Research Bid Manager

Location of position is: Slough, though York and Llanelli will be considered

Salary in the range: £34,925 - £41,703; the level of appointment and associated salary will depend upon qualifications and experience.

About NFER

Founded in 1946, NFER is the UK's leading independent provider of research and assessment for education. We carry out research for the Department for Education, the Welsh Government, the Education Endowment Foundation and clients from across the world. As a non-for-profit, we exist to make a difference to education and the lives of learners, by providing robust evidence to inform policy and practice.

About the role

As a Research Bid Manager you would be based in the Bid Team, within NFER’s Research Department. The Bid Team is made up of colleagues from social research, information and data management and proposal development backgrounds. We oversee all of NFER’s proposal activity. You would be working on proposals to win contracts for large international education surveys and complex evaluations of policy interventions to improve teaching and learning, for example.

What will the role involve?

  • planning and chairing proposal and pitch development meetings, including steering decision-making
  • inputting ideas for our bid winning strategy, ensuring our proposals and pitches are robust, persuasive and cost effective
  • finding solutions to issues as they arise, liaising and negotiating with commissioners, colleagues and partners as needed
  • leading or supporting the project management of proposals
  • writing and editing sections of proposal text to client-ready standards
  • identifying suitable track record examples, researching relevant information and inputting intelligence from the wider Bid Team data into bids
  • Inputting to decisions about what NFER should and shouldn’t bid for.

There are also opportunities to get involved with the team’s wider work, which includes:

  • Driving forward NFER’s research methods work, including building up our library of methods text and good practice examples.
  • Developing and updating process guidance, proposal templates and related resources.
  • Delivering coaching and training and sharing good practice with colleagues.
  • Analysing and reporting on bids data and market intelligence, often for the Senior Management Team We would aim to involve you with the aspects of our wider work that you are most interested in and have the aptitude for. What the role does not involve?
  • Carrying out research projects – once we’ve won a contract, we hand it over to research colleagues.
  • Being the overall lead for proposals.

Why is this a great role?

“I have enjoyed my bid management role with NFER and have learned a lot. It is a fantastic opportunity for an experienced social researcher to take on a strategically important, exciting and fast-paced role within the UK’s leading educational research organisation. You will get the opportunity to extend your methodological knowledge; develop your leadership, negotiation, numeracy and writing skills; and engage meaningfully with colleagues at different levels throughout all tranches of the business”. (Recent postholder)

About you

To be successful in this role you will need;

  • experienced in managing and writing winning highly bespoke proposals
  • used to taking full responsibility for writing or editing sections of prose to a client-ready standard
  • excellent at developing strategies to win highly competitive research and assessment contracts
  • experienced or interested in social research and/or assessment methods
  • able to coach colleagues in bid writing and pitching skills
  • solution-focused, flexible and collegiate, with excellent communication skills
  • able to work at pace.

We are keen to hear from candidates who have worked in social research and are looking to move into a more strategic, business development-focused role. However, we will also seriously consider candidates from other sectors, who can demonstrate the ability to pick up new areas of expertise very quickly.

How to Apply

Applications should be made using the Foundation’s standard application form and returned to: recruitment@nfer.ac.uk

Applicants for this post should note that it is exempt from the “Rehabilitation of Offenders Act”; further details of NFER’s Disclosure & Barring Service (“DBS”) checking procedure are in the attached “Further Particulars” for this post.

For further information about this position please call: 01753 637269. Please do not contact this number if you are an agency/third party. This number is strictly for candidates only.

Job description: Word | PDF

Application form: Word | PDF

Equal opportunities form: Word | PDF