Returning to STEM as a Technical Assistant
About the job
The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) are delighted to introduce our second 7-month Returning to STEM programme. We welcome scientists and engineers from all backgrounds and work experiences who are struggling to return to the industry following a career break. We know life offers lots of challenges that can impact work and at the IPO, we don’t believe it should prevent you from reaching your full potential. We want to provide you with an opportunity to return to STEM by offering training, mentoring, coaching
and opportunities to build your confidence. In return, you’ll be involved in the exciting world of Patents and Innovation.
We understand the need for a good work/life balance and offer both flexitime and part time hours along with homeworking.
If you have a gap in your STEM career then you qualify for this exciting opportunity!
Why not see for yourself and check out one of our previous Returners blog: STEM returner experience: a success story! - VERCIDA
This role will be carried out remotely due to current Government restrictions.
Some attendance at our office in Newport may be necessary when the current situation finishes. The frequency will be determined when we have completed a review of our working arrangements.
We support hybrid and flexible working and would encourage candidates to discuss this with us during the recruitment process.
Our people make the IPO. We recognise a breadth of skills and experience and value the unique contribution every person brings to the organisation.
The Technical assistant role will be to work with a small team of patent examiners to help them scrutinise both the technical and legal aspects of patent applications to determine if the inventions set out in those
applications are new and inventive and whether the applications satisfy other legal requirements.
General Strengths/Skills required for the technical assistant
1. Enthusiasm for understanding how things work.
2. Ability to communicate technical information both orally and in writing.
3. Self-starter who has the ability to manage their own work.
4. STEM expertise via a relevant STEM qualification or industry experience.
Please refer to job description
We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:
- Communicating and Influencing
- Making Effective Decisions
We understand the need for a good work/life balance and offer both flexitime and homeworking along with other family friendly policies that support modern working families and individuals with caring responsibilities
We offer a wealth of learning and development opportunities to enhance your skills, including access to technical and non-technical training.
Ensuring that we make a positive impact on society while delivering our services is important to us. To help us achieve this all our staff can take volunteer days as part of our corporate social responsibility.
Benefits of working with the wider IPO:
• The opportunity to form part of our many inclusive network groups, find out more on Inclusive Features at the IPO
• A variety of support functions including our excellent Staff Counselling Service which is a source of support for all staff at the IPO;
• A flexible working scheme which has no core hours and excellent opportunities for home, part-time and term-time working;
• A very generous pension scheme, with low employee contributions, further information around the benefits of joining the Civil Service can be found here
• Eligibility for special and office-wide bonus payments;
• Excellent development opportunities;
• Opportunities for secondments, both internal and external;
• Opportunities to join many civil-service clubs such as the Sports and Social Association, Motoring Club (CSMA), which provide numerous discounts to members
When working at Concept House, Newport the following benefits are also available:
• A limited number of free car parking spaces are available on site;
• On-site facilities including gymnasium, shop, restaurant
Please note benefits may be subject to change.
Things you need to know
- Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
- People working with government assets must complete basic personnel security standard checks.
Selection process details
This vacancy is using Success Profiles, and will assess your Behaviours and Experience.
How to apply
If not already done so applicants will need to create a Civil Service Jobs account before applying online, they will then need to complete and submit the application form.
All communications will be electronic therefore it is vitally important that you check your Civil Service Jobs account regularly, as well as your spam/junk email folder
An initial sift of applications will be carried out to create a shortlist, this will be based on the evidence
provided for the following Success Profile elements:
The panel will be assessing applicants against a CV and Personal statement.
When completing your CV please ensure you list your background in STEM covering your job history and any relevant qualifications. Please ensure you include your career break.
When completing your 250 word Personal Statement, please provide an answer to the following:
'Why do you want to get back into STEM and what do you want to achieve from this opportunity?'
If invited to interview Behaviour and Experience based questioning will be used.
