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Blood Cancer UK • London/Hybrid

Research Involvement Lead

Employment type:  Full time
Salary:  £41,000 - £46,000 / year

Remote-first – With Office Locations

Fully flexible hours

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Job Description

We exist to fund research into beating blood cancer. In the past 60 years, we’ve invested more than £500 million into blood cancer research which has led to improved treatments and saved lives. Everything we do in the next five years will be based on a single aim – to stop people dying of blood cancer or the side effects of its treatments. We want to put people affected by blood cancer at the centre of everything we do. As Research Involvement Lead, you’ll be responsible for leading a programme of patient and public involvement in research, a core component of our charity wide involvement strategy. This role will ensure that our research strategy and funding programme is shaped by the priorities and needs of people affected by blood cancer. You’ll review and refine our processes to ensure they are in line with sector best practice and that they meet the needs of our community of people affected by blood cancer. You’ll further embed effective and meaningful involvement at all stages of the research cycle at Blood Cancer UK. You’ll also work to support the involvement of people affected by blood cancer in external research and strategic projects across the UK. You will ensure that the research we and others fund is patient focussed and has the potential to accelerate progress and deliver the maximum impact for the communities we support. Part time applications (minimum 28 hours a week) will be considered for the right candidate, please specify whether you wish to work full time or part time in your cover letter.

Key Responsibilities

Provide strategic oversight of our research involvement activities

  • Lead the delivery of our strategic work focused on involving people affected by blood cancer in research, in line with best practice in the medical research sector.
  • Co-design systems to ensure that people who take part in research involvement activities receive appropriate support and effective ongoing communication to maintain engagement and ensure members have a positive and meaningful experience.
  • Establish effective processes for monitoring and reporting on our public involvement in research activities and impact to disseminate across the organisation.
  • Work closely with the Involvement and Volunteering Manager to ensure alignment to the wider charitable strategy for involvement and volunteering.
  • Establish good working relationships with organisations that promote best practice in public involvement including the Charity Research Involvement Group and Association of Medical Research Charities and act as the source of sector best practice knowledge for the organisation.

2) Support and stewardship of the Patient Voice Grant Advisory Network (PVGAN)

  • Act as first point of contact for those seeking to become involved in research and recruit new members of the PVGAN so we have a diverse group who can support the review of our growing research programme.
  • Ensure all PVGAN members have suitable training to be actively involved at all stages of the research funding cycle.
  • Provide software specific training in the use of our online grants management system Grant Tracker
  • Provide general ongoing support and management of the PVGAN, including 1:1 support for PVGAN members when required.
  • Review PVGAN membership and proactively seek to increase the size of the group, in line with our increasing research funding schemes.
  • Develop a strategy to increase the diversity of the network in line with our commitment to EDI.

3) Deliver meaningful involvement in the strategic direction of research and our grant funding

  • Co-design and deliver meaningful involvement opportunities in our research funding schemes.
  • Develop induction and training plan for both PVGAN members and Panel members to support expectations around patient involvement in decision-making.
  • Develop questions in grant application forms and processes for PVGAN to meaningfully provide their views on research proposals, tailoring as necessary depending on the grant scheme.
  • Manage delivery of involvement of PVGAN in each grant round so sufficient reviews are gained to feed into appropriate points in the adjudication process.
  • Seek feedback from PVGAN on their experience of each involvement activity and actively use this to improve activities and processes.
  • Follow up on results of involvement activities, monitor outcomes and impact and communicate these to PVGAN members.
  • Co-develop and deliver processes to involve patient voice into the development of our research strategy and funding priorities.

4) Support the research community in involvement of patient voice

  • Promote the importance of involvement to the wider blood cancer research community.
  • Facilitate external involvement activities through our matchmaking service and additional external opportunities.
  • Provide support and advice to the research community on best practice on involvement of patients and the public in research.
  • Provide involvement advice and support to research funding partners, ensuring each organisation has meaningful involvement in their processes and opportunity to work with PVGAN.
  • Support the redevelopment and delivery of the involvement programme required by the former Blood Cancer specific NCRI Research Groups once re-established, liaising across the groups and ensuring appropriate support for PVGAN members.

5) General Responsibilities

  • Provide accurate and timely reporting in your area to both internal and external stakeholders when required
  • Contribute to the team being proactive and supportive, and working effectively and efficiently to achieve agreed objectives
  • Contribute to the development and maintenance of strong internal relationships across the charity
  • Undertake other work as required by the Deputy Director of Research and Director of Research, Policy and Services


  • Promote Blood Cancer UK’s vision, mission and core values
  • We’re all fundraisers. This is slightly different for all roles, and your team will have fundraising KPIs and objectives we all work to
  • Attend and assist at Blood Cancer UK events and activities as required (NB this sometimes involves evening and weekend work)
  • Be an effective ambassador for Blood Cancer UK at any activity you attend
  • All staff are expected to adhere to Blood Cancer UK’s policies and procedures
  • Do any other reasonable things your manager needs you to do

Skills, Knowledge and Expertise

  • Experience of volunteer management and patient and public involvement in research
  • A clear understanding of the role and importance of patient and public involvement specifically in health and medical research funding, and of the research funding process
  • Knowledge of sector wide best practice in patient and public involvement
  • Strong relationship management skills, and excellent influencing and communication skills to engage a wide range of audiences
  • Ability to think and work strategically to review and refine systems and processes in line with the needs of multiple stakeholders
  • Efficient, flexible, well organised self-starter with ability to manage multiple projects
  • A positive attitude to technology, insight and data, including an enthusiasm to use new technologies and ways of working to deliver against objectives

Company benefits

Open to part-time employees
Open to job sharing
Open to compressed hours
Enhanced maternity leave – Our maternity/shared parental/adoption offer is 12 weeks at full pay, 12 weeks at half pay, followed by 15 weeks at the statutory rate.
Enhanced paternity leave – Our paternity leave offer is 6 weeks at full pay.
Adoption leave
Shared parental leave
Work from anywhere scheme – For the vast majority of our roles, there is no requirement to work from one of our offices. We meet up as an organisation at 2-4 in-person events each year, such as all-staff away days.
30 days annual leave + bank holidays
Enhanced sick pay – Our enhanced sick pay offer is: Up to two years’ service: 4 weeks full pay and 4 weeks half pay After two years’ service: 12 weeks full pay and 12 weeks half pay
Pregnancy loss leave
Fertility treatment leave
Teambuilding days
Employees are very happy with their working location freedom
Employees are very happy with the flexibility in the hours they work
Employees are very happy with the benefits their company offers
Work-life balance
Employees feel that they can switch off quite easily from work
Role modelling
Employees feel that flexible working is part of the culture
Employees feel they have complete autonomy over getting their work done

Working at Blood Cancer UK

Company employees


Gender diversity (male:female:non-binary)


Office locations

London and Edinburgh

Hiring Countries

United Kingdom

Awards & Achievements

Most flexible companies

Most flexible companies

Flexa100 2024
3rd – Charity & Tech For Good

3rd – Charity & Tech For Good

Industry awards 2023
Most flexible companies

Most flexible companies

Flexa100 2023
1st – Charity & Tech For Good

1st – Charity & Tech For Good

Industry awards 2022

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