Senior Bioinformatician

Updated: 2 months ago
Location: Cambridge, ENGLAND
Deadline: 29 Apr 2021

The Opportunity:

We have an exciting new opportunity for a Senior Bioinformatician to implement the genomics pipelines of the Tree of Life  programme.

About Us:

The Tree of Life Programme at the Sanger Institute was established to develop and deliver platforms that will transform our understanding of the natural world through high-volume and high-quality biodiversity genomics. 

The Informatics Infrastructure team is currently building an infrastructure to support the generation and analysis of tens of thousands of genomes for Tree of Life. The two largest projects currently are the Darwin Tree of Life  and Aquatics Symbiosis Genomics  projects, which combined aim to sequence over 73,000 species, and more are expected through the Earth BioGenome Project . Whatever your favourite species is, it will come through the pipeline and you will be part of the team that assembles its genome and helps making discoveries.

About the Role:

You will be developing the suite of genomics and comparative genomics pipelines that will drive the analysis of all the genomes being generated by the programme. You will be working with software developers and bioinformaticians within the programme to adapt, improve, and integrate existing software, to best answer the scientific questions of the programme. The pipelines will run on Sanger’s world-class computational resources, including an OpenStack private cloud environment, a 17,000+ core computational cluster and many petabytes of high-speed distributed filesystems and object stores.

About You:

You are a skilled Bioinformatician with a demonstrated experience of designing and running genomics or comparative genomics pipelines on large datasets. You uniquely combine extensive genomics knowledge and hands-on experience writing software and bioinformatics analyses. You have a substantial experience using a compute cluster and running pipelines at large scale. You are attentive to the literature, and want to discuss with the faculty teams in order to select the best tool for each job. You are an excellent communicator with the ability to build effective working relationships with internal and external stakeholders at all levels including influencing key decision makers on the best solutions for the project. 

Essential Skills


  • MSc, or equivalent working experience, in Bioinformatics, Software development, or Computer Science
  • Working knowledge of UNIX/Linux and shell scripting
  • Experience of a scripting language such as Python
  • Experience designing and running genomics or comparative genomics pipelines

Competencies and Behaviours:

  • Ability to prioritise, manage workload, and deliver agreed activities consistently
  • Ability to work collaboratively with a range of stakeholders at all levels
  • Ability to communicate effectively (verbal and written) with all levels of management & staff
  • High degree of initiative and self-motivation
  • Ability to effectively explain technical issues to non-technical users
  • Ability actively question and listen to be able to problem solve
  • High level of problem-solving skills
  • Ability to think laterally in order to combine disparate technologies

Ideal Skills


  • Experience running and writing workflows in languages such as SnakeMake or Nextflow
  • Experience in development best practice, git, CI/CD, working in an Agile environment

Other information

Whilst the developments around COVID-19 continue to evolve, the Wellcome Genome Campus is closed for all but essential functions and facilities. 

People remain at the centre of everything that we do and the majority of our staff are now working remotely to ensure continuity of operations, making use of remote communication and collaboration tools.

Interviews will be taking place virtually and the successful candidate should expect to be fully supported through remote on-boarding and working from home until the Campus re-opens to all staff. This approach may vary for individuals located overseas and/or where a visa is required and starting will be based on a number of factors, we will be able to provide specialist advice to those affected candidates.

Application Process:

Please apply with your CV only by the closing date 29th April 2021

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