Ofcom

  • Principal Technology Advisor, Network Technologies - SITE

    ID
    2018-1728
    Location(s)
    UK-Edinburgh or London
    Group
    Strategy, International, Technology, Economists
    Salary Details
    competitive
    Job Type
    Full or Part Time – Permanent (including flexible working arrangements)
    Job Level
    Principal
    Closing Date
    08/06/2018
  • About the Job

    This role will require you to provide strategic technical insights and advice so that Ofcom’s policy position and approach to regulation ensures that consumers can benefit from new technological innovation in communications networks delivering a wide range of consumer and business services. We are looking for a self motivated and flexible technologist who can provide thought leadership on the current and emerging communications eco-system, with particular emphasis on fixed networks at both core and access level and the full range of services they can deliver, including PSTN replacement voice through to IPTV. You will need to be capable of leading cross-disciplinary project teams involving: market, policy, economic and legal specialists as well as being a senior specialist yourself in larger scale across Ofcom projects. You will need excellent written and oral presentation skills with an ability to communicate clearly to a senior none technical audience.

    What you will be doing

    The UK’s communications sector is characterised by technology-driven change, providing new and innovative services to consumers. The connectivity provided by today’s fixed, mobile and broadcast networks is central to much of what we do as an economy and a society. Further change is on the way, from faster fixed and mobile broadband networks, to new means of distributing digital content.

     

    Effective and flexible regulation is essential if UK consumers are to get the maximum benefit from technological innovation. The Technology Team plays a key role in achieving this, by ensuring that the way that Ofcom regulates is underpinned by a strong understanding of current and emerging technologies. It undertakes a wide range of projects spanning all the sectors we regulate, including fixed and wireless telecoms, broadcast TV and radio and the internet. Technology innovations are a major driver of change across the sector and so it’s important that Ofcom maintains an in depth knowledge of potential developments.

     

    Members of the team are required to have a broad understanding of a wide range of technologies, whilst also being able to “drill deep” into specific technical issues in their specialist area when required.

     

    Whilst many of the technologies associated with fixed network services are long established, their configuration and management continues to evolve to match the increasing consumer demand for broadband capacity and a better quality of experience. These include the rollout of faster fibre, cable and fixed wireless broadband access networks, the transition from PSTN to voice over IP telephony services, evolution of key core bearer routing and transmission technologies, and a wider use of software controlled flexible network elements.

     

    These developments raise a number of potentially significant issues for Ofcom including:

    • The design and adaptation of fixed broadband services to better match the performance of the underlying delivery network capabilities and characteristics;
    • The use of new technologies to support the cost effective rollout of faster and better quality broadband connectivity;
    • The inevitable transition to VoIP and its effect on legacy services including 999 calls and caller identification;
    • Supporting the delivery of the Government’s broadband universal service obligation (US0) commitment;
    • The resilience of the UK’s communications infrastructure to component failure and malicious attack;
    • The need to prioritise the carriage of some converged network traffic during peak demand, and its links to the broader international ‘net neutrality’ debate on both fixed and mobile networks;
    • The range and quality of fixed broadband services provided to businesses;
    • The demand for fixed (including wireless at the access level) broadband connectivity by the emerging internet of things sector;
    • The wider use of fixed broadband networks to deliver broadcast TV and radio services;
    • The ability of consumers to manage their own access to fixed broadband content through improved media literacy and content filtering tools;
    • The monetisation of fixed broadband content using digital rights management whilst enabling its flexible use by consumers;
    • The increasing use of WiFi as the last connection to consumer devices and its effect on the overall consumer experience of using fixed broadband services;
    • The measurement of fixed broadband performance which better reflects the actual consumer experience of using fixed broadband services;
    • Consumer privacy and its interrelationship with how fixed broadband connectivity is provided.

    The successful candidate will have a range of responsibilities including:

    • Providing thought leadership and communicating effectively across Ofcom on the likely impact of emerging technical innovation in the fixed broadband and telephony sector;
    • Leading policy projects aimed to delivering better outcomes for citizens and consumers. These are likely to have a significant technical component, and to require input from other specialists including economists and lawyers;
    • Maintaining an ongoing awareness and understanding of current and emerging fixed broadband technologies, including: ongoing training, industry liaison and identifying, commissioning and managing specific external technical research projects;
    • Supporting the ongoing career development and training of other technologists across Ofcom on fixed broadband and telephony services;
    • Drafting and presenting clear concise papers for senior internal and external non technical audiences; and
    • Building and maintaining strong and effective stakeholder relationships with colleagues in other Ofcom teams and groups, as well as external organisations.

     

    Essential Skills / Experience

    You will require:

    • A comprehensive understanding of the technical design and delivery of fixed broadband and telephony services, including how the technical architecture and operation of fixed networks affects their delivery;
    • A good understanding of current and emerging technologies related to fixed broadband services and their delivery including; traffic management, software defined networks, multicasting, content delivery networks, faster optical fibre connections etc.
    • A good understanding of the factors impacting on the quality of service and reliability of fixed broadband delivered services.
    • Excellent communication and presentational skills, including the ability to explain complex issues and policy options with clarity to non-specialists,
    • Clear and accurate drafting skills with the ability to produce documents to a standard suitable for publication;
    • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills, highly numerate with proven data analysis skills;
    • Evidence of the ability to build strong and effective project teams, involving technical and non-technical specialists, both across the organisation and externally;
    • The ability to analyse complex technical issues and data, and present the results in accessible and creative ways;
    • Demonstrable evidence of managing successful policy projects.

    Desirable Skills / Experience

     You will ideally have:

    • Knowledge of the regulatory environment
    • Worked in an online service provider, communications provider, or a technology based consultancy for a number of years.

    Qualifications

    The successful candidate is likely to have an engineering, computer science, mathematics or similar degree and to possess relevant professional qualifications.

    Further Information

    Ofcom offers competitive salaries plus pensions and flexible benefits package. If you would like to apply, write stating your suitability for the role, current salary and enclose a CV to applications@ofcom.org.uk or by post to:

     

     The HR Department, Ofcom, Riverside House, 2a Southwark Bridge Road, London SE1 9HA

     

    Ofcom is an equal opportunities employer. It wishes to reflect the diversity of contemporary UK society and is therefore actively seeking to recruit colleagues from all cultural and ethnic backgrounds as well as those who have a disability.

     

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