«Frequently Asked Questions This document is designed to be a reference for all applicants and potentially ...»
at the European Food
Frequently Asked Questions
This document is designed to be a reference for all applicants and potentially
interested aspirants for a career within the European Food Safety Authority.
It provides answers to the most frequently asked questions received by the
European Food Safety Authority on recruitment process and employment related
We recommend that you read this document carefully and in case your answer cannot be found here, write to us at email@example.com and we would be happy to deal with your query.
Disclaimer: The information provided herein is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended and should not be considered as legally binding. The European Food Safety Authority reserves the right to modify the information contained here at any time without prior notice.
INTRODUCTIONWho is EFSA?
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is the keystone of European Union (EU) risk assessment regarding food and feed safety. In close collaboration with national authorities and in open consultation with its stakeholders, EFSA provides independent scientific advice and clear communication on existing and emerging risks.
EFSA is an independent European agency funded by the EU budget that operates separately from the European Commission, European Parliament and EU Member States.
It was set up in January 2002, following a series of food crises in the late 1990s, as an independent source of scientific advice and communication on risks associated with the food chain.
The European Food Safety Authority is located in Via Carlo Magno 1A, 43126, Parma, Italy.
How many people work at EFSA?
EFSA currently employs around 450 staff members and works alongside over 1500 external experts.
What is the working language of EFSA?
The working language in EFSA is English (ref. EFSA Executive Director’s Decision concerning the linguistic regime of EFSA).
Candidates applying for posts at EFSA must have an excellent command of oral and written English and a satisfactory knowledge of another official language of the European Union to the extent necessary for the performance of the duties for the job profile - Staff Regulations and Conditions of Employment of Other Servants (SR and CEOS).
ACQUISITION OF BEST TALENTTo achieve its mission in ensuring food safety in Europe EFSA relies on its talent community and is constantly searching for a passionate and committed workforce.
Which are the possible employment opportunities?
EFSA launches recruitment procedures for Temporary Agents and Contract Agents through the announcement of vacant posts on EFSA Careers pages at careers.efsa.europa.eu. The vacancy notice of the selection procedure provides information on the job requirements and the conditions of employment.
EFSA may also recruit Officials and Contract Agents from the European Personnel Selection Office - EPSO's reserve lists.
The working and contractual conditions of EFSA staff are based on the SR and CEOS.
How can I apply for a position at EFSA?
Vacancy notices at EFSA are regularly published on Careers.efsa.europa.eu Candidates are requested to submit their application by means of the EFSA online application tool found on the careers pages.
The online application tool is the only acceptable means of submitting job applications and allows candidates to enter their application and update it until the deadline. Applications sent via email or post are not accepted.
How long are the vacancies open for applications?
Generally vacancies are online for one month during which candidates can submit their applications (SR, Annex III, Art. 1). Exceptionally, this period may be extended.
The exact deadline to apply for a job is indicated in each vacancy.
May I submit an unsolicited/spontaneous application?
EFSA does not consider unsolicited/spontaneous applications whether received by post, e-mail or fax. Only applications for published vacancies can be taken into consideration.
EFSA will publish all vacancies on its careers pages Careers.efsa.europa.eu.
Unsolicited/spontaneous applications will not receive any response.
Are all applications and applicants for a position at EFSA treated in the same way?
EFSA applies a policy of equal opportunities and accepts applications without bias on the grounds of gender, race, colour, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability or sexual orientation.
www.efsa.europa.eu What does a recruitment procedure consist of?
The selection procedure and the conditions of recruitment will be clearly set out in all EFSA’s vacancy notices (SR, Annex III, Art. 1) Each application will be screened for compliance with the vacancy notice (e.g.
concerning the required educational qualifications, years of work experience etc.).
Any application which does not meet the requirements specified in a vacancy notice (i.e. incomplete applications or those which do not meet the detailed criteria listed under the ‘eligibility criteria’) will be rejected.
Following evaluation of the eligible applications, on the basis of the specific competences and skills required for the post, the best-qualified applicants will be called for an interview and a written test. Further to the assessment phase, a reserve list may be established.
The Executive Director takes the final decision to offer the job to a selected candidate from the reserve list established by the selection board.
Before confirming employment at EFSA, candidates will have to undergo a preemployment medical visit in order to attest that they are physically fit to perform the duties linked to the post.
How long does a recruitment procedure last?
As an average estimation only, a recruitment procedure for a given vacancy may take around six months from the date on which a position is first advertised to the final offer being made.
Can I apply for two vacancies at the same time?
Vacancies advertised by EFSA are independent from each other and if not indicated otherwise, candidates are welcome to apply to any of them should they satisfy the eligibility criteria.
I am a national of a country that is not a Member State of the EU. Am I eligible to apply for a vacancy advertised by EFSA?
In order to apply for a position at EFSA it is mandatory to be a citizen of a Member State of the EU, Iceland or Norway as stated in the vacancies. Applicants with nationalities other than those indicated in the vacancies will be considered as not eligible.
I have a degree from a country that is not a Member State of the EU. Am I eligible to apply for a vacancy advertised by EFSA?
