Plant Records Officer

JOB DESCRIPTION: Plant Records officer

Overall Objective: To keep Plant Conservation records up to date, supporting the Plant Conservation team. Provide support and training to users of Persephone, our plant records system. Support volunteers working with plant records.

Responsible For: Keeping databases up to date. Answering user queries, training and setting up new users, managing the digitisation of physical records.                   

Overview of Role

The role will sit within the conservation team, and work with our database development team to support good plant record keeping within the charity. It will involve providing support to the existing users of our Plant Records system, Persephone and encouraging take-up and training for new users. The Plant Records officer will also be responsible for digitisation of our paper records, currently being done by a volunteer.

Place of work: Based at our office at the edge of RHS Wisley. Hybrid working considered.

Hours: Full time or 4 days (30 hours) a week. Salary: (full time equivelant £22,500- £25,500)

Closing date: Friday 5th Jan 2024


The Plant Records officer is responsible for:

 Supporting existing users of the Persephone plant records system, assisting with online or in person training sessions, answering queries as they arise

  • Setting up and training new users, including importing and checking any existing plant records. Adding more collection records to the database.
  • Manage the ongoing records generated by our conservation schemes as required.
  • Supervising volunteers who help with digital plant records, plus recruiting and training more. Assisting in-office volunteers in the digitisation of paper records
  • Identifying improvements to systems and processes and working on solutions with staff and the database development team
  • Liaising with the Conservation Team, collection holders, collection coordinators, staff and the database development team as needed to ensure accurate plant records.
  • Set up a volunteer mentor network to assist with queries from Plant Heritage members wanting support with Persephone
  • Assisting with the production of the annual Directory of National Plant Collections
  • Undertaking tasks to support the Plant Conservation team, as required.

 PERSON SPECIFICATION  - Plant Records officer






Experience with plant records, including familiarity with plant nomenclature



Experience with managing volunteers



Experience using spreadsheets or databases




Graduate or equivalent in a relevant field




Sound understanding of botanical plant names and the importance of good plant records



Working knowledge of IT systems including experience using databases, Excel, Word and virtual meeting platforms  



Volunteer management – matching skills with opportunities, keeping volunteers engaged and informed



Understanding of the purpose and operation of the National Collections scheme




Excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to build effective working relationships with a wide range of people



Attention to detail and able to produce a consistently high standard of accuracy in written work and record keeping



Excellent communication skills



Personal Attributes

Excellent organisation and team building skills.



A flexible approach to work in order to adapt to changing priorities



Passionate about volunteer work and plant conservation



Aligned with the aims and objectives of Plant Heritage





eg: plant genus, common name, county, collection holder name.