Communicating and Influencing
Making Effective Decisions
Please note: Specific information regarding the interview assessment structure and Success Profile elements that will be assessed at interview will be contained within the interview invitation.
IMPORTANT: CV’s sent direct to the IPO will not be accepted.
If you require job-specific information, please contact
Name: Alison Stransom
Telephone: 01633 81 4452
This post is being advertised to Internal, across Government and external candidates at the same time.
Incomplete and/or late submissions will not be accepted or considered.
Should you have any queries or require any assistance in this matter, please contact the IPO Recruitment team at Recruitment@ipo.gov.uk prior to the closing of the post.
In line with Government guidance, successfully appointed candidates will need to provide documents for our Right to Work checks. Information on this will be sent within the invite to interview text.
Candidates to Note
Any move to the Intellectual Property Office from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax-Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility at
From 8 June 2020, The Intellectual Property Office is to provide a Fair Processing Notice to all new applicants after they have been successful at interview.
As one aspect of pre-employment screening, personal details (name, National Insurance Number and date of birth) will be checked against the Civil Service Resourcing Extract Internal Fraud database. Anyone included on the Internal Fraud Database will be refused employment unless they can demonstrate exceptional circumstances.
The Intellectual Property Office will, on behalf of the vacancy holder, inform applicants when they are refused employment because of their inclusion in the Internal Fraud database.
A candidate is not eligible to apply for a role within the Civil Service if the application is made within a 5 year period following a dismissal for carrying out internal fraud against government.
Terms & Conditions:
Please note that IPO has updated its terms and conditions of employment as part of Civil Service Reform.
It is the candidate’s responsibility to ensure they are aware of the Terms and Conditions they will adopt should they be successful on application.
Please see the attached Terms and Conditions document.
Voluntary Moves: If your pay (excluding allowances) is above the IPO maximum for the grade it will be capped at the IPO maximum for the grade when you transfer.
OGD loan or permanent transfers: Please note that due to the childcare changes introduced by HMRC in October 2018, employees going on loan/transferring to another government department that were in
receipt of childcare vouchers in their previous department will not be able to continue receiving these post transfer.
For more information on the childcare schemes offered by IPO, please contact HRandPayrollTeam@ipo.gov.uk
If moving internally on lateral transfer you will remain on your current base salary. Please note: All allowances are specific of individual roles and may not be transferable.
Further information Civil Service pension schemes can be found here:
The IPO is an inclusive employer where diversity is respected and differences valued. Our positive approach to diversity allows us to select the most suitable applicants free from bias on factors such as age, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity or religion.
If you require an adjustment at any stage of the recruitment process, then please let the recruitment team know via ; Recruitment@ipo.gov.uk
Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.
This job is broadly open to the following groups:
- UK nationals
- nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
- nationals of the Republic of Ireland
- nationals from the EU, EEA or Switzerland with settled or pre-settled status or who apply Further information on nationality requirementsfor either
- status by the deadline of the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
- relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals working in the Civil Service
- relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals who have built up the right to work in the Civil Service
- certain family members of the relevant EU, EEA, Swiss or Turkish nationals
Working for the Civil Service
The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants. We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles.
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.
Apply and further information
Once this job has closed, the job advert will no longer be available. You may want to save a copy for your
Contact point for applicants
Job contact :
Name : IPO Recruitment Team
Email : Recruitment@ipo.gov.uk
Recruitment team :
Email : Recruitment@ipo.gov.uk
Commissioners statement The Civil Service recruits by merit on the basis of fair and open competition as outlined in the Civil Service Commission’s Recruitment Principles. Complaints Procedure: If you feel your
application has not been treated in accordance with the Recruitment Principles and you wish to make a complaint, please contact; Paula Brooks, Intellectual Property Office, Concept House, Cardiff Road, Newport, NP10 8QQ. If you are not satisfied with the response you receive from the Department, you can contact the Civil Service Commission at: http://civilservicecommission.independent.gov.uk/civil-servicerecruitment/complaints/