Systems Developer – NBN Trust

Would you like to really make a difference, helping conserve the UK’s wildlife? And make your mark by developing the ‘NBN Atlas’ as a world-leading database?

Do you yearn for a challenge? To break out of the mould and be an all-rounder? Not only to develop, administer the databases and servers, but advise, design and deliver IT projects?

Yes? Then please read on….!

Please be advised that the requirements for this post such as desired areas of knowledge and expertise have been revised, as well as the salary.

Job details

Salary: £35,000 to £45,000 pa depending on experience.

Location: Nottingham City Centre.

Type: Initially a 3-year contract with the potential for permanency.

Hours: Full or part time – we are also able to offer flexible working for this position.  The full time week is 35 hours per week, exclusive of lunch breaks.

Closing date: 7 October 2017.

Interview date: To be confirmed, interviews will be held in Nottingham.

The role

We are looking for a systems developer to fill a new role for the NBN Trust. The developer’s role is to take the lead in the design, development, testing, implementation and ongoing support and maintenance of the NBN’s data sharing infrastructure the NBN Atlas.

Working as part of a small team, this is a new and key role reporting directly to the CEO. The post holder may also be involved in liaising with our users, primarily by phone or email and providing technical advice and support to the NBN Secretariat team.

The right candidate for this role needs be comfortable being the “full stack” developer. Not only will you be required to provide the software development tasks using a range of languages, but also managing back-ups, migrations and setting up virtualized environments from scratch. There are a range of skills set out in the essential experience and all of these will be required for the role to varying degrees. Therefore, the right candidate will need to be able to demonstrate experience with the majority of these and be willing to pick up the rest.

The NBN’s Technical Team will consist of this role and another newly recruited member of staff, the Technical and Data Support officer. However, you will have support when required from our current external developer who has deployed this platform up till now and is employed by CSIRO. As well as an international community of developers working on the Atlas infrastructure and developers within our network partners.

This post holder will also be required to attend technical advisory group meetings to discuss the NBN Atlas development and progress and may be required to attend UK and international meetings and conferences.

In return we can offer you the opportunity to work on developing the largest species data base for any country in the world make your mark by developing the NBN Atlas as a world – leading database use your ideas in developing software to share data freely and openly develop your skills in software development work with a great team based in the centre of Nottingham


Key Responsibilities:

o Development of the NBN Atlas infrastructure – based on the Atlas of Living Australia’s open source software and developed by CSIRO

o Providing  guidance  and  advice  to  other  members  of  the  NBN  Secretariat  regarding technical aspects of the NBN Atlas

o Building relationships with developers in our partner organisations and the wider Atlas development community, including in other countries

o Develop solutions to delivery problems

o Develop high quality software specifications, project plans and documentation

o Providing support for the wider work of the NBN Secretariat as required


Essential experience:

o   Strong working knowledge of Linux and cloud service environments

o   Grails and/or Java programming and documentation

o   Web standards and protocols including CSS and Javascript

o   Background in developing RESTful services

o   Management of relational databases


Essential Skills

o   Ability to communicate effectively with a wide range of people from novice users to technical experts

o   Self-motivated with the ability to effectively prioritise workload

o   Project management skills, particularly as applied to computing

o   Ability to learn technical skills quickly

o   Willingness to investigate new technologies as required


Desirable Experience

o   NoSQL databases

o   working with Geospatial projects

o   Biodiversity informatics knowledge

o   full software development life-cycle including organising, planning, liaison with stakeholders, development, testing, release and maintenance of projects.


The National Biodiversity Network Trust is a charitable environmental organisation whose aim is to share biological data and information freely and openly. Following the recent launch of our new portal the NBN Atlas, we are seeking to directly employ a systems developer to cement our role as the leading biological data sharing organisation.

To date, over 215 million species records have been shared through the NBN Atlas. We need you to grow the NBN Atlas though ongoing development, testing, maintenance and support. The role will also involve providing guidance, advice and support to our wide range of users from novices to technical experts. In addition other countries are developing similar databases and looking to us for advice. Working with colleagues across the world will also form part of your remit.

The NBN provides a digital infrastructure to facilitate the sharing wildlife information in the UK. By providing easy access to the information people need about wildlife, informed decisions can be made to ensure our natural environment is diverse and sustainable now and in the future. The principal objectives of the Trust are:

• to improve and ensure the accuracy and verifiability of collected biodiversity data and to promote its effective collation and interpretation;

• to develop an electronic network connecting all known data holders through the internet, and to promote public access, with appropriate safeguards for sensitive and personal data.

More information

Think that you might be interested but not have all the skills – please give us a call. We’d love to chat to you.

For more information contact or call the office on 0115 9247132

Application information

The application pack can be found below:

Systems Developer – Information for Applicants 

Application Form (Word)

Application Form (PDF)

Guidance Notes

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