Organisation STFC
Organisation Detail Science and Technology Facilities Council
Reference Number IRC245236
Location Warrington See on Map
Salary £30357 - £32997
Date Posted 10 May 2018
Grade RC-D
Contract Type Open Ended
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 27 May 2018
Interview Date

Brief Description

Salary: £30,357 - £32,997 + £1000 annual responsibility allowance                
Grade: D
Contract Type: Open-Ended
Hours: Full time
Closing Date: 27th May 2018


About us:

The Hartree Centre:

We want to see UK businesses outperforming their global competitors. We want to grow the economy, create skilled jobs and train people to excel in them. Most of all, we want to keep the UK at the forefront of industrial innovation.

At the Hartree Centre, we're making all this happen and more, by enabling UK industry to fully embrace and integrate the latest digital and cognitive technologies.

We provide collaborative research, innovation and development services that accelerate the application of high performance computing (HPC), big data analytics and cognitive computing technologies. By working with us, businesses and research partners can gain a competitive advantage that enables them to produce better outcomes, products and services, more quickly and cheaply than through conventional R&D.

We have one of the most exciting computing environments in the UK, encompassing a wide range of technologies, including Cavium ARM 64-bit processors, FPGAs, GPUs, Intel Xeon and Intel Xeon Phi processors, low-latency high-bandwidth networking, water-cooled systems, high-performance storage systems and even an immersive oil-cooled system. Software includes cluster configuration and provisioning tools, compilers, software performance tools, parallel file systems, a wealth of data analytics software and energy monitoring tools.

The Hartree Centre is looking to recruit a talented Systems Administrator to the Platforms and Infrastructure Group to assist in managing this complex suite of hardware and software. We operate a service desk according to ITIL best practice and the role will include providing second-line support to the service desk. 

List of Duties/Responsibilities:

  • deliver a great service to our customers by understanding their workflows and desired outcomes
  • work closely with customers and users to undertake supervised and unsupervised project work, ensuring deliverables are met on time, to specification and within budget
  • perform routine system administration tasks such as monitoring, tuning, hardware fault detection and resolution
  • deliver professional, customer-focused, second and third line support to our customers. Ensure incident tickets are resolved or escalated within SLA targets
  • identify and implement configuration changes as required, under formal change management
  • identify areas for process or operational improvements such as automation; project-manage implementation of such improvements as required
  • create and maintain accurate and complete documentation of procedures and configurations
  • maintain shift log records of activity
  • maintain and develop user documentation, using your experience and understanding of user needs.

Contacts and Communication:

You will need to have excellent communications skills to ensure that they can communicate effectively with all stakeholders, especially our customers, users and staff. You will report to the Group Leader, Platforms and Infrastructure Group.

Personal Skills and Attributes:

You must demonstrate excellent analytical and problem-solving capability, excellent written and verbal communications skills and the ability to show sound judgment. You must also be able to act on your own initiative to ensure the provision of an excellent service to Hartree Centre customers.

Other relevant information:

Skills and personal development opportunities will be made available, tailored to your specific needs and the needs of the Hartree Centre.

You will be expected to provide out-of-hours on-call cover, on a shared rota basis.

You will be expected to undergo National Security Vetting to SC level before being confirmed in this role. One of the requirements for this is that you have been living in the UK for at least five years.

There is a requirement for occasional travel to work related meetings within the UK. International travel may be required in exceptional circumstances.

Organization Description

UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. More information can be found at

The Science and Technology Facilities Council is a world-leading multi-disciplinary science organisation, and our goal is to deliver economic, societal, scientific and international benefits to the UK and its people – and more broadly to the world.

Shortlisting Criteria:


  • extensive experience in administration of UNIX or Linux platforms or a degree (or equivalent) in a relevant scientific or technical subject
  • experience of providing L2/L3 support
  • evidence of working with internal or external customers to define requirements specifications
  • experience of leading significant work packages or projects
  • evidence of routine operational responsibilities for large-scale compute systems and/or data analytics platforms and/or containers
  • evidence of routine usage of at least 5 of thesec ore technical skills:
    • UNIX/Linux
    • bash
    • python
    • perl
    • gcc
    • VMWare vSphere
    • Hortonworks
    • Spark
    • Spectrum LSF
    • Slurm
    • Spectrum Scale (GPFS)
    • Kubernetes
    • Docker
    • Singularity.


  • ITIL Foundation or Practitioner accreditation
  • PRINCE2 Practitioner accreditation
  • Red Hat Certified Engineer or similar accreditation.

Interview Criteria:


  • genuine interest in the latest technologies
  • strong ability to understand the perspective and needs of our customers
  • excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • strong interpersonal skills
  • good organisational, time management and problem-solving skills, including the ability to prioritise effectively
  • ability to work independently and within a team
  • project management skills
  • flexibility, responsibility and initiative
  • willingness to travel occasionally within the UK. International travel may be required in exceptional circumstances
  • willingness to undergo security vetting to “SC” level.


  • expertise in managing and provisioning an HPC environment. For example: xCAT, Cobbler, Red Hat Satellite, Puppet, Salt, Ansible
  • experience of using monitoring tools and automating system checks. For example: Icinga, Nagios, Zabbix
  • expertise in configuring and managing workload managers. For example: Spectrum LSF, Slurm, Yarn, Symphony
  • expertise in parallel application support, particularly code compilation, job submission and optimisation. For example: gcc, OpenMPI, Intel compiler suite, Intel MPI
  • experience of parallel file systems. For example: Spectrum Scale (GPFS), BeeGFS, Lustre.

In addition to the competitive salary, an excellent index linked pension scheme and generous leave allowance are offered. Full details of offered benefits can be found on STFC’s careers pages (

To enable us to hire the very best people we will conduct a full and comprehensive background and pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process.

As this job does not fulfil the Home Office Code of Practice criterion for obtaining sponsored migrant worker status we will be unable to apply for sponsorship for anyone not eligible to work in the UK.   At interview, all shortlisted candidates are required to bring with them identification documents and original documents that prove they hold or can obtain the right to work in the UK. You can check your eligibility here:

Online applications only, please submit a covering letter and CV, ensuring that the IRC reference is included in the file name description of each document uploaded. No Agencies.

The closing date for applications is 27th May 2018.

We want to make our application process as easy for you as we possibly can. If you experience any problems in applying for this job, or have any feedback for us about the application process, please contact our Recruitment Hotline on 01793 867000 (8.30am – 5.00pm Monday to Friday). Please quote the appropriate IRC reference number when calling.

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