Grants and Administrative Officer

Key information

  • Location: Barcelona, Spain
  • Staff category: Staff Member - Administrative and support
  • Contract duration: 2 years
  • Grading: 4, 5 or 6; depending on qualification and experience
  • Closing date: 29 June 2020
  • Reference number: BA00054

Continue reading for more information about this position, or apply now.

About this position

We are looking for a Grants and Administrative Officer to join us at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Barcelona, Spain. EMBL Barcelona is the newest site and it has recently been established in the Barcelona Biomedical Research Park (PRBB), one of the largest infrastructures in Southern Europe dedicated to translational research and which is located on the Mediterranean coast of north-eastern Spain. This dual role will have a broad range of responsibilities, including curating and executing external applications for research funding as well as contributing to the administrative team in support of maintaining a dynamic functioning EMBL Barcelona site. The postholder will have a direct reporting line to the Head of Grants Services based in Heidelberg (Germany) for Grants Officer responsibilities and a direct reporting line to the Head of Administration EMBL Barcelona/ Senior Legal Advisor based in Barcelona (Spain) for the administrative responsibilities.

Concerning the Grants Officer role, it is important to outline that EMBL has a successful history in identifying and obtaining external funds to further its research activities. Our Grants Services team assists scientists across all EMBL sites in procuring funding for research projects from a variety of external sources. While Grants Services at EMBL are mostly provided centrally to all EMBL sites from its headquarters in Heidelberg, Germany, this role is intended to act as a local focal point for grants needs in Barcelona, working side-by-side with administrative colleagues on site.

From the Administrative Officer role, you will be joining a small to medium sized, agile and very integrated EMBL Administration team, that is completely committed to facilitating, enabling and fostering science, working together with researchers to achieve the same goals. Some of the tasks are listed below, although there is always a novelty involved in the process of implementing and ramping-up a new EMBL site.

The postholder is expected to work collaboratively and effectively with various stakeholders, both at Headquarters and locally; such as scientific teams, Grants Services, Budget Office, Legal Services, EMBLEM (for technology transfer and IP issues), Data Protection, Compliance and HR.

Your role

Grants Officer responsibilities will include, but not be limited to, the following:

  • Identifying sources of funding both for pre- and postdocs and group leaders at EMBL Barcelona and informing them about funding opportunities, eligibility, procedures and deadlines.
  • Ensuring deadlines at every stage of the grant process are met.
  • Liaising with grant-giving bodies to ascertain eligibility and compliance with their terms and conditions according to EMBL internal rules and regulations,.
  • Establishing collaboration and participating in already existing networks of grants officers of research organisations in Barcelona and in Spain.
  • Actively communicating and providing training to scientists at different career stages about funding opportunities and general grant writing skills.
  • Supporting the scientists in developing applications - particularly in the non-scientific sections.
  • Providing support during the run-time of externally funded projects to help fulfil reporting obligations and other aspects of project management as necessary.
  • Reviewing contracts, consortium agreements and other documents, referring them to the appropriate legal advisor.
  • Defining and documenting grant processes for EMBL Barcelona (in close collaboration with relevant departments at EMBL Heidelberg and EMBL Barcelona Administration) on ethics, invoicing and HR requirements on grants, or any other areas identified by the Head of Grants Services.
  • Routine office duties such as the input of database information, dealing with correspondence, maintenance grant-related intranet information, maintenance of funders’ information and rules, especially as these affect EMBL.
You will be required to travel to Heidelberg, Germany from time to time, mainly to ensure alignment with the Grants Services team. Initial training in Headquarters will be required to understand relevant grant process, tools and systems.You will be expected to keep yourself informed of the terms and conditions of a wide range of grant giving bodies.

Administrative Officer responsibilities will involve carrying out tasks in the EMBL Barcelona Administration department. The Administrative Officer responsibilities will be determined by the profile of the person and/or the needs of the site, including but not limited to the ones listed below. Although experience in other areas of administration may be considered, experience on the following fields would be of particular interest:
  • Legal/contract officer experience, in order to legally review consortium agreements, grant conditions and any other not grant-related legal documents.
  • Human Resources experience, of particular interest to follow up the grant conditions during the contract duration; and other tasks such as support on recruitment, onboarding or other HR-related tasks.
  • Purchase or procurement experience, or in general experience in negotiating with providers.
The postholder may perform any other activity within the department of administration, either as required by the Head of Administration of EMBL Barcelona (including back-up of other colleagues) or, insofar as it is possible, to develop skills in an administrative field of interest of the postholder. In case of an existing specialisation, and under certain conditions, the title of the administrative position may be further defined after the selection of the postholder.

You have

  • Education to degree level. An understanding of biomedical research and a biology and/or a scientific, legal, HR or purchasing degree and/or background would be an asset.
  • Ideally, have at least two years grants administration experience, preferably including project management.
  • Ideally, worked in a renowned research organisation and are familiar with the Spanish local, regional and national funding landscape.
  • Fluency in English and Spanish.
  • Computer literacy, including a good working knowledge of Excel, Word and Outlook.
  • Ability to ensure that matters are dealt with efficiently, effectively and in a timely manner, paying attention to detail and with the ability to work to demanding deadlines and managing a high workload.
  • The ability to deal and collaborate with people in a friendly and professional manner and to establish effective channels of communication and liaison in a multi-cultural environment.
  • Flexibility, service-oriented attitude, start-up mentality and good judgement.
  • Self-initiative and the ability to work both independently with a minimum of supervision and as part of a team.

You might also have

  • Experience working abroad, or in an international environment, including a scientific or an Intergovernmental Organisation, would be beneficial.
  • Knowledge of additional languages would be beneficial.

Why join us

EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation with a very collegial and family friendly working environment. The remuneration package comprises a competitive salary, a comprehensive pension scheme, medical, educational and other social benefits, as well as financial support for relocation and installation, including your family.

What else you need to know

We are Europe’s flagship research laboratory for the life sciences – an intergovernmental organisation performing scientific research in disciplines including molecular biology, physics, chemistry and computer science. We are an international, innovative and interdisciplinary laboratory with more than 1700 employees from many nations, operating across six sites, in Heidelberg (HQ), Barcelona, Hinxton near Cambridge, Hamburg, Grenoble and Rome.

As part of EMBL’s mission, Administration provides services to all personnel members across six sites in order to promote molecular biology across Europe, and to create a centre of excellence for leading young molecular biologists. Administrative positions are connected to but not dependent on scientific work and knowledge. Thus, we aim to establish a dynamic and collaborative working environment across the whole of EMBL to uncover the most of our employees’ potential.

Please note that appointments on fixed term contracts can be renewed, depending on circumstances at the time of the review.

Join EMBL and you’ll join a community of world-class researchers and skilled professionals working together to uncover the secrets of life.

We offer attractive conditions and benefits to attract and retain the brightest talent. Learn more.

One laboratory. Six locations. Global reach.

The European Molecular Biology Laboratory is a single organisation spread across six European locations. Each of our sites hosts its own research units, services and facilities.

EMBL is Europe’s leading life sciences laboratory.

EMBL seeks to better understand the molecular basis of life. In the process, we’re changing European science.