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Programs and Planning Specialist

Date: Jan 11, 2023

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 9688 


The Physical Sciences Directorate (PSD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is seeking a Programs and Planning Specialist in the Directorate (PSD) Office to manage and direct the PSD proposal process from the initial proposal announcement through to the final submission for a variety of sponsors and provide specialized programmatic support.  PSD is home to highly integrated basic and applied research programs whose research encompasses foundational science in chemistry, materials science, nanoscience, and physics.  PSD is responsible for several Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science programs at ORNL including Basic Energy Sciences (BES), Nuclear Physics (NP), and High Energy Physics (HEP).  In addition, research in PSD involves many other programs including Fossil Energy, Nuclear Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Office of Electricity, and Strategic Partnerships Programs with industry, other government agencies and universities.


The successful candidate will work closely with PSD’s chief operating officer, associate laboratory director, communications coordinator, division directors, program managers, and researchers, providing mission support services in the areas of proposal preparation and submission, planning, and internal management for BES, NP, and HEP programs. This position will also assist in PSD business activities including the preparation of the annual Lab Plan, Lab Agenda, PSD Business Plan, and quarterly S&T reporting.  The candidate will work with BES on the publication of workshop and roundtable reports.  The ideal candidate will be a team player who can achieve work objectives independently, accurately, and successfully, requiring minimal follow-up.  Familiarity with terminology of the technical community and research fields will allow the candidate to be intuitive and proactive in capturing ideas. The ideal candidate should be highly organized, detail oriented, and have experience and background in proposal preparation and in managing the production of various types of documents, reports, and libraries. Strong time management and communication skills are also essential attributes for this position.


Major Duties/Responsibilities:

  • Works with PSD program managers and with researchers across ORNL to produce compliant, single and multiple principal investigator, as well as multi-institutional, peer-reviewed, scientific proposals for BES (e.g., Materials Sciences and Engineering, Chemical Sciences, Geosciences, and Biosciences, and Nanoscience), NP and HEP.
  • Works with all aspects of proposal management from proposal announcement to submission into the Office of Science’s Portfolio Analysis and Management System (PAMS) or
  • Ensures compliant proposals are submitted on time using established and recognized proposal methods; manages the PSD R&D proposal process across the Laboratory including mentoring administrative staff in proposal management and preparation.
  • Manages the preparation and timely delivery of programmatic materials directly funded by DOE. These deliverables consist of programmatic review documents, workshop brochures, reports, and factual documents in particular for BES.
  • Assists with and develops content for the ORNL/PSD business activities including PSD Business Plan, Performance Evaluation and Measurement Plan (PEMP) reports and presentations; Lab Plan, and the ORNL Office of Science Annual Report. 
  • Develops materials for the PSD Science Advisory Committee meetings.


Basic Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Management, Science Communication, or other relevant degree.
  • At least three years of experience producing science-related products such as reports or proposals or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Specialized skills, knowledge, and expertise in proposal management to deliver compliant and winning technical proposals to the sponsors.
  • Proven ability to manage complex projects.


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Previous experience at a scientific organization, national laboratory or other research institution.
  • Ability to prioritize and meet deadlines; strong interpersonal skills; ability to work both independently and with all levels of researchers and staff in a team-based environment; and aptitude for solving problems and developing and implementing solutions.
  • Firm grasp of standard business productivity software (e.g., Microsoft Office, especially Word, Excel and PowerPoint; Adobe Acrobat).
  • Ability to work with a professional scientific and engineering staff on a wide variety of complex proposals and reports.
  • Advanced knowledge of scientific organization, national laboratory or other research institution business lines and sponsor requirements.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment.


This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply.  UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.

Nearest Major Market: Knoxville