Scientist – Surface Observation R&D

Scientist – Surface Observation R&D

Job Description

  • Permanent
  • Exeter EX1 3PB, UK
  • £32100 - £34925 per annum + reward package up to £44696 UK / Year

We’re looking for an exceptional Scientist – Surface Observation R&D to help us make a difference to our planet.

As our Scientist – Surface Observation R&D you will work a hybrid pattern and will be on site at the Exeter HQ on average one day per week, although in your first few months of the role this may be up to 3 days per week. You can choose to work more frequently in our state-of-the-art office if you’d prefer. You may also be required to travel to other parts of UK for field trials, necessitating up to a few days away from home..

Our opportunity is full time, 37 hours per week, but we would also consider applicants wishing to work a minimum of 3 days per week/22 hours per week and we will also try our best to consider those intending to work a job share. Our people are at the heart of what we do and we’ll do our best to agree a working pattern that works for everyone.

Why join us?

The Met Office is accredited as a ‘Great Place to Work UK 2023’ and in addition has achieved a place on both the UK’s ‘Best Workplaces in Tech’ and ‘Best Workplaces for Women’ lists.

We invest in our people to unlock their full potential. As our Scientist – Surface Observation R&D , we will support you to develop and thrive to be the best you can be. We champion positive physical and mental health in the workplace and are committed to being an inclusive organisation, providing a working culture that actively values an equal and diverse workforce.

As our Scientist – Surface Observation R&D , your starting salary will be £32100.00. New joiners to the Met Office will start on the salary band minimum. Our 2022-25 pay award means the salary will increase to £33794.00 from 1st April 2024, and you will be able to progress towards £36235.00 over time.

Your total reward package is potentially worth up to £44696.00 annually, which includes basic salary, potential corporate bonus and employer pension contributions.

Your package includes:
– Outstanding Civil Service Pension with an average employer contribution of 27%
– Flexible hours and homeworking
– Annual Leave starting at 27.5 days (plus Bank Holidays) rising to 32.5 days (plus Bank Holidays) after 5 years and option to buy or sell up to 5 days per year of annual leave
– Cycle to work scheme for the purchase of a bicycle and equipment to support healthy, low carbon travel
– Access to discounted shopping, inclusive of retail, leisure and lifestyle brands

Who we are

We provide critical weather services and world-leading climate science to deliver extraordinary impact and benefit across the globe. Our work helps people make better decisions to stay safe and thrive.


  • We’re a force for good – focusing on our environmental and social impact
  • We’re experts by nature – always learning and developing to do things better
  • We live and breathe it – putting our purpose at the heart of decision-making
  • We’re better together – understanding partnerships and inclusivity make us greater
  • We keep evolving – pushing boundaries to make tomorrow better for our customers

Find out more about our values visit our Career Page.

Job Purpose

As our Scientist – Surface Observation R&D , your key responsibilities are:

  • Designing and running measurement campaigns, possibly in different locations around the UK
  • Working with research engineers to make your experiment design a reality
  • Analyzing the data from your experiments, and those of others, using code that you will have written to a demanding quality standard
  • Making clear recommendations based on the results

Essential Qualifications, Skills & Abilities


  • You will have experience equivalent to degree level in a physical science, engineering or mathematical discipline and several years applying this knowledge to a range of challenges. (Experts by nature)
  • While the hardware side of experimentation is not a pre-requisite, you can demonstrate that you understand the success criteria for a well-designed experiment. You are able to implement these by designing and executing an experiment that yields data capable of answering your research question and communicate these results in a compelling way.
  • You code proficiently in at least one high-level programming language, with a desire to enhance skills and/or learn new languages as needed. (R and Python are extensively used in the Met Office, but training will be provided as necessary.) You will have undertaken scientific analysis of experimental data you have captured using your high-level language.
  • You are able to design and employ quality control techniques to ensure that your results are robust. This includes familiarity with best practice techniques as well as, for example, applying your expertise to assess that your code works as expected or that instrument measurements are reasonable.
  • You can work effectively both independently and as part of a small team of people, especially those with complementary skill sets. You are able to communicate your ideas (and listen to others) effectively and are comfortable taking the lead when the task demands it. (Better together)


How to apply

If you share our values, we’d love to hear from you. Apply below using your CV and a Cover Letter/Supporting Statement which evidences how you meet each of the essential criteria – we recommend candidates use the CARL (Context, Action, Result and Learning) method for presenting evidence of skills.

Closing date 21/02/2024 at 23:59 with interviews commencing from 11/03/2024. You will hear from us once the closing date has passed.

If successful, please note we are unable to offer expenses for travel to your normal place of work. This post is contractually aligned to Exeter HQ, please ask at interview if you would like extra clarity on how often this requirement is likely to be.

How we can help:

If you are considering applying and need support to do so, please contact us via . You can request adjustments either within your application or by contacting us. Should you be offered an interview, please be aware there may be a selection exercise which could include a presentation, written test or a scenario-based activity. You can select in your application to be considered under the Disability Confident Scheme. To be invited to interview/assessment under this scheme, your application must meet the essential criteria for the role.

We understand that great minds don’t always think alike and as an equal opportunities employer we welcome applications from those with all protected characteristics. We recruit on merit, fairness, and open competition in line with the Civil Service Code.

We can only accept applications from those eligible to live and work in the UK – please refer to GOV.UK for information. We require Security clearance, for which you need to have resided in the UK for at least 3 of the last 5 years to be eligible. You will need to achieve full security clearance within your first 6 months with us.

Additional information

If INT & Science Profession: In line with the Science Progressions framework, if you are a current Met Office employee within the Science or Scientific Consultancy career families (within the Science Profession) in a fluid-grade role, please ensure that you submit your application at the same Pay Group level as your current job.


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