PA to Officers

2 weeks ago
Job ID
Corporate Management
Closing Date
Position Type
Permanent Full-Time

Job Scope

Provide a confidential and proactive PA service to two of the four Officers of the Royal Society including but not limited to diary management, internal and external communications, travel and various administrative and secretarial support services. Work alongside an additional PA to the Officers, the PAs to the President and the Executive Director, the Executive Assistant and Governance Officer and the Fellowship Manager, to ensure that the Central Secretariat is efficiently run and that work is done to a high standard. The post holder will collaborate with colleagues across the Society to ensure efficient use of time and resources in support of the Officers. Alongside the additional PA to the Officers, work with the Fellowship manager in supporting general activities of the Central Secretariat.


The Officers are Fellows of the Royal Society, not employees, who are elected by the Fellowship to be Trustees of the Royal Society. They are all active professors at universities in the UK and/or sit on various boards external to the Society, so will be absent from the building for long periods. As such the role requires a timely in-person and virtual PA service to two of the four Officers including:


Diary Management

  • Manage a detailed RS diary across time zones with some support to non-RS activities
  • Monitor inboxes and work with internal team to manage Officer workflow
  • Regular communications with the Officers regarding calendar updates and availability
  • Work with internal teams to schedule regular and ad hoc meetings with Officers and teams
  • Communicate with all levels of staff, Fellows, institutions, government agencies and businesses
  • Maintain strict confidentiality and discretion when dealing with all correspondence and discussions relating to the Officers and wider executive administration
  • Awareness of the activities of the Executive Office

Travel and accommodation

  • Organise substantial travel and accommodate real time changes in line with RS policy
  • Coordinate travel and related logistics (e.g. itineraries, on-line check-ins, ticket deliveries, visa, invitation letters, accommodation) with internal and external teams with internal and external

Expenses processing

  • Process RS credit card and RS expense claims in line with RS policy
  • Create Purchase Orders internal system
  • Recharge expenses across internal and external departments as required


  • Act as the first point of contact for the Officers to do with Society matters
  • Prepare correspondence on behalf of the Officers, filter incoming mail
  • Print briefing packs for meetings, occasional delivery of materials
  • Arrange meetings/events including venue and accommodation booking, invitations, catering and background material
  • Maintain Officer profiles, manage and archive Officer filing system
  • Communicate with Facilities, Conferencing/Catering, Reception, and IT/AV for support as required
  • Occasional substitution for the PA to the Officers, the PA to the Executive Director or the PA to the President and provide handovers during absences / holidays

Central Secretariat

    • Awareness of Central Secretariat committees meeting schedule and activities
    • Provide general onsite support to Fellows includes maintaining Fellows room, respond to inquiries related to Fellows and e-Lect system
    • Work with Fellowship Manager to provide in-person support for CGHC meetings, Business Election meeting and Anniversary Day activities
    • Maintain all information about Officers on the Society’s website



Key Knowledge and Skills Required

Key knowledge and skills required


  • At least three consecutive years providing EA/PA support to two or more executive and/or ex-officio directors
  • Highly organised, consistent, possesses strong time management skills and completes tasks to deadlines
  • Providing timely virtual and in-person support with an attention to detail
  • Working both individually with minimal supervision and in a team setting
  • Ability to communicate clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing
  • Ability to work within a fast-paced setting, to multitask and work on several projects concurrently
  • Ability to build relationships with people at all levels, both within the organisation and externally
  • Advanced in MS Outlook and Word, efficient use of Excel and other applications
  • Experience using purchase order systems and internal databases
  • Understanding of good governance practices of a modern charity
  • Understanding of publicly funded institutions
  • Thorough knowledge of the Society and its organisational structure
  • Thorough knowledge of the Society’s election process


  • 1. Self-Management (intermediate)


Key Indicators: managing stress/ effective & efficient/ self-motivated/ enthusiastic/ confident/ self-awareness



·         Self-motivated, works efficiently unsupervised

·         Produces results under pressure and within the allocated timeframe

·         Can manage demeanour in stressful situations

·         Pushes for the best results


  • 2. Working with others (intermediate)


Key Indicators: collaborative/ shares knowledge/ giving & receiving feedback/ engaging & networking/ situational & organisational awareness



  • Proactively communicates information and follows up with others to ensure timely completion of work
  • Contributes ideas and identifies opportunities to work with others both within the team and across the organisation
  • Willing to provide feedback to sectional colleagues when requested
  • Produces succinct communications, presentations and papers for senior colleagues
  • Understands when to seek senior advice on potentially delicate negotiations
  • Practices confidentiality and good judgement when information sharing


3. Resource management (essential)


Key Indicators: budget management/ organisation/ prioritising/ results focus/ quality focus



  • Detail-oriented and thorough planning to best maximise Officers’ time
  • Manages own workload prioritising according to business needs
  • Is aware and works within budgetary and resource constraints, works in line with relevant internal policies
  • Is flexible and adapts to changing circumstances and priorities
  • Looks for ways to improve quality or results
  • Meets the standards of quality expected for their role


4. Critical thinking (intermediate)


Key Indicators: accuracy/ attention to detail/ analytical/ decision making/ judgement/ problem solving/ creativity/ innovative



  • Determines and clarifies the exact requirements of any situation
  • Thoroughly checks information for accuracy and raises concerns if information is inaccurate
  • Extracts the key points succinctly, clearly and accurately
  • Puts forward suggestions for improvement concerning current processes or systems
  • Tries different ways of doing things to get the best results


5. Adaptability (intermediate)


Key Indicators: adaptable/ flexible/ dealing with new situations



  • Overcomes obstacles and is not deterred by setbacks; checks assumptions and first principles and works out alternative approaches
  • Reacts proactively to new challenges and works in a flexible manner to produce solutions
  • Provides feedback and participates on discussions surrounding new ideas approaches or projects


6. Managing people and relationships (essential)


Key Indicators: motivates others/ builds rapport/ customer focus & stakeholder engagement/ discreet/ diplomatic



  • Values and appreciates the importance of feedback
  • Collaborative approach, shares responsibility for the performance and workload of the team where appropriate
  • Handles requests promptly and politely
  • Respects opinions and deals appropriately with complaints



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