- Job Title: Quantum Applications Team Lead
- Location: Harwell Campus- Oxfordshire, UK
- Contract: Open-ended
- Salary: £50,702 – £56,336 (Band F) gross per annum dependent on experience *
- Reports To: Deputy Director for Innovation
- Hours: Full Time (We understand the importance of work-life balance, and are happy to discuss the possibility of flexible working with applicants)
- Visa Sponsorship: We are able to sponsor Visa applications, reimburse application fees, and encourage international candidates to apply. A relocation package may be available
- Closing date: Sept. 4, 2022.
*Specialist Allowances, which are a form of additional pay independent of salary, may be applicable for this role for suitably qualified candidates- up to £5000.
Who are we?
As part of the UK’s National Quantum Technologies Programme, UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is leading a programme to establish a National Quantum Computing Centre, which includes a commitment of £93m over 5 years, dedicated to drive development in the field of Quantum Computing and to place the UK at the forefront of the field. The Centre is a joint initiative of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).
A purpose-built National Quantum Computing Centre will be built and operated by UKRI at the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) campus in Oxfordshire. The Centre will be open and operational by December 2022. Until then, the NQCC’s activities are taking place in other facilities on the Harwell Campus or at partnering institutions. The NQCC will sit alongside other departments within the STFC National Laboratories and will be part of the broader National Quantum Technologies Programme (NQTP).
The primary purpose of the NQCC is to fill a key gap in the research and innovation landscape by addressing the challenge of scaling quantum computing. However, this technology is immature and extensive development work is needed to scale the fundamental science to provide usable computing systems.
The NQCC’s initial 5 years will focus on developing a Noisy Intermediate Scale Quantum (NISQ) machine to demonstrate the technology as well as software, algorithm and applications development. The longer-term aim is to scale the technology towards an error and noise-free fault-tolerant machine capability with benchmarking and verification demonstrated in collaboration with the UK and international partners. The NQCC will give assured and direct access to early prototype machines to developers and promote the formation of a strong UK-based quantum computing supply chain.
UK Research and Innovation recognises and values employees as individuals and aim to provide a pay and rewards package that motivates staff to perform to the best of their ability. The reward package includes a flexible working scheme, Defined benefit pension scheme (employer contribution – currently up to 26%), 30 days annual leave allowance plus 10.5 bank holiday/privilege days and a number of other benefits.
What’s the purpose of this role?
You will lead the work of the Quantum Applications Team within the Innovation function. The team focuses on developing quantum applications to provide solutions in response to real use cases. You will act as a technical authority on quantum application development, working collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders, to develop the necessary workflows, and deliver R&D activities, in order to test use cases on real quantum processors and emulators. Your work will support delivery of the NQCC’s goals to scale quantum computing capabilities in support of our technology roadmap, and build a quantum-ready UK economy.
We are particularly encouraging of applicants who have experience in the development and implementation of quantum algorithms.
Key projects will include quantum readiness for critical industry verticals such as Financial Services, Pharmaceuticals, Advanced Materials, Energy, Healthcare, Security and Bio-Chemistry.
The successful candidate must exhibit a pragmatic demeanor towards the work of others, particularly in a collaborative environment, whilst having a good eye for detail interpreting and presenting technical performance data. Project support is provided via Quality Assurance, Monitoring & Evaluation, Procurement and Project Leader support staff within the Operations team, as well as quantum information processing specialists across the technology team and external expertise.
What will I be doing?
- Leading the team developing applications for quantum computing (NISQ-era and error corrected), with responsibility for allocating work and delegating tasks across the team, and ensuring successful delivery
- Working closely with colleagues and external stakeholders to devise solutions in response to meaningful use cases, by identifying and implementing appropriate quantum algorithms
- Leading the development of the necessary codes in order to implement the algorithms on real quantum processors and/or emulators.
- Acting as a technical authority for internal and external stakeholders on quantum application development
- Liaising with internal and external stakeholders to assess the suitability of test use cases from a technical perspective, and identifying the resource requirements (such as appropriate development environments, code bases, libraries, algorithms, computational resources) to develop applications in response to them
- Building and maintaining the workflows across the full lifecycle of quantum application development
- Developing and delivering against a quantum application development roadmap
- Producing technical documents including case studies, reports and publication of non-confidential results
- Acting as an advocate for quantum computing as an important emerging technology for the UK
- Making site visits to commercial and academic partners
- Promoting standard methodology software development across the NQCC
- Attend international meetings with collaborators
- Present work at internal and external meetings both within the UK and internationally
- Working within the Divisions ISO9001 Quality Management System
- Driving Continuous Improvement within the Centre
What experience do I need?
We offer significant development opportunities at the NQCC, but as a starting point you should be able to demonstrate the following:
(Please note the below criteria will be assessed at Shortlisting or Interview stage as indicated)
• Educated to Degree level, or with equivalent relevant experience, in a computing-related field, including physics, maths and computer science (S)
• Experience and demonstrable track record in one or more of the following: (S&I)
o Quantum algorithm development
o Quantum computing applications development
o Quantum programming tools & languages
• Familiarity with a range of professional tools and methods related to the development of applications for quantum computing (S&I)
• Experience with software tools and methodologies for reporting on and delivering R&D projects, including MS Office as a minimum (S&I)
• Excellent communication skills and the ability to lead others, while influencing internal staff and end users (S&I)
• Ability to be proactive, self-motivated, and work in a dynamic environment (S&I)
• Ability to work in a multidisciplinary team, but also demonstrate autonomy within their area of responsibility (S&I)
• Working knowledge of agile methodologies related to project delivery
• Experience using and developing product or software lifecycle management systems (S&I)
• Experience of industry-focused end user engagement or experience in a client-facing role (S&I)
• Prior experience as a team lead, supervisor or mentor, in particular, related to quantum application development
• Experience in project delivery within an ISO9001 quality management system (I)
• Appreciation of health, safety and environment (I)
• Availability to travel/work within the UK and overseas, when required (I)
How to apply
Online applications are only preferred for this role. Please submit a CV and covering letter which clearly outlines how you fulfil the criteria specified along with your motivation for UKRI and the role. Ensure that the job reference number is included in the filename description of each document uploaded. Note that failure to address the above criteria or submit an application without a covering letter may result in the application not being considered. Assessment will only be based upon the content of your submitted covering letter and CV and not the ‘experience’ section of the application.
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