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Journal Admin Assistant

  • Location:
    North West
  • Position:
  • Salary:
    £11.56 plus £1.40 holiday pay, £12.96 per hour total
  • Date Posted:
    10 Jan 2019
  • Advertising End Date:
    20 Jan 2019
  • Vacancy Type:
  • Reference:
Job Description

We are seeking a Journal Admin Assistant, for a temporary role supporting the New Phytologist and Plants, People, Planet journals.

Job Title:   Journal Admin Assistant
Working Pattern:   Monday-Friday 9:00-12:00, flexible working will be considered
Location:   Lancaster University
Dates of Work:   28th January 2019 - 15th March 2019
Rate of pay:   £11.56 plus £1.40 holiday pay, £12.96 per hour total
Main Duties:

1. Technical assessment of newly-submitted manuscripts: including, but not limited to: checking submissions are within scope of the journals, and in correct format with author details, etc. and all files viewable, using own initiative to resolve issues where possible, or referring to internal/external expert help when necessary.

2. The administration of peer review of papers submitted to New Phytologist and Plants, People, Planet. The submission and peer review of manuscripts is undertaken electronically via the online submission site ScholarOne Manuscripts. Using this database the Editorial Assistant will perform the day-to-day tasks of peer review, aiming to ensure the review process is prompt and rigorous, assisting reviewers in the delivery of high quality reports in a rapid timeframe (usu. two weeks). This will be achieved by:

  • Monitoring the review status of articles using ScholarOne, to ensure that manuscripts move through the process promptly and according to established guidelines. Using initiative and established procedure guidelines to progress submissions.
  • Prompting and reminding Editors to provide reviewer suggestions and providing brief details/updates sufficient for the Editor to make quick decisions and suggestions within timeframes and according to the guidelines outlined in the appropriate procedure documents.
  • Assisting the Editor and Peer Review Manager by suggesting potential referees from the Advisory Board, or by conducting online searches to determine suitably qualified individuals, using own initiative where possible, or with advice from colleagues as appropriate.
  • Contacting reviewers on behalf of Editors to determine whether they are able to provide reports on submitted papers.
  • Reminding overdue reviewers as appropriate, and according to established timeframes. Deciding on courses of action to ensure timely submission of reports. Difficult situations sometimes arise, each of which must be dealt with on their own merits and the Peer Review Manager or senior staff should be alerted/consulted as appropriate.
  • Checking reviewer reports submitted to ensure that they are complete, and meet the standards of the journal, including ensuring that the information posted in the correct sections, any attached files are viewable, etc.
  • Assist Reviewers in the submission of their reports, troubleshooting submission or software problems.
  • Closing the review process promptly upon receipt of all reports, following established procedures.
  • Assist the Peer Review manager with peer-review-related tasks, such as assigning manuscripts, tracking the progress of submitted manuscripts and providing cover for the Peer Review Manager during absences/vacations, etc.
  • Develop and maintain the database of contacts and key word information for authors and reviewers held on the ScholarOne Manuscripts database. Ensuring that the database is up-to-date and accurate, including administering ad-hoc changes and routine merging of duplicate entries in the database (a task carried out weekly) and routine checking/updating of address and key word details of reviewers (a task carried out monthly).

3. Filing of materials (mostly electronic, but some hardcopy) such that correspondence and details relating to past papers can be retrieved quickly.

4. To provide general administrative assistance to the Executive Editor as required to ensure the success of all New Phytologist Trust activities.  For example, collation of papers for annual editorial meetings, or annual symposia, as well as ad-hoc duties as appropriate.

Person Specification:

  • Data entry/data collection experience
  • Administrative experience
  • Strong IT skills
  • A scientific background may be helpful in this role, but is not essential
This is an exciting opportunity to assist with the production of a respected journal, don't miss out! 

Applications without a covering letter will not be considered. For help and advice on covering letters:

Help from Careers @ Lancaster

Advice on Cover Letters


Under the terms of this work, we endeavour to provide the advertised number of hours however, hours are not guaranteed and that work may cease if there is a fall in demand. 

Adverts that display a closing date should be treated as a guide. We reserve the right to close the vacancy once we have received sufficient applications, so we advise you to submit your application as early as possible to prevent disappointment.