environment. This will include hardware power/rack/inventory check.
  • Manual tasks such as lifting floor tiles, moving equipment and assembling/dismantling racking.
  • Writing documentation of new operational services and procedures.
  • To have an understanding of monitoring systems and how to develop further.
  • Opportunity to develop Linux applications and support existing applications such as Nagios/Cacti and Raspberry Pi.
  • To assist and support existing projects. Training provided.

Contacts and Communication

  • Digital Infrastructure colleagues at all levels.
  • Other IT Service Desk personnel across all STFC sites.
  • Staff at all levels of the organisation, occasionally Directors and other Senior Management.
  • Staff at all levels in other partner and tenant organisations, UKSBS and Research Councils.

We will support you to undertake paid apprenticeship training. In addition to this and “on the job” training, you will have the opportunity to subscribe to professional online tutorial sites, attend technical courses, undertake various soft skills training, and take part in our organisation-wide apprentice networking and training events where you will meet and get to know other apprentices such as our computing, electronics, engineering and project management apprentices.

Any other Relevant Information

  • This role will require occasional travel between sites – primarily to Daresbury, Cheshire or UKRI Head Office in Swindon.
  • The role may require some manual handling of bulky and moderately heavy items.
  • The role requires the job holder to operate within a rota basis to ensure coverage to the business within agreed working hours. These are Monday to Friday 8:00am to 6:00pm. The Rota times and schedule will need to be flexible to ensure appropriate levels of cover are provided.

Person Specification


  • Minimum of 3 GCSEs at Level 4 (Grade C) or equivalent – including Maths, English and Science
  • Proven algebra knowledge applied to electrical calculations. For example calculation of kWH
  • Good written communication skills as demonstrated in your CV and Covering Letter
  • Quality of Covering Letter – particularly addressing both the essential and desirable criteria, and examples of prior knowledge/experience relevant to this apprenticeship
  • Some knowledge of and enthusiasm for computing/IT and/or hardware - your CV and/or cover letter should give example(s) of personal, school or work-based projects that involved learning about and using IT and/or hardware and what you enjoyed


  • Experience of PC-based computer systems and applications;
  • Some knowledge of Microsoft Desktop Products;
  • Some experience of configuring Smartphones;
  • Experience in using Microsoft applications, programming language and web design.
  • Qualification in a relevant IT field would be desirable, but not essential (please note this must not be higher than a Level 3 qualification i.e. Level 3 BTEC)

Please note, Interviews will take place on Wednesday 5th January.

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