GCN Technical Officer x3

NatureSpace

Home based in England
£28,000 pa + company benefits

Paid • Full Time • Permanent

naturespaceuk.com

Sectors: conservation & wildlife, ecology

Closing date: Friday, 8th July 2022   6 days left


NatureSpace Technical Officer (3 identical posts) 

£28,000 pa + company benefits 
Full time, permanent contract.
You will be notified by 14th July if you have been selected for interview. 
Interviews will be held on 25th & 26th July. Start date 1st September 2022.

How to apply:

Send your CV and a covering letter to [email protected] before 8th July 2022.

The role(s)

This is an exciting opportunity to join a ground-breaking project that is delivering a step-change in the conservation of great crested newts. The role would suit an early-career graduate looking to join the Technical Team within a friendly and rapidly-growing company that is working with planning authorities and NGOs to deliver high-quality conservation outcomes. This is an 'outward-facing' role dealing directly with developers and their ecologists. The postholder will use GIS to analyse impacts of development on great crested newts, following defined processes and protocols. Attention to detail and a meticulous approach to assessments, report writing, and recording, as well as the ability to work within strict deadlines, are paramount for this post. Training and guidance will be provided, and day-to-day support will be available for all aspects of the work. 

Background

Natural England have granted ‘District Licences’ for great crested newts to planning authorities across England. The scheme allows planning authorities to authorise (under strictly defined terms) activities which affect newts at the same time as they grant planning permission. The District Licensing scheme has significant advantages for newt conservation (and wider biodiversity benefits) through a fully funded region-wide conservation strategy that creates high quality habitat at a landscape scale and delivers long-term management and monitoring for newts. The scheme benefits developers because the licensing process for great crested newts is simplified and streamlined.

The District Licensing scheme is administered by NatureSpace, is adopted by the Local Planning Authorities, is regulated and approved by Natural England and is supported by the country’s leading amphibian and freshwater NGOs – Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Trust and the Freshwater Habitats Trust. The habitat creation, management and monitoring are delivered by the Newt Conservation Partnership, which works with landowners and managers to create and manage ponds and other habitats across the region.

NatureSpace also work with national infrastructure providers to help them secure and deliver 'Organisational Licences' for protected species and the Technical Officers may therefore also engage with these Licences.

Main duties of the role – the Technical Officer will:

  1. Work within the NatureSpace Technical team, providing accurate quotes, assessments, reports and certificates to developers in line with the deadlines, standards and critical requirements of the district licensing scheme. All work will be conducted and delivered to the high standards expected of NatureSpace staff
  2. Liaise in a professional, confident and knowledgeable manner with: developers (prospective and current clients), ecologists and environmental and planning consultants, Local Planning Authority GCN officers, ecologists and planners, The Newt Conservation Partnership and NatureSpace colleagues
  3. Complete casework administration to agreed standards and processes, including daily maintenance of up-to-date live casework tracking and recording systems and data management, e.g. to record habitat and impact information
  4. Undertake or assist with further technical work for the company where required, for example: client meetings to discuss case specific examples, website and other media maintenance and updates, mapping work for publications, presentations, etc as required, internal IT support
  5. Report to the Technical Team manager, and will have a close working relationship with the Technical Lead and other Technical Officers, and with the area-specific ‘Newt Officers’ to ensure that assessments are accurate, informed, communicated effectively and work well within the planning and licensing framework
  6. Be responsible for managing their own workload and working independently, as part of the national team. There will be high levels of personal flexibility and responsibility given, but equally high standards of self-management (time recording etc) will be required. The Technical Officer will need to be an organised, motivated and a mature ‘self-starter’, able to manage multiple ongoing tasks. Full training and guidance will be provided for all functions, and day-to-day support will be available for all aspects of the work

The successful candidates will have: 

  1. A relevant degree (e.g. in ecology, environmental management, geography)
  2. Understanding of ecological impact assessment and biodiversity in planning
  3. An enthusiasm for ecology and conservation in the UK

Essential key skills: 

  1. An excellent communicator with good inter-personal skills - able to liaise proactively and confidently with all stakeholders
  2. A detail-focused analyst, able to deliver critical analysis of projects using knowledge of great crested newt ecology and impact assessment
  3. Understanding of Protected Species legislation and licensing in England
  4. Highly literate, able to prepare documents quickly and diligently to a high standard, following defined processes, protocols and guidance
  5. Excellent I.T. skills and high competence in GIS, preferably ArcGIS or QGIS
  6. Organised, methodical, conscientious and able to manage and enjoy high workloads - able to juggle and prioritise multiple cases, enquiries and tasks, and work efficiently to meet tight deadlines
  7. Self-motivated and independent - able to work flexibly with minimal supervision

Desirable key skills: 

  1. First-hand field experience with GCN – surveying, mitigation methods etc
  2. Knowledge and experience of the planning system
  3. Full driving licence and access to a car for business travel
  4. Coding / programming experience (especially R)

Employment benefits and location: 

NatureSpace Partnership is a small (25 staff) but busy and rapidly growing company. The successful candidates will be joining a friendly, close-working team of home-workers and will have responsibility for managing their workload and working independently, as part of a dispersed national team. The post requires high levels of motivation and high standards of self-management. Location is entirely flexible - this post will be mainly desk-based but some site visits and travelling to meetings may be required.

We offer a significant benefits package for all staff including: flexible working with TOIL or overtime, 25 days annual leave (plus free holiday over the Christmas period) with flexibility to carry forward, an annual performance bonus of up to 20% salary, company pension contributions, company private health and life insurance, and an electric vehicle salary sacrifice scheme.