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Head of Health and Safety

The Pirbright Institute

Location: Woking
Salary: Band F; from £48,772
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Permanent
Placed On: 27th August 2021
Closes: 24th September 2021
Job Ref: 21P-106

Salary: Band F; from £48,772 with higher remuneration considered depending on experience and qualifications

The Pirbright Institute

The Pirbright Institute delivers world-leading research to understand, predict, detect and respond to viral disease outbreaks.

Organisation position and purpose:

The Head of Health Safety & Environment provides Pirbright with the leadership and professional expertise necessary to; develop and maintain management of risks, establish assurance for stakeholders, ensure compliance with Health Safety & Environment requirements, facilitating science productivity and innovation.

Main duties and responsibility

  • Support implementation of a Health Safety & Environment management system in alignment with ISO 45001, ISO 35001, ISO 14001 and HSE HSG65.
  • Provide high reliability expert advice on Health Safety & Environment.
  • Drive strategic and operational change and deliver sustained continuous improvement in Health Safety & Environment.
  • Support development of emergency preparedness, including drills and exercises to test and improve emergency plans, and assisting the management of incidents.
  • Investigate incidents.
  • Participate in the internal audit programme, planning, carrying out and writing up audits (and occasionally arranging use of external consultants).
  • Support the on-going collection, collation, analysis and presentation of Safety Performance Indicators and Key Performance Indicators, and benchmarking national and sector metrics.
  • In liaison with HR, monitor and facilitate development of occupational health provision.
  • Participate in the internal Health Safety & Environment training & competency programme.
  • Contribute Health Safety & Environment expertise to defining requirements and providing advice in the planning and development of new facilities.
  • Working with the Head of Biorisk.
  • External engagement with national and international sector bodies and relevant groups.
  • Line manage advisers within the Risk & Assurance Directorate, setting objectives.
  • Apply and exemplify the principles of Major Hazard Leadership.

Personal specification

  • Drives and delivers change and improvement
  • Displays leadership and fosters team development and effectiveness
  • Good time management and reliability under pressure
  • Sound decision-making and problem-solving skills
  • Influential, collaborative, tactful
  • Results-driven, produces work to exacting standards

Specific requirements


  • Degree or equivalent in a STEM subject, and/or substantial research or technical laboratory experience.
  • NEBOSH Diploma in Occupational Health & Safety or equivalent.
  • Chartered Member of the Institution of Occupational Health & Safety or equivalent.
  • Substantial experience of provision of Health & Safety guidance and support, and of development and implementation of management systems, policies and processes, in a science-based or research-based or similar organisation.
  • Proven track record of driving strategic and operational change and improvement, and of ensuring staff and stakeholder ownership and implementation of the change.
  • Ability to build relationships and to resolve challenge and conflict.
  • Ability to produce work to exacting standards with rigorous attention to detail.


  • IEMA Certificate in Environmental Management or equivalent.
  • Experience in environmental management or hazardous waste management.
  • Qualification in ISO management system auditing.
  • Experience in ISO management system auditing.
  • ISTR Biosafety Practitioner I or equivalent.
  • Experience in biorisk management.
  • Qualification in training or education.
  • Experience in development and delivery of training courses.

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
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