Trainee Business Support Assistant (Development Role)

Durham University

Trainee Business Support Assistant (Development Role) (
Job Number:
Accommodation & Commercial Services
Grade 1:  £20,948 per annum
Open-Ended/Permanent  Full Time
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Working Arrangements: We operate hybrid working and are on site a minimum of two days per week, depending on business needs, with the remaining time working from home.
Closing Date
: 05-Nov-2023, 6:59:00 PM
Disclosure and Barring Service Requirement: Not Applicable. 

Job Title:                               Trainee Business Support Assistant

                                               (development role)

Department:                          Estates and Facilities

                                               Accommodation and Commercial Services

Grade:                                   Grade 1

Salary range:                        £20,948

Working arrangements:      Full time (35 hours per week)


                                               Five days from seven, primarily Monday to Friday, including day release at College to study for an NVQ Level 3 in Business Administration

                                               Covering between the hours of 8.00am and 6.00pm

                                               May be required to work evenings and weekends, as business demands

                                               Possible hybrid working one day per week, following completion of induction/training (at least six month-period), depending on business needs

Closing date:                        Sunday 5th November 2023


The University

At Durham University, we are proud of our people, because they are at the heart of our globally outstanding institution, which is a key part of our local community.  We inspire our people to do extraordinary things and we invite you to join our fantastic team.


Across the University, we have a huge variety of roles and responsibilities, which together make us one large and successful community.  Whether you are at the very start, middle or end of your career, there is a role for you.  We believe everyone has their own unique skills to offer.


At the University we promote and actively champion equality, diversity and inclusion.  It is crucial that everyone can be themselves and can flourish in an environment where everyone respects each other and is treated fairly.  We want our people and wider community to feel happy, secure and proud to be a part of Durham.  We are looking for the same values in you.


We welcome and encourage applications from members of groups who are under-represented in our work force including people with disabilities, women and black, Asian and minority ethnic communities.  For more information on our EDI strategy and values, click here .

The Role and Department

The Trainee Business Support Assistant role provides a fantastic development opportunity for someone seeking a career in business administration.  You will learn and undertake a wide range of administrative duties to support the entire Estates and Facilities Directorate and wider-University, in delivering essential services and achieving their strategic objectives, including, but not limited to, photocopying, processing mail, maintaining records, answering the telephone, raising and receipting orders, etc.


You should be a team player, who has a flexible attitude, and the drive and enthusiasm to succeed.


This is a development role, and you will develop administrative support skills.  You will undertake a development programme, leading to a formal NVQ Level 3 qualification in Business Administration.  The qualification will form part of a development plan focusing on the requirements of the Grade 2 (Business Support Assistant) and Grade 3 (Senior Business Support Assistant) roles, while also considering your individual needs.  It is anticipated that the development role will be over a two-year period and progress will be regularly reviewed against agreed outputs in your development plan; however, it may be extended if the University considers it necessary.


If you are unable to meet the full requirements and performance levels at the end of the development process, you may be retained at the lower grade.


The Estates and Facilities Directorate provides a range of essential services to Durham University and is responsible for managing, maintaining and developing the infrastructure and building fabric of the various campuses.


Working at Durham

A competitive salary is only one part of the many fantastic benefits you will receive if you join the University: you will also receive access to the following fantastic benefits:


·           27 days annual leave, plus 8 public holidays and 4 customary days, a total of 39 days per year, including time off between Christmas and New Year.

·           No matter how you travel to work, we have you covered.  We have parking across campus, a cycle to work scheme which helps you to buy a bike and discount with local bus and train companies.

·           Discounts via our benefits portal including money off at supermarkets, high street retailers, IT products such as Apple, the cinema and days out at various attractions.

·           Onsite nursery and children’s clubs during the summer holidays.

·           Lots of support for health and wellbeing including discounted membership for our state-of-the-art sport and gym facilities and access to a 24-7 Employee Assistance Programme.

·           The opportunity to take part in staff volunteering activities.

·           Family friendly policies, including maternity and adoption leave, which are among the most generous in the higher education sector (and likely above and beyond many employers).

·           If you are keen on advancing in your role or career, we have a genuine passion for developing our colleagues, from qualifications to IT skills, courses and apprenticeships.

·           Generous pension schemes.

What you need to demonstrate when you apply


To be considered for this role, here are the skills/experience we’re looking for:


Essential Criteria


1.      Good spoken and written communication skills.

2.      Basic digital skills including the ability to use the internet and email.  

3.      Five GCSEs at least Grade C or level four (or equivalent) including English Language and Mathematics or appropriate experience. 

4.      Experience of, or the ability to, work in a team (work or leisure-related).

5.      Ability to manage time to meet deadlines.

6.      Ability to follow instructions, spoken or written, accurately.

7.      Evidence of good attention to detail.


Desirable Criteria


8.     Evidence of personal development to develop and/or maintain skills.

9.     Desire and willingness to take part in additional development activity.

10.  Relevant work experience (paid or voluntary).


How to Apply


We prefer to receive applications online.  When you apply you need to submit a CV and/or a statement that tells us your experience and gives examples of how you meet the criteria above and/or submit the application form and include the information within the form.


We will update you about your application at various points throughout the selection process, via automated emails from our e-recruitment system.  Please check your spam/junk folder periodically to make sure you have not missed any of our updates.


Who to contact for more information


If you would like to have a chat or ask any questions about the role or if you are struggling to complete the application process, Charley Murdoch, Business Support Team Leader, [email protected] , would be happy to speak to you.


Typical Role Requirements


Here are the kind of activities that you’ll be asked to undertake and ways in which you’ll be expected to operate.


Service Delivery

·           Provide an excellent, responsive service to our staff, students and visitors, etc by carrying out your tasks using the relevant procedures (which we will provide training for).

·           Learn how to use everyday equipment and applications e.g., printers, scanners, laminators, shredders, Microsoft 365, Teams, SharePoint, etc., from more experienced colleagues.

·           Follow instructions from more experienced colleagues to deliver set tasks.

·           Learn and adhere to general health, safety and security procedures.

·           Log and store routine information.

·           Carry out basic administrative tasks.

·           Be trained to provide administrative support to all areas within Estates and Facilities Directorate.



·           Help and cooperate with the rest of your team.

·           Support other team members to carry out their tasks, when asked, to deliver an excellent student, staff or visitor service.

·           Bring any problems to the attention of more senior colleagues.



·           Show a commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion and the University’s values.

·           Use digital devices and apps (such as email) to communicate with staff, students, and visitors.

·           Any other reasonable duties.


Please note that in submitting your application, Durham University will be processing your data.  We would ask you to consider the relevant University Privacy Statement , which provides information on the collation, storing and use of data.


When appointing to this role the University must ensure that it meets any applicable immigration requirements, including salary thresholds which are applicable to some visas.

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