Written by Elizabeth Wilkinson, Postgraduate Careers Consultant at The Careers Service
If you are a science researcher, masters or undergrad, it’s not always easy to find the jobs to apply to amongst all the engineering, IT and finance/business roles on offer.
However, by using your research skills, you can uncover lots of scientific jobs and employers – here’s how.
1. Look for science jobs which are being advertised:
- The pros – you know there is a job to be filled.
- The cons – so do lots of other people, so the competition will be high.
2. Look for scientific employers and see if they have any jobs:
- The pros – they may have jobs to be filled, but if a job isn’t available now, they may keep you on file; this means that when a vacancy does occur, they may contact you before even considering advertising, so there is less competition.
- The cons – may not be recruiting when you need a job.
Expand your tactics for finding science jobs
Here are some resources to get you started searching for scientific jobs.
Scientific recruitment agencies
- SRG – www.srgtalent.com
- CK Science – http://ckscience.co.uk
- Network Scientific – www.networkscientificrecruitment.com
- Vector Recruitment – www.vrl.co.uk
- Find more agencies (& employers) currently recruiting – www.reed.co.uk/recruiterdirectory
Online profile – make it work harder for you
- Join professional networks eg LinkedIn (www.linkedin.com), update your profile (include scientific skills/technologies so they appear in searches), join specialist groups for jobs in your field (nano/micro lithography, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, linguistic anthropology – they’re all there), follow employers represented in those groups & others you know – become findable!
- Specialist job ads are becoming more common on LinkedIn – search for jobs in your field and set up job alerts.
Online search for job adverts – use specialist sites
General science jobs websites such as
- New Scientist – http://jobs.newscientist.com
- Nature – www.nature.com/naturejobs
- Science – http://jobs.sciencecareers.org
- Research Gate – www.researchgate.net/jobs (mainly science jobs)
Graduate (and postgraduate) job sites – can filter for science jobs
- Employers targeting University of Manchester – www.manchester.ac.uk/careerslink – login required
- UoM Careers Service “Which career?” – includes job sites for over 20 sectors including science, environment etc – www.careers.manchester.ac.uk/whichcareer Example sites include:
- Gradcracker – www.gradcracker.com/search/sciences-maths/graduate-jobs
Find scientific employers and engage with them
University of Manchester Careers Service
- Employer database – www.manchester.ac.uk/careerslink – see Organisation Search.
- Which Career? – Scientific Work, include sources of scientific employers – www.careers.manchester.ac.uk/whichcareer/science
Look in science and innovation parks – search members
- UK Science Park Association – www.ukspa.org.uk/our-members
- International Association of Science Parks – www.iasp.ws/Our-members/Directory
Explore research institutes, centres and companies interested in researchers
- www.jobs.ac.uk/employers – browse employers by type (not just universities!)
- UK Research Councils – https://careersportal.co.uk/UKRI-careers – government funded research centres and institutes.
- AIRTO is a membership organisation for a number of commercial and government funded research organisations and institutes – www.airto.co.uk/about/members
Find networks of scientists & get involved
- Professional bodies (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_professional_associations_in_the_United_Kingdom) – get involved with a relevant scientific professional body to meet scientists in your field.
- Trade associations – www.taforum.org/trade-associations often have lists of members.
- For example – Pharma/bioscience: ABPI (national – http://careers.abpi.org.uk), BioNow (North West/North East – www.bionow.co.uk plus a member directory – www.bionowb2b.co.uk), One Nucleus (Cambridge/London – www.onenucleus.com), OBN (Oxford/South – www.obn.org.uk)
Let others know you’re looking – they might lead to a useful contact
- Tell everyone you know what you’re looking for, social and online contacts included. You never know who a friend or distant cousin might know…
- Attend recruitment events, talk to employers, link with them on LinkedIn
- Update your social media and professional online profiles (eg. LinkedIn)
Send speculative CVs to specialist employers, especially smaller scientific employers. Include a link to your online professional profile – this allows you to keep your details up to date and offers the chance for them to connect online with you, for future reference.
For other general hints and tips about finding a job in today’s job market, see our recent talks:
- Just finished your taught postgraduate programme – next steps
- How to navigate the job market for doctoral researchers
- Finding hidden graduate jobs
Careers Consultant (Postgraduate) at the University of Manchester, UK