Candidates that posses university diplomas and degrees awarded in a country that is not a Member State of the EU, Iceland or Norway should have the degree officially recognized in one of the Member States of the EU, Iceland or Norway in order to be eligible to apply for a position which requires such degree.
www.efsa.europa.eu My degree/diploma will not be awarded until after the closing date for applications. May I apply?
To be eligible to apply, you must have gained the minimum entry qualifications required in the vacancy notice by the closing date. Qualifications gained after that date cannot be taken into consideration.
I do not have the required number of years of professional experience at the closing date for the online applications however, I will have them soon after. May I apply?
You must meet all the eligibility requirements by the closing date for submission of applications. Professional experience acquired after this date cannot be taken into account and therefore the application will be considered as not eligible.
What language should I use in my application for a post at EFSA?
Applicants may use any of the official languages of the European Union when applying for a post advertised by EFSA. However, in order to speed up the selection process and to reduce the amount of translations needed, applicants are invited to use English, which is the working language of EFSA.
Can I change the information I inserted in my application after I submitted it?
Yes you can modify your application, by entering you candidate account and click on Edit application. You will be able at all times to revisit your application as well as the job description of the position you applied for.
How can I check the status of my application?
EFSA publishes regularly the status of recruitment procedures on its website. No additional information can be given to candidates until the selection procedure has been concluded.
Candidates are invited to regularly check the website for any updates on the status of procedures by clicking here.
Will I be notified if my application is unsuccessful?
Candidates that have been shortlisted for an interview will receive an invitation by email, whereas those candidates that are not selected for interviews will be notified via email of the outcome once the procedure has been concluded.
How is the personal information I enter in my application being processed?
The personal information EFSA requests from candidates will be processed in line with Regulation (EC) N° 45/2001 of the European Parliament and of the Council of www.efsa.europa.eu 18 December 2000 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data.
For more information on this please click here.
When may I expect to receive an invitation for an interview?
The time taken to invite applicants for an interview depends on the number of applications received for a particular vacancy notice. Applicants short-listed for an interview will be informed once all applications have been evaluated. It may take around eight weeks from the closing date of the vacancy notice before the invitations for interviews can be sent out.
I am invited for an interview. How can I reach EFSA and where can I stay?
In order to facilitate your travel arrangements, please click here to get information about finding accommodation. For indications to Parma, please click here.
What shall I study for the written test and interview?
As a recommendation you should use the vacancy notice for your preparation.
The written tests are designed to assess some of the competencies indicated in the vacancy notice under the essential and advantageous criteria.
The interviews aim to give an opportunity to bring forward the range of competencies and skills for the position you have applied to. The interviews are being held in English. If your mother tongue is English, knowledge of the second EU language that you indicated in your application will be assessed during the interview.
How long will the test and interview last?
The written tests usually take between 45 minutes to 2 hours depending on the job specificity.
The interviews last on average 45 minutes depending on the vacancy notice applied for and the complexity of the questions.
Will my travel expenses be reimbursed if I am invited for an interview?
All candidates who attend an interview and have their place of residence/departure more than 200 km distance from Parma, are eligible to receive a contribution to their travel and subsistence expenses.
Travel expenses are to be paid by the candidate and afterwards, showing the proof or travelling, reimbursed by EFSA. The contribution, in a lump sum, shall be processed according to the rules laid down by EFSA which can be consulted on EFSA’s website by clicking here.
www.efsa.europa.eu The accommodation costs have to be considered as covered by the contribution mentioned above. Additional accommodation expenses will only be reimbursed if the candidate is invited to attend an interview that lasts more than one day.
I am on an EFSA reserve list. When shall I expect an offer of employment?
Inclusion on the reserve list does not guarantee a job offer. As long as the reserve list remains valid, EFSA may offer a position to a successful candidate who best matches the specific needs of EFSA. Candidates’ profiles will be considered with all due care each time a position for which they are qualified becomes available. You can check the status concerning the validity of existing reserve lists on EFSA’s website by clicking here.
Is it possible to lodge an appeal against the decision of the Selection Board?
If a candidate considers that s/he has been adversely affected by a particular
decision, s/he can:
lodge a complaint under Article 90(2) of the SR at the following address: The Executive Director EFSA
Selection procedure Ref.:
Via Carlo Magno, 1/A I-43126 PARMA The complaint must be lodged within three months. The time limit for initiating this type of procedure (see SR as modified by Council Regulation No 723/2004 of 22 March – http://eur-lex.europa.eu) starts running from the time the candidate is notified of the act adversely affecting him/her.
submit a judicial appeal under Article 270 of the TFEU and Article 91 of the SR to the: European Union Civil Service Tribunal Boulevard Konrad Adenauer Luxembourg 2925
LUXEMBOURGFor details of how to submit an appeal, please consult the website of the European Union Civil Service Tribunal: http://curia.europa.eu/jcms/jcms/Jo16308/.
The time limits for initiating this procedure (see SR as amended by Council Regulation (EC) No 723/2004 of 22 March 2004, published in Official Journal of the European Union L 124 of 27 April 2004 — http://eur-lex.europa.eu) start to run from the time you become aware of the act allegedly prejudicing your interests.
make a complaint to the European Ombudsman: