Research Technician

Rockville , MD
Jul 28, 2021
Aug 03, 2021
Full Time
Westat is an employee-owned corporation providing research services to agencies of the U.S. Government, as well as businesses, foundations, and state and local governments. Westat's research, technical, and administrative staff of more than 2,000 is located at our headquarters in Rockville, Maryland, near Washington, DC.

Job Summary:
Westat is seeking a full-time junior Research Technician to work in our Rockville office. This person will support human factors researchers by building, using, and maintaining equipment in studies of driver behavior, advanced vehicle technology and safety, consumer product safety, and travel behavior. Successful candidates will be expected to serve primarily as a research engineer/technician.

Job Responsibilities: 
•    Working with instrumented vehicles, driving simulators, video and data recording.
•    A wide variety of engineering and technical tasks for example building data collection equipment, using and troubleshooting instruments, assessing preliminary data and interacting with research participants. 
•    Interact with staff and study participants, and effectively communicating with local and remote staff.
•    Documenting work and communicating instrumentation design and proper use. 

Basic Qualifications:
•    A Bachelor's degree, preferably in engineering or technical field and/or relevant experience designing, tinkering, or inventing.

Preferred Qualifications:
•    Extensive experience and/or education in the development of hardware and software solutions in a professional environment for data acquisition and/or display and control applications.
•    Familiarity with robotics, drones, remote control, automation, or other advanced technologies.
•    Experience in preparing reports and/or research proposal materials. 
•    Experience and/or education in automotive repair, maintenance, or modification.
•    Experience and/or education in human factors engineering or psychology research.
•    Motorcycle, aviation, marine, and/or CDL certification to support research in those areas.
•    Experience with basic programming of computers, microcontrollers, and/or data management tools (e.g., Android, Python, R, Arduino, C++, etc.)
•    Experience with driving simulation design, programming, and/or data management.
•    Familiarity with 3D design and printing of prototype mounts, enclosures, etc.
•    Familiarity with QC procedures suitable for various data types, sources, and hardware platforms.

Minimum Qualifications: 
•    Willingness to work regularly at the Rockville facility with flexibility to occasionally travel for assignments. 
•    Possess your own vehicle to travel between Westat's offices and local field assignments. 
•    Basic understanding and skills in mechanical and electronic technology and engineering related to processors, circuits, sensors, connectivity, power, mounting, safety, and security. 
•    Experience with hobbyist or professional-level system design and development that demonstrates an ability to develop specialized data collection and/or display & control systems.
•    Basic understanding of video recording equipment, protocols, formats, connectivity, storage, lenses, and operation.
•    Flexibility to occasionally work on evenings or weekends as unusual project demands arise.
•    Willingness and ability to act as the technical hands-on, local eyes, tour guide and interpreter for team staff. 

Candidates must be client-focused, detail-oriented, demonstrate strong written and oral communication, and possess effective time management and organizational skills.  Candidates must also be capable of creative problem-solving, taking initiative, effectively manage multiple tasks simultaneously, and work well in a fast-paced team environment. 

Westat offers a well-rounded and comprehensive benefits program focused on wellness and work/life balance. Eligible employees may participate in:
  • Employee Stock Ownership Plan
  • 401(k) Retirement Plan
  • Paid Parental Leave
  • Vacation Leave
  • Sick Leave
  • Holiday Leave
  • Professional Development
  • Health Advocate
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Travel Accident Insurance
  • Medical Insurance
  • Dental Insurance
  • Vision Insurance
  • Short Term Disability Insurance
  • Long Term Disability Insurance
  • Life and AD&D Insurance
  • Critical Illness Insurance
  • Supplemental Life Insurance
  • Flexible Spending Account
  • Health Savings Account

Westat is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, veteran status, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, citizenship status, genetic information, gender identity or expression, or any other protected status under applicable law.

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