Principal Ecologist


Bristol, Cardiff, Southampton or Belfast
Negotiable + excellent benefits package

Paid • Full Time • Permanent 028 9070 6010 Robert Magee

Sectors: ecology, conservation & wildlife

Closing date: Friday, 13th April 2018  

Has your career become stagnant? Are your skills being wasted? Considering that next step…?

As a consultancy of approx. 1650 staff, WYG are a large multi-disciplinary consultancy who work on various high-profile schemes in the south-west, including the Welsh Government Northern Access Road to provide improved access to the St Athan Aerospace Business Park, the Aston Martin car manufacturing facility and the MoD’s £1.4bn construction programme to provide accommodation for 18,700 troops. We also deliver smaller schemes such as new retail developments for Sainsbury’s and Lidl and energy schemes including solar and wind farms across the south-west region.

Our team has doubled in size over the last five years and we continue to go from strength to strength. As such, we are now looking to recruit Principal Consultants to support our established teams in Bristol, Cardiff, Southampton or Belfast. We remain focused on recruiting the best ecologists so are happy to discuss flexible working patterns, including part-time or fixed-term contracts, with the right candidate.

Our Senior team have themselves progressed through the ranks at WYG, starting as Consultant and Senior Ecologists, and now working at director level which not only demonstrates the opportunities for development that are open to our ecologists, but also makes them ideal leaders for WYG’s ecology team.

They have technical backgrounds in Ecology and EIA, including strong fieldwork skills, coupled with a clear understanding of market and client requirements and an ability to communicate across a diverse range of groups. 

As experienced ecologists, we understand how ecologists think and work and have introduced ecology-specific methods to allow the team to fulfil their potential:

  • With over 50 permanent ecologists across 13 offices, we work hard to operate as one cohesive team to minimise time away from home, maximise bespoke training and support from our in-house experts regardless of location, and to allow the best people to work on the projects that interest them and deliver them to the highest standards.
  • We encourage the development of well-rounded ecologists who can talk about all stages of a project rather than a niche area. We don’t pigeon-hole ecologists who have specific skills and instead encourage diversification of skills and the passing on of knowledge to fellow ecologists. We recently held our annual all-ecology get together over two days where our experts provided training, including out in the field, on tree assessments for bats, willow tit habitat management and the use of technology when recording data, to name but a few. 
  • Given that all grades of ecologist complete site visits and meetings, we provide cars or car allowances to every member of team, including for personal use.
  • Our Class 2 bat licence incentivisation scheme thanks those ecologists who have spent time and effort in achieving their licences – we know it’s not easy! And to show our support of personal development, we award a significant financial bonus to anyone achieving Chartered Environmentalist status through CIEEM.
  • We work alongside many other teams including Archaeologists, Landscape Architects, Masterplanners and Engineers, with our Planning colleagues providing a session at our get together to explain planning terminology. With a culture of openness, there is always someone within the business who can provide advice and support for almost any query.
  • We also have an established TOIL system which allows ecologists to manage their time to suit their specific needs.

While we have introduced methods for maximining quality and consistency across WYG, we have adapted these to suit the ecologists, allowing us to react quickly (important given the seasonality of our work) and to allow team members to make decisions about their own projects with timely support from the senior management team.

We are looking for Ecologists who have experience of projects across a diversity of sectors, with the confidence to liaise with clients and stakeholders, and who have a desire to manage and mentor other members of the team. We are keen to continue to grow so enthusiasm to support colleagues with the south-west growth strategy would be desirable. Ecologists who hold, or are close to gaining, a Natural England Class 2 bat licence (or NRW equivalent) would also be desirable.

If the timing’s not quite right for you, please continue to get in touch as we will always consider deferring your start date.

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