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«Frequently Asked Questions This document is designed to be a reference for all applicants and potentially ...»

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http://www.ombudsman.europa.eu Please note that complaints made to the Ombudsman have no suspensive effect on the period laid down in Articles 90(2) and 91 of the SR for lodging complaints or for submitting appeals to the Civil Service Tribunal under Article 236 of the Treaty establishing the European Community. Please note also that, under Article 2(4) of the general conditions governing the performance of the Ombudsman's duties, any complaint lodged with the Ombudsman must be preceded by the appropriate administrative approaches to the institutions and bodies concerned.

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What is a Temporary Agent?

Information concerning temporary staff within the meaning of Article 2 of the CEOS

can be found on the website of the European Commission at:

http://ec.europa.eu/civilservice/job/temp/indexen.htm Temporary Agent contracts are generally offered for five years with the possibility of renewal for another definite period. Any further renewal would be for an indefinite period.

Temporary Agent posts are classified according to the nature and importance of the

duties in:

 Administrators' function group (AD): comprises twelve grades from AD 5 to AD 16 corresponding to technical, administrative, advisory, linguistic and scientific duties;

 Assistants' function group (AST): comprises eleven grades from AST 1 to AST 11 corresponding to administrative, technical and clerical duties.

Please note that EFSA has adopted and is implementing updated rules for the engagement of Temporary Agent Posts.

What is a Contract Agent?

Information concerning contract agents as contract staff members under the provisions of title IV, Article 80 of the CEOS can be found on the website of the

European Commission's Directorate General of Personnel and Administration at:

http://ec.europa.eu/civilservice/job/contract/indexen.htm Contract Agent positions are classified in four function groups corresponding to the

duties and responsibilities involved:

 Function group IV: comprises six grades corresponding to administrative, advisory, linguistic and equivalent technical tasks;

 Function group III: comprises five grades corresponding to administrative tasks, drafting, accountancy and other equivalent technical tasks;

 Function group II: comprises four grades corresponding to clerical and secretarial tasks, office management and other equivalent tasks;

 Function group I: comprises three grades corresponding to manual and administrative support service tasks.

According to Article 85 of the CEOS, contracts can be offered for a fixed period of at least three months and not more than five years. EFSA generally offers contracts for five years with the possibility of renewal for another definite period. Any further renewal would be for an indefinite period.

Where can I find more information related to grades and salary of EFSA staff?

For more information regarding grades and salary please click here.

www.efsa.europa.eu Please also find below a recap table of basic salary for Temporary and Contract


Basic salary table for Temporary Agents recruited at EFSA (AST/AD)

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www.efsa.europa.eu What benefits does EFSA offer?

In addition to the basic salary, EFSA staff may receive various benefits depending on their personal circumstances.

The benefits package contains family allowances for spouse and dependent children, worldwide medical insurance cover for staff members and dependents, accident insurance for staff members, flexible working hours, parental and family leave, finalsalary pension scheme, work-life balance policy and well-being initiatives, access to the European school for parents who wish their children to benefit from an education at European level near their working environment.

The final salary is calculated by adding the relevant allowances and by deducting social security contributions (health and accident insurance, pension rights, unemployment) and other taxes.

Salaries and allowances paid by EFSA staff are exempt from any national taxation in all EU Member States, but are subject to a European tax (deducted at source) for the benefit of the European Communities.

The main benefits, deductions and contributions can be consulted in the SR and CEOS.



Wellbeing is a dynamic state in which the individual is able to develop their potential, work productively and creatively, build strong and positive relationships with others and contribute to their community.

How is EFSA taking care of employees’ wellbeing?

Staff wellbeing is an increasingly relevant and important consideration in a modern workplace.

Wellbeing at its simplest level is about personal happiness – feeling good and leading a balanced and healthy lifestyle. This means not allowing work to undermine the basic purposes and needs in our lives and by extension those of our families and loved ones.

In this respect wellbeing is a hugely significant aspect of our work and careers.

Wellbeing is a key area of engagement for EFSA. In particular, we promote and encourage a culture oriented to healthier lifestyles, boosting your overall mental and physical wellbeing. In this context, we bring together a comprehensive range of resources on health and wellbeing in the workplace, highlighting their relevance to our employees.

What about life-work balance at EFSA?

EFSA enables staff members to reconcile family and professional life by offering flexible work arrangements, part-time work and parental leave.

EFSA staff members are entitled to annual leave as well as EFSA holidays. On top of this entitlement, additional leave days are granted for age and distance from the place of origin. Special leave is granted for certain circumstances such as marriage, birth or adoption of a child, death of a close relative etc.

The Scuola per l’Europa located in Parma was set for all parents who wish their children to benefit from an education at European level near their working environment. The Scuola per L’Europa in Parma covers from nursery to baccalaureate.



EFSA makes every effort to develop the competences of its staff in order to actively and significantly contribute to the achievement of EFSA’s goals as well as to enhance their career prospects.

Are there any training and development opportunities at EFSA?

To provide EFSA staff and experts with an exceptional learning offer and experience, a centre of knowledge for Risk Assessment through the EFSA Academy was created, where knowledge and experiences can be shared.

In order to develop employees’ professional skills and performance and to better contribute to EFSA’s mission, learning and development at EFSA includes the full development spectrum from formal to informal learning of both general and technical


 Instructor-led face-to-face training through EFSA’s procured training providers;

 Web-based training;

 Group learning via communities of practice;

 Self-managed learning via e-learning, reading and further education;

 On the job learning such as demonstration and observation, coaching and mentoring;

 Role change, secondments, transfers, exchange with universities and attendance to conferences.

Is there a career and performance appraisal system at EFSA?

Temporary, Contract Agents and Seconded National Experts at EFSA are subject to an annual performance appraisal system called ‘Performance Dialogue’.

The Performance Dialogue is a key moment of the year where line managers and staff build new opportunities for professional growth together and set priorities of the year through an open and constructive dialogue. The Performance Dialogue is a moment of sound reflection and exchange between both actors. In general terms, the purpose of the Performance Dialogue is to bring alignment and consistency between EFSA’s long, medium and short-term objectives and the motivations and aspirations of staff members – if staff members are continuously developing their skills and abilities, so is EFSA