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More about Technical Services

A quick guide to what we do, how we are structured, our Employer Champion status and how to join us.

More about us

Technical Services encompasses a team of predominantly technical staff who are based around specialist areas such as laboratories, classrooms, workshops, controlled environments (e.g. glasshouses), theatres and studios. The activities that take place in these areas are associated with teaching, research and outreach support.

Many of our technical staff hold PhDs and degrees often in a field associated with the Schools in which they work, a number are Fellows and Associate Fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA), and we are currently developing our professional accreditation status as Registered Science Technicians (RSciTech), Registered Scientists (RSci) and Chartered Scientists (CSci).

In addition we have a small team of Health and Safety Co-ordinators (HSCs) who provide advice and guidance on the Health and Safety aspects associated with the 'higher risk' Schools. The role of the Health and Safety Co-ordinators is to provide high quality, proactive and comprehensive support and advice to Heads of Schools on all aspects of health and safety associated with staff, students and facilities. A number of our HSCs have degrees and PhDs and all are NEBOSH qualified.

Technician Commitment

The University of Reading was a founding signatory of the Technician Commitment in May 2017. This scheme was launched by the Science Council and the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and it has been developed to address the key issues affecting the technical community.

  1. Visibility
  2. Recognition
  3. Career Development
  4. Sustainability
  5. Evaluating Impact

Further information can be found in the Technician Commitment Booklet.

Read our Technician Commitment 36 months Action Plan 2021.

Employer Champion

In 2017 the University of Reading became a Science Council Employer Champion. An impressive number of technical staff in Technical Services at the University of Reading have become professionally registered as Registered Science Technicians, Registered Scientists and Chartered Scientists. In acknowledgement of these efforts, the Vice-Chancellor, Sir David Bell was presented with an Employer Champion plaque by Belinda Phipps, Chief Executive Officer of the Science Council at a celebratory event. Employer Champion status recognises a shared commitment to investing in the development of staff and supporting them to become professionally registered. It recognises the importance of raising the visibility of technical staff and of safeguarding and investing in their skills and expertise to ensure sustainability of our technical workforce.

The University of Reading joins seven other universities in achieving Employer Champion status (Manchester, King's College, Nottingham, Newcastle, Sheffield, Strathclyde and the Open University).

 

Secondment to the Disability Office

One of our Technical Managers, Kevin Flint, has completed a three-month secondment to the University's Disability Office to work on a project looking at how we can better support and facilitate staff and students with disabilities.

Shared Parental Leave

SPL enables eligible parents to choose how to share the care of their child during the first year of birth or adoption. Its purpose is to give parents more flexibility in considering how to best care for and bond with their child.

My Time on Shared Parental Leave, by Mr Wayne Knight

"I am a senior technician in Technical Services supporting the School of Biological Sciences. I started my shared parental leave in March 2018 and was excited for some time at home and with high hopes of finding lots of activities to do. However I quickly discovered when it started that I did not know quite what to do with myself and what to do with my new daughter, Holly. For the first week I stayed at home, doing some small walks, feeling on edge and waiting for my wife to come home just to help and have someone to talk to, as a 6 month old baby does not have much to say! I spoke to a friend at work and she gives me a 5 step plan to make sure I got out and about. Soon I was going to baby sensory club and baby soft-play which give me the opportunity to talk to people who are in the same situation as myself. Despite the adjustment period, I soon settled into my new role. I did notice there were very few dads taking up shared parental leave, which seemed strange to me as it is an opportunity for fathers to spend valuable quality time with their children. I would highly recommend more dads to take advantage of SPL because the time I had off with Holly was so special to me and I will remember it for the rest of my life.

All I can say is don't knock it until you try it."

How we are structured

Specialist technicians delivering teaching and research support are physically located within Schools with management provided on a cluster of Schools basis. Four clusters are in place: Cluster 1 which includes SBS, SCFP and SPCLS, Cluster 2 which includes SAGES, SAPD (not technical staff based at CEDAR) and SMPCS, Cluster 3 which includes IoE, SBE and SACD and the Operations Cluster. Each Cluster is subdivided into Divisions as shown.

Technical Services encompasses a team of predominantly technical staff who are based around specialist areas such as laboratories, classrooms, workshops, controlled environments (e.g. glasshouses), theatres and studios. The activities that take place in these areas are associated with teaching, research and outreach support. Specialist technicians delivering teaching and research support are physically located within Schools with management provided on a cluster of Schools basis. Three such clusters are organised under Cluster 1 which includes SBS, SCFP and SPCLS, Cluster 2 which includes SAGES, SAPD (not technical staff based at CEDAR) and SPCLS and Cluster 3 which includes IoE, SBE and SACD. Our teaching, research and outreach support activities are underpinned by a fourth Cluster, the Operations Cluster.

Many of our technical staff hold PhDs and degrees often in a field associated with the Schools in which they work, a number are Fellows and Associate Fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA), and we are currently developing our professional accreditation status as Registered Science Technicians (RSciTech), Registered Arts Technicians (RATech), Registered Scientists (RSci) and Registered Engineers (EngTech) and Chartered Scientists (CSci).

In addition we have a small team of Health and Safety Co-ordinators (HSCs) who provide advice and guidance on the Health and Safety aspects associated with the 'higher risk' Schools:

  1. SBS
  2. SCFP
  3. SAGES/SMPCS
  4. SAPD (excluding farms)/SPCLS
  5. IoE
  6. SACD
  7. SBE

Their role is to provide high quality, proactive and comprehensive support and advice to Heads of Schools on all aspects of health and safety associated with staff, students and facilities and to work with staff and students to engender a positive culture towards policies, practices and procedures relating to Health and Safety. All of our HSCs are NEBOSH trained.

 

How to join us

Vacancies, when available, are advertised on the Jobs at the University page.