National Physical Laboratory

National Physical Laboratory 2024 graduate opportunities

Company Company Profile

About us

We are the UK’s National Metrology Institute, part of the National Measurement System tasked with developing and maintaining the national primary measurement standards.

Owned by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, we operate as a Public Corporation in a partnering agreement with the University of Strathclyde and the University of Surrey. We work with academia, research establishments and industry.

Our role is to undertake excellent science and engineering to deliver extraordinary impact for the UK – our measurement capability underpins the UK’s prosperity and quality of life, while our expertise is crucial in accelerating research, development and testing for new products and processes.

As we complete our new £25million Advanced Quantum Metrology Laboratory (AQML), we’re incredibly excited about what the future holds for NPL. It’s a brilliant time to become part of our team.

Our values are the common thread that shapes the way we work with each other and our clients, how we celebrate success and how we go about achieving our mission to provide the measurement capability that underpins the UK’s prosperity and quality of life. They form part of the recruitment and selection process; you can expect that we will ask you competency-based questions in interviews, specifically linked to our values. We use them to shape many of the ways in which we interact, including how we provide feedback to each other, how we develop people and what we celebrate.

Creating impact from science and engineering

The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) is a world-leading centre of excellence that provides cutting-edge measurement science, engineering and technology to underpin prosperity and quality of life in the UK.

Our science helps save lives, protect the environment and enable citizens to feel safe and secure. For over a century, we have worked with industry to encourage innovation and translate scientific expertise into economic prosperity, skilled employment and improved quality of life.

In this digital age, our world-leading measurement science provides confidence in data and enables innovation and international trade to flourish. We develop the metrology required to ensure the timely and successful deployment of new technologies.

NPL as a working environment

Our success comes from attracting energetic and imaginative people who share our values. We are proud to be a world-class organisation doing exceptional science, and to have an atmosphere of support and collaboration. At every level, in every area of our business, we seek to nurture and respect our people. Together, we support each other to grow, succeed and enjoy work.

“The best thing about working at NPL is the opportunity to work on a broad range of projects of direct relevance to UK innovation and quality of life. Every day is different, solving a variety of challenges in world-class facilities”.

Natalie Belsey - Senior Research Scientist

Life at NPL

NPL is a unique place to work. Our culture mixes elements of academia, industry and commerce to create a working environment all of our own.

The total team numbers around 900 and growing. You’ll find scientists and engineers from all over the world in our labs – as well as a wide range of commercial and operational specialists. Across the organisation, there’s a very collegiate, co-operative feel to the way we work.

The sense of community extends to time outside work. We have a thriving sports and social club, with activities like yoga, cricket, boardgaming, football, tennis and mindfulness. NPL even has its own wine society and a choir.