Grant Funding Manager (Science Administration)

Job details
Posting date: 18 May 2021
Salary: £39,974 per year
Additional salary information: Band E; from £39,974 with higher remuneration considered depending on experience and qualifications
Hours: Full time
Closing date: 17 June 2021
Location: Pirbright, Surrey, GU24 0NF
Company: The Pirbright Institute
Job type: Permanent
Job reference: 21P-61

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The Pirbright Institute

The Pirbright Institute delivers world-leading research to understand, predict, detect and respond to viral disease outbreaks. We study viruses of livestock that are endemic and exotic to the UK, including zoonotic viruses, by using the most advanced tools and technologies to understand host-pathogen interactions in animals and arthropod vectors. Our major strength in understanding the immune systems of livestock provides a platform to control current diseases and respond to emerging threats.

Organisation position and purpose

The Grant Funding Manager plays a critical role in developing and managing the Institute’s funded research portfolio, working to maximize the Institute’s success rates and grant income. The Grant Funding Manger will proactively facilitate, support and contribute to the submission and management of awarded funding applications.

The post holder will be the Institute’s expert on national and international funding schemes, undertaking horizon scanning activities, targeting appropriate opportunities, working with scientific staff to develop proposals and assisting with the development of major bids.

They will manage internal review and grants management processes and will work closely with colleagues across the Operational Directorates, in particular Finance, as well as the Science Directorate. The role focuses on pre-award management, however, there is a growing element of post-award management also involved.

The post holder will report to the Head of Science Administration, deputizing for the Head of Department as required, will manage the Grants Officer, and will be part of a proactive, enthusiastic and professional team that is well established at the Institute.

Main duties and responsibility

Horizon Scanning

  • Research and keep abreast of key national and international policy developments that may influence and create future funding opportunities.
  • Work with the Grants Officer to ensure that these funding opportunities are communicated to relevant research staff.

Intelligence and Influencing

  • Develop relationships with national and international funding agencies.
  • Analyse strategic priorities and calls, mapping these to Institute research remit and strategic priorities, to ensure competitive applications and success rates for funding.
  • Track and disseminate information on donor agency priorities that are of relevance to the Institute’s research programmes.
  • Understand the policy documents and processes which underlie funding opportunities to ensure Institute applications reflect their expectations and intentions.
  • Provide reports and advice to Senior Staff (Executive Board, Science Committee) as required.

Co-ordination, management and administration of applications and awards

  • Advise and support researchers on the preparation of funding bids, across all funders to ensure high quality submissions and to maximise competitive income.
  • Work with the Finance team to provide advice on the costing of proposals in line with funder and Institute requirements.
  • Ensure applications are accurately and fully completed before submission.
  • Keep up to date with evolving research assessment criteria.
  • Manage the administrative aspects for international awards particularly leading on interactions with funders, project officers and consortium co-ordinators.
  • Manage internal grant review processes and be a permanent member of the Institute’s application review panel.
  • Draft and maintain documentation relating to departmental processes.
  • Manage and co-ordinate internal processes for project changes and post-award matters, for example project extensions, liaising with Science, Finance and HR.
  • Manage the Grants Officer.
  • Work with the Head of Science Administration and the Grants Officer on all aspects of application and award administration, including reporting.

This job description is only an outline of the tasks, responsibilities and outcomes required of the role. The jobholder will carry out any other duties as may be reasonably required by his/her line manager. The job description and personal specification may be reviewed on an ongoing basis in accordance with the changing needs of The Pirbright Institute.

All employees shall actively participate in the Institute-wide quality assurance system in conjunction with the Institute’s Quality Manager. Employees are also expected to safeguard their own health and safety and security by following policies and all employees are responsible for the Health and Safety and security of staff under their management.

Personal specification

For this role we are looking for someone who has experience with a range of funding organisations, ideally including international funders, and a track record of working with researchers to develop successful grant applications.

In order to be successful in this role you will need excellent attention to detail, to be highly proactive, and organised and have excellent time management skills.

The post holder will have a high degree of autonomy, therefore the successful candidate will need excellent communication (verbal and written), and decision making/problem solving skills, with an ability to prioritize a diverse workload with competing demands.

The role is a fast paced, and dynamic, a flexible approach and the strength of character to deal with a wide variety of tasks, at times under pressure, is essential to succeed.

Specific requirements


  • A science degree or equivalent in a relevant branch of biosciences
  • Substantial, relevant proven experience working with donor governments and/or funding agencies
  • Detailed knowledge and understanding of funding processes and policies, and implications for Institute funding
  • Proven track record in developing and successfully implementing funding proposals and funding strategies to secure resources
  • Evidence of excellent oral and written communication skills, including the ability to communicate effectively with funding bodies, peer-review groups, government agencies, and staff at all levels
  • Experience of grants management databases
  • Excellent organisation and time management skills with ability to manage competing priorities


  • A PhD or equivalent in a relevant branch of biosciences
  • Existing contacts with national and international funding agencies
  • Previous experience of working in a research environment
  • Demonstrable experience of providing training and policy guidance to others
  • Knowledge or experience of grant administration and management, including international collaborations
  • Demonstrable experience of building relationships with senior staff internally and externally
  • Capable of strategic thinking

What we offer

  • Generous Group Personal Pension Scheme and life cover (subject to age and earnings)
  • 25 days annual leave per annum, pro rata, plus 10.5 public and privilege days
  • Buy and sell annual leave
  • Option to carry over up to two weeks annual leave
  • Pirbright gym with subsidised membership
  • Pirbright social club
  • Pirbright Lifestyle Hub (employee discount site)
  • Cycle to work
  • Subsidised staff restaurant
  • Childcare allowance
  • Free onsite parking
  • Electric Car charging facilities

To apply for this vacancy please visit our careers page -Jobs | The Pirbright Institute

Due to the high volume of applications we receive, if you have not heard from us within one month from closing date of the vacancy, then please contact us on for an update.

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