Skip to main content

Programme Director: National Science Capability in Animal Health (NSCAH) Programme

Posted: 31 Oct 2019 Closes: 1 Dec 2019
Weybridge, Surrey £125,000
Permanent & Full-time defra/20191031182401

Within the Defra Group, the NSCAH programme is being established to oversee the re-development of the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) high containment science laboratories based at Weybridge. The vision of the NSCAH Programme is to bring all high containment facilities, laboratories and associated functions together into new fit for purpose facilities, and to restore an ordered layout and infrastructure framework to the Weybridge science estate.

Defra group are seeking an experienced Programme Director to come in on the ground floor, to take responsibility for establishing a team and commence the more detailed design, planning and delivery process.

This is a compelling opportunity to lead the construction of a world class science facility, delivering infrastructure that is critical to human and animal health in the UK. This is a highly complex, high value (£1bn), ten year programme of work that will see the re-development of a wide range of specialist and complex scientific facilities, laboratories and other buildings and is one of only 30 such sites across the world.

As the Programme Director for NSCAH you will be accountable for the delivery of one of the largest and most critical programmes in government today. More specifically, you and your team, will be responsible for programme management and resourcing, new build design and construction change management and work to support operational continuity during transition.

We are looking for an experienced Programme Director who is able to demonstrate an impressive track record in the delivery of a portfolio of highly complex, multi-million pound construction projects/programmes; which must include campus, research or science facilities. You will possess substantial experience in working with a diverse range of senior stakeholders and external partners – through which you will demonstrate you have the personal impact and communication skills to effectively challenge assumptions and influence direction in highly complex environments.


It is important that, through your CV and supporting statement, you give evidence and examples of proven experience of each of the selection criteria detailed below.

Essential Experience

• Extensive experience (at Director level) of Project and Programme Management;
successfully leading and delivering a portfolio of multi-million-pound, large scale
construction projects to include campus, research and/or science facilities

• Demonstrable experience of successfully working with a broad range of senior stakeholders and external partners, demonstrating the communication skills, impact and gravitas to effectively challenge assumptions, negotiate and influence direction in complex ambiguous and highly regulated environments

• Proven experience in the leadership of large, multi-disciplinary teams; driving a
diverse and inclusive working culture with employees, contractors and consultants

• Substantial track record of strong financial management, delivering value for money

• Experience in managing significant budgets with associated reporting and



• Learning and development tailored to your role
• An environment with flexible working options
• A culture encouraging inclusion and diversity
• A Civil Service pension

Things you need to know


Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check.

Selection process details

To apply for this post, you will need to complete the online application process accessed via the advertisement listed for this role: This should be completed no later than 23:55 on Sunday the 1st of December 2019.

Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Nationality requirements

Open to UK, Commonwealth and European Economic Area (EEA) and certain non EEA nationals. Further information on whether you are able to apply is available here.

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 equality of opportunity. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.

Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs

Share Job