The Pirbright Institute, Surrey – Laboratory Technician (Level 3)

Your next step towards your dream career…


Apply by: 21st July 2021


When? Monday – Friday, 40 hours per week

Where? Surrey

For how long? 21 months

How much? You’ll earn £15,452.00 a year, plus you will receive all the training and support you need to become a qualified Level 3 Laboratory Technician .



You’ll join The Pirbright Institue as an apprentice Laboratory Technician for a fixed period of 21 months.



The Pirbright Institute delivers world-leading research to understand, predict, detect and respond to viral disease outbreaks. We study viruses of livestock that are endemic and exotic to the UK, including zoonotic viruses, by using the most advanced tools and technologies to understand host-pathogen interactions in animals and arthropod vectors.

You’ll have the support of a mentor, a colleague whose job it is to keep an eye on your training and development in the role.


You’ll also devote about 20% of your time to working towards a Level 3 Laboratory Technician. You’ll be trained by an expert tutor from Tiro, who will make sure you develop the knowledge, skills, and work habits you’ll need to succeed in your apprenticeship.


More details:

The Research Services department at The Pirbright Institute provides a direct interface with the science users. The capability is made up of four teams, Laboratory management, Cell culture, Stores and the Central Services Unit (CSU). The Cell culture unit provides primary and secondary cells to researchers and Reference Laboratories. The CSU delivers a number of key services to the scientists, including the provision of sterile glassware and instruments and media services. CSU also delivers waste stream management, laundry and cleaning services.


Responsible for supporting the cell culture team which will include:

  • Maintaining cell lines using aseptic technique.
  • Using microscopy to monitor the growth of cells.
  • Accurately recording and reporting data.
  • Accurately following methods for cell culture production.
  • Maintaining essential laboratory equipment such as incubators, microscopes, water systems and pipettes.
  • Trained to complete pipette calibration and maintain calibration records
  • Verification of temperature sensors.
  • Preparing primary cells from tissue samples.
  • Responsible for ensuring enough sterile tools and glassware for completion of daily tasks.
  • Maintaining training record to demonstrate competency in cell culture methods.
  • Follow good laboratory practice related to Safety, behaviour and hygiene.

Responsible for supporting the Central Services Unit which will include:

  • Preparation of sterile apparatus for use by researchers.
  • Accurately following methods and documenting batch information for the preparation of various reagents within the media department’s catalogue.
  • Responsible for ensuring enough sterile and non sterile glassware is available for media preparation as required.
  • Dispensing filtered media using aseptic technique.
  • Maintaining essential production equipment such as AgarClave, mixers, pumps, balances and type 1 water system.
  • Trained to calibrate and maintain balances and pH & Conductivity meters.
  • Maintaining KPIs across Media and Glasswash services.
  • Trained to use filters, autoclaves and hot air ovens for sterilisation purposes.
  • Follow good laboratory practice related to Safety, behaviour and hygiene.
  • Assisting with monitoring and fulfilling stock requests for media & glassware.
  • Trained to utilise our online service request system (TopDesk) for media orders.


Who we’re looking for:

  • Skills:
  •  Evidence of excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Computer literate
  • Time management
  • Good decision maker
  • Good problem-solver
  • Ability to work independently



  • Self-motivated
  • Keen to learn
  • Adaptable with can-do attitude
  • Proactive
  • Able to work within a team as well as on own initiative
  • Personable & friendly
  • Accurate & precise


  • Qualifications:
  •  Must be over the age of 18
  • 5 GCSEs ‘Grade C and above’ which must include at least double Science, Maths and English



What next?

  • Prospect of full time employment after the successful completion of the apprenticeship
  • RSci Tech



Once you’ve completed your apprenticeship, you may be offered a more permanent job with The Pirbright Institute . If not, your qualification will open doors elsewhere in a related field. Or you might decide to move on to a higher-level apprenticeship.