Share this Job

Unit Specialist


Waltham, LEC, GB, LE14 4RS


We are looking for Unit Specialists to join our team!

£17,500 – £21,500 (shift allowance inclusive)

Waltham Centre for Pet Nutrition – Waltham on the Wolds, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire

About Us

WALTHAM is the fundamental science centre for Mars Petcare, a £multi-billion privately owned company with leading brands such as Pedigree®, Whiskas®, Kit E Kat® and Cesar®. Waltham focuses on the nutrition and wellbeing of dogs, cats, horses, birds and fish, and their benefits to humans. 


Would you like to start a career at Mars?

Working as a unit specialist, you will be responsible for ensuring that our animals are cared for in line with our Waltham Centre for Pet Nutrition (WPCN) standards. This high standard of care ensures that our animals are fit and fully prepared to participate in our research programme and for the effective generation and collection of data from research trials paving the way for Mars Petcare to produce world-class pet care products.

We are currently seeking four new unit specialists to join our busy and dedicated team. These positions are on a 7 day shift pattern and involve weekend working. All contracts will be 37.5 hours per week.

The role is both challenging and rewarding being at the forefront of research and pet care operations at WCPN.  The purpose of the Operation is to produce high quality innovative science data that is conducted in a caring way.  The Unit Specialist role is integral to delivering this by the provision of data from research trials and the delivery of trial support, including the individual care, development and maintenance of our pets. As part of the team, you will be responsible for all elements of pet care for the pets in their charge.  This will include the following: 

  • Delivery of training and habituation of pets
  • Accurate collection and recording of all relevant data
  • Weighing and recording bodyweights and reporting any changes to the relevant people
  • Delivering all pet care and husbandry on designated unit e.g. grooming
  • Monitoring and reporting pet health status, handling pets for veterinary examinations and procedures and administering and daily treatments and periodic vaccinations
  • Carrying out behavioural programmes for pets with special needs 


Who will be your Line Manager?

There are three Team Leaders in Unit Operations Team who have a breadth of experience adding up 23 years’ service at WALTHAM. They have a broad experience prior to joining Mars including Research in Microbiology, Companion Animal Research and Nutrition. As high engaged Leaders they are well equipped to help the successful candidate navigate themselves through the introduction to MARS’s unique culture. 


What are we looking for in our ideal candidate? 

Experience –

  • A passion for the care and wellbeing of cats or dogs is essential for the role, as is experience of working with cats or dogs either commercially or through voluntary work.

Qualifications and skills –  

  • A GSCE (or equivalent) at level C or above in Maths and English is essential. (Please note you may be asked to provide proof of qualifications).
  • Numeracy, attention to detail and computer literacy are also key to ensure the accuracy of data collection and data handling required of the role.
  • Though not essential, a relevant degree or animal based qualification would be desirable


Why is this role so great?  A current role holder tells us from her experience…

"I have been working at Mars as a Unit Specialist for nearly 2 years now and I still get excited about what we do here! I get to work closely with the animals ensuring their health and happiness, which is the best kind of therapy, alongside a diverse team that shares the same passion as myself. It is great to work with a company that really do put the animals first and value our hard work and commitment. Together we contribute towards ground-breaking research to help make A Better World for Pets... and that starts with us really." 


What to expect in the assessment process…

We are always looking for talented new associates to join our Unit Specialist team. We hold 4 assessment days throughout the year in February, May, August and November.

If you meet the essential role requirements you will be asked to complete an online aptitude test. If you successfully pass the online test then you will be invited to an assessment day. Here you will get to meet the Dog/Cat Unit Management Team, hear more about the role and have the opportunity to ask questions. In the morning we will be looking at assessing your functional skills in an animal behaviour and attention to detail test, which are essential for the role. There may also be a group exercise to take part in. Those that are successful in the morning will be asked to stay for lunch and taken forward for an interview in the afternoon.


Tell me more about Mars…

Mars Inc. is a family-owned company with worldwide annual sales of over £24billion. Since 1932 we’ve been producing iconic brands in the UK, including Uncle Ben’ s, Snickers and Dolmio, in addition to other globally admired products such as Galaxy, Mars Bar and Whiskas.  

Please note that the Waltham site is based in a remote location with no direct public transport links, therefore it is essential that you have your own means to travel to work.


At Mars we invest in people and really give them the freedom to fly.  So if we’ve just described you and your career aspirations, to apply, please click on the link below. 


Mars is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. If you need assistance or an accommodation during the application process because of a disability, it is available upon request. The company is pleased to provide such assistance, and no applicant will be penalized as a result of such a request.

Find similar jobs: