Office for Nuclear Regulation

Nuclear Safety Inspector

The role

Nuclear Inspectors are expected to be capable of undertaking a variety of roles:

The role of a Nuclear Inspector is varied and you are likely to undertake a range of duties during your career. Some Inspectors concentrate on undertaking planned and reactive inspections on site, while others will mainly assess safety submissions or manage discrete intervention projects.

However, the focus is on working as teams to ensure compliance, reassure the public and improve safety standards. When Inspectors find shortcomings in compliance they initially provide advice but may issue verbal and written warnings. The powers available to inspectors enable them to serve Enforcement Notices and ultimately initiate prosecutions. There is also a wide range of powers available under nuclear license conditions.

About you

Applicants would normally be expected to have:

  • A good honours degree, or equivalent, in an appropriate scientific or engineering subject
  • Chartered membership of a relevant professional institution or able to demonstrate performance and/or experience at an equivalent professional level
  • Experience of working in responsible positions in the nuclear sector or other high hazard industry in design, construction, operation or safety appraisal in a safety case environment, with preference given to candidates who can demonstrate a sound understanding of the current nuclear industry context and understanding of relevant principles and practices
  • A full driving licence that permits you to drive in the UK. However, ONR is willing to consider any proposals put forward by disabled applicants that would allow them to do the job by any other means

In addition to high technical ability and expertise, your personal qualities are also important to us. Should you be invited for interview, your abilities in the following areas will also be discussed and assessed:

  • Persuading and influencing
  • Planning and Prioritisation
  • Seeking information and investigation
  • Ability to work effectively within a programme working/matrix environment; and
  • Personal self-awareness

You should also note that if you are invited to interview you will be required to undertake a presentation as part of the selection process.

ONR will consider applicants with a non-nuclear/non-high hazard background, who if appointed would undertake a structured nuclear equivalence process in order to reach Nuclear Safety Inspector level. Applicants should be aware that if individuals are appointed on this basis, they will be appointed on an alternative salary range whilst undergoing the equivalence process.

Our Inspectors come from a variety of mainly nuclear or high-hazard-related backgrounds, but all demonstrate calm and poise when working under pressure in one of the most demanding jobs in the public sector.

Specific job-related expertise required alongside other technical and behavioural competencies are listed within the individual job roles - please see the disciplines section below.

What do you get from us?

Nuclear Safety Inspector

Merseyside, London and Cheltenham

The maximum for this salary band is £81,999, + London weighting of £4,052, if applicable. You will be appointed on a salary dependent on skills and experience.

Furthermore there are excellent opportunities for advancement to Principal Nuclear Inspector (max salary currently £95,781) and Superintending Nuclear Inspector (max salary currently £103,688). Besides the opportunity to make a real difference, there are many benefits working for ONR. In addition to a competitive starting salary, you can expect:

  • A permanent contract of employment including some of the best terms and conditions in the labour market.
  • Five weeks rising to six weeks annual leave plus public holidays and 1 privilege day with the flexibility to purchase additional annual leave (or sell)
  • Active management of your health, safety and wellbeing at work.
  • Excellent working arrangements. Redgrave Court is a state-of-the-art new building including gymnasium, restaurant and excellent, covered, free car-parking facilities.
  • Enormous job satisfaction from your role; excellent worklife balance - arrangements to help staff who wish to combine domestic responsibilities with a career in ONR include opportunities for part-time work, flexible working hours, possibilities of unpaid leave, paid maternity leave and, subject to circumstances, career breaks.
  • Relocation expenses in certain circumstances.
  • You will have good opportunities for career development through structured initial training, our strong commitment to continuing professional development and the chance to undertake other roles including strategy development and work in other parts of ONR.

Pension entitlement

Option of a competitive occupational pension scheme. From 1 April 2015 a new Civil Service pension scheme Alpha was introduced, Alpha is a Career Average pension scheme. This means the final pension is based on a percentage of pensionable earnings from each year of active membership. You will still have the option of joining a Partnership pension. You are encouraged to visit Civil Service Pensions for more information.


As a newly appointed Nuclear Inspector, you will undertake a programme of training designed to introduce you to both your work and that of others. As a new recruit you will be expected to spend a significant period of time at ONR's Bootle office to undertake training and establishing professional networks. Attendance at appropriate discipline conferences and training events will also be included.

ONR offers a comprehensive training and development programme to new recruits coming into the organisation. Specifically, this focuses on providing new recruits with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes they will need to undertake their roles in a nuclear regulatory capacity. This is a necessary complement to the technical skills which new recruits will bring with them into ONR. New Nuclear Safety Inspectors will receive a Limited Warrant on entry to ONR and will follow a defined training programme during their first year to achieve Full Warrant status. Training will continue as new recruits progress through the organisation, to allow staff to progress and develop their careers, and to undertake the variety of regulatory roles which ONR offers.

Throughout your career, support is provided by ONR for any studying required in connection with your work and agreed professional development.

Disciplines within this role

This role covers the following areas:

How to apply

Please visit our recruitment portal.