Business Process Analyst (10114)

At the SKAO we are coordinating a global effort to deliver one fo the largest science facilities on the planet. The SKAO telescopes will be next-generation instruments that will help to answer key questions in astrophysics, drive technological innovation and support human capital development. 

More than a dozen partner countries and over a thousand scientists and engineers around the world are already on board, making the SKA project an international collaboration like no other, and one of the most ambitious science and engineering endeavours of the 21st century.

Headquartered in the UK, with telescope sites in Australia and South Africa, the SKAO will be one observatory operating two telescopes, an endeavour spanning three continents. Multinational by design, in early 2021 the SKAO became an intergovernmental organisation, one of only a select handful of science infrastructures to do so worldwide.

Our Global HQ is located near the buzzing city of Manchester at the historic Jodrell Bank Observatory, a UNESCO World Heritage site located in the Cheshire countryside. It is home to a rapidly expanding international team of more than a hundred, working in a highly collaborative and inclusive way, in coordination with SKAO teams in Australia and South Africa as part of a global astronomy and engineering community.

Being part of Team SKA means contributing to something extraordinary: a uniquely exciting project to advance human knowledge that will last for decades. In return, we offer a diverse multicultural working environment, 30 days annual leave plus public holidays, a generous pension scheme, regular social events, a family-friendly environment and much more. Come and join us!

Business Process Analyst

An opportunity for an experienced business systems analyst with an appreciation of Research Infrastucture who can influence effectively and thrive on challenge.

Job Location
UK (Head Office)
Area / Department
Business Support function
Contract Type
Competitive salary with generous pension and leave benefits
Closing Date
Ref No

The Role

The SKA Organisation is both transitioning from a UK Limited company to an Inter-Governmental Organisation, the SKA Observatory, as well as simultaneously entering the construction phase of one of the world’s largest scientific projects.

Both of these transitions are stretching the capabilities of the existing processes and systems of the SKA Observatory. The SKA Assurance team is looking for a talented Business Process Analyst to support the integration of the information in the many proprietary information systems that are needed by the Observatory to fulfill its mission. 

The ideal candidate will have undertaken exercises in streamlining business processes in a research infrastructure enterprise such as an observatory, major laboratory or research and development house. They will also have technical skills to support the development of interfaces and workflows between multiple diverse web applications. The successful applicant will need to understand the underlying imperatives of a research infrastructure organisation as opposed to those of an industrial, commercial or government enterprise.

The Business Process Analyst will report to the Head of Assurance, but will work with staff across the Observatory to develop and understand the information requirements of the various roles. In particular, strong relationships are necessary with the Head of IT and the IT Security Specialist. They will need to be comfortable working with stakeholders in a wide range of communities of practice as they will be required to work closely with them to understand their needs, document their processes, and then reach agreement on highest priority business process issues before tackling them in an iterative, agile manner. 

From a technical perspective, they will work closely with other teams in the wider SKA, particularly the Computing and Software teams to help ensure the services they implement conform to SKA software and software development standards and that the resultant process automation leverages and extends existing SKA tools. All SKA software must conform to internal quality standards and abide by the SKA DevSecOps principles.

Full-time hours will be 35 hours per week. Flexible working may be considered compatible with reviews, milestones and site activities.

Key Responsibilities, Accountabilities and Duties

The main functions of this role will be to:
  • Work with stakeholders across the Observatory to understand and document their processes and information management needs.
  • Identify areas requiring improvement within the Observatory’s business systems and processes, and make recommendations for change.
  • Consult on choices for new business software with special regard to their interoperability and information sharing with existing tools
  • Work with other SKA architects and staff with systems responsibilities to develop and maintain a coherent information architecture for the business needs of the SKA Observatory as they evolve.
  • Work with the Head of IT and the Network & IT Security Specialist to ensure that process information management adheres to the SKA ISMS policies and standards.
  • Scope the requirements for, and direct the development of, software compliant with SKA policies and standards, to manage process information across SKA systems - by, for example, providing direct interfaces to master records hosted by other applications, or to synchronize information across systems, transforming it as required.
  • Present findings internally and externally in the form of transparent documentation, presentations, manual and automated reports or verbal communication with stakeholders both to confirm the successful implementation, and to highlight potential issues, and to publicise achievements.

Mandatory Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • Experience of working effectively in complex business system architectures and be able to demonstrate their impact on the successful improvement and evolution of the system and processes;

  • An appreciation of and ability to operate effectively in a research institute environment;

  • A working understanding of new and emerging technologies and roadmaps in information systems;

  • Be able to demonstrate understanding of working based on principles such as lean-agile, continually iterating plans and solving problems to adjust to changing circumstances.

  • Able to commission and manage rollout of the new business software
  • Excellent communication and influencing skills with distributed, highly specialised project teams and stakeholders, involving a wide range of cultures and backgrounds

  • Able to assimilate user requests, working through and with others in order to develop workable and joined up solutions accepted by stakeholders

  • Be willing and able to advocate for well reasoned change to established practice; with a positive and resilient attitude in response to challenge

  • Flexible team player who is adaptable to change


Desirable Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • First hand knowledge of modern business processes such as enterprise resource planning and project management

  • Experience in working in a large engineering/scientific project environment

  • Demonstrable interest for science or astronomy

  • Have significant experience in the development of microservice tools to communicate between modern web APIs.

Equality Diversity and Inclusion Statement

SKA Observatory recognises that our diversity is a strength. We aim to create a welcoming and inclusive environment where everyone feels they belong, and diverse perspectives and ideas thrive. As such, Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion are at the core of SKA Observatory’s agenda.

Our aim to is recruit and retain the most talented individuals, regardless of gender, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, marital status, religion, nationality or background. 

 Women have traditionally been under-represented in the fields of science and engineering; SKA Observatory welcomes and encourages female applicants.  
Where applicants with a disability need facilities or adjustments to enable them to participate in the recruitment process, these will be provided.

SKA Observatory welcome all candidates, especially those from member countries.

The “How to Apply” information contained within the SKA Observatory recruitment portal provides more detail regarding our application and selection approach.