RSPB • RSPB Scotland - Orkney

Estate Worker

Employment type:  Full time
Salary:  £19305 - £21417 per annum

3–4 days/week at home

Fully flexible hours

Dog friendly

Job Description

This is a fantastic opportunity to join a friendly team working on a variety of beautiful nature reserves across Orkney. From upland moors to lowland wetlands, meadows to seabird cliffs and islands, our eight RSPB Orkney mainland reserves support a wide range of habitats and species, and we need your practical skills to help keep them special places for wildlife.

We are looking for an energetic and skilled Estate Worker to join the Orkney team and take our conservation goals to new heights. The role is a permanent position and will be full-time.

What’s the role about?

The role will be focused on helping us to improve the habitats across our reserves and keeping our reserve structures well maintained. You’ll be coming into the team at an exciting time when we are looking to grow our habitat management work, and you will be a key player in our ability to do this. Work on the ground will include topping of vegetation, repairing and building fences, keeping our hides, signs and paths in good condition, driving tractors and quad bikes, cutting paths with brush-cutters, herbicide spraying or weed-wiping invasive plants, and cutting back scrub. We have also recently bought a Soucy Track tractor to help cut our wetter fields, and the Estate Worker will be the main driver of this machine.

Line-managed by the Orkney Mainland Warden, you will be based in our Stromness Office and be working within our reserves team. The applicant should enjoy working both independently and with others as part of a team, and the role will involve working in a wide range of habitats, including some tough terrain and frequently challenging weather conditions. You will need to have a good attitude towards health and safety and the demands of working in an upland and island environment.

Key activities will include:

  • Supporting the sites team in the management of the reserve’s habitats, with a focus on operating our large machinery (Soucy track tractor, tractor and flail mowers, and Quad X mowers) to carry out topping, cut and collecting and transportation.
  • Site management which will also include herbicide treatments, ragwort pulling, peatland dam installation and scrub removal.
  • Repairing and constructing stock fences, hides, signage, benches and paths.
  • Routine servicing and maintenance of machinery and vehicles, keeping accurate records, to ensure they are operating safely and efficiently.
  • Livestock counts on various reserves, on a regular basis
  • Working with volunteers at times to achieve tasks, and occasional supervision of contractors.
  • Completing all above tasks in compliance with Health & Safety policy and cross compliance standards to minimise risk to yourself, colleagues and the RSPB.

What we need from you

Essential skills, knowledge and experience:

  • Experience in operating and maintaining tractors and associated implements, and in towing large trailers.
  • Experience in servicing and maintaining vehicles, machinery, tools and equipment to high standards.
  • You will be a practical person, with skills and experience in a range of estate management work, to include constructing and repairing stock fences, and structures such as paths and hides.
  • You will be competent in the use of a range of hand and powered tools, including chainsaw, brush-cutter, knapsack sprayer and ATV, or be willing to learn.
  • Good team working skills, but also capable of working alone.
  • Good adherence to Health and Safety and able to follow all guidance provided.

Desirable knowledge and qualifications:

  • Knowledge and experience of practical land and habitat management for nature conservation.
  • You will be comfortable working with volunteers from a range of backgrounds.
  • Good communication skills and computer literacy, which includes record keeping and some data management.
  • Experience of living and working in remote areas within small communities.
  • A general interest in wildlife and managing reserves for its benefit.

Additional information:
• This role will require occasional weekend, early morning and evening working so will need someone who is able to be flexible.
• As this post will involve transporting tools and materials to a number of dispersed reserves across Orkney and driving a tractor on roads, you will need to be eligible to drive in the UK.

As part of the application process, you will be asked to provide a copy of your CV and complete a short application form. Your CV should include evidence on how you meet the Essential and Desirable skills, knowledge, and experience described above. We would also like you to include a short Cover Letter telling us why you are interested in the job and what you feel you can bring to the role. As the application website only allows you to upload one document, the CV and Cover Letter will need to both be written within the same document.

This is a Permanent Full Time role for 37.5 hours per week.

We are looking to conduct interviews for this position on Orkney in the week beginning 6th March 2023.

For further information about this post please see the attached Recruitment Pack. If you would like to discuss the role further, please contact: Elizabeth Fricker on 07866 578074 or elizabeth.fricker@rspb.org.uk for more information.

The RSPB is an equal opportunities employer. This role is covered by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Before applying for this role, we recommend reading through the candidate guidance notes attached to the top of this advert.

Company benefits

Open to part-time employees
Open to compressed hours
Enhanced maternity leave
Enhanced paternity leave
Adoption leave
Shared parental leave
24 days annual leave + bank holidays
Enhanced sick pay

The FlexScore® is the result of a rigorous 2-step verification of a company’s flexibility

First we assess the flexibility options RSPB provides and then we anonymously survey a statistically significant proportion of their employees to make sure RSPB is as flexible as they say they are. Our assessment is based on the six key elements of flexibility: location, hours, autonomy, benefits, role modelling and work-life balance.

We ask the hard questions so you don’t have to.

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I feel the RSPB is very flexible and this is reflected through the Line Management chain - I know I have the flexibility on a daily basis to start early / finish late, if something crops up at home - I am very satisfied :)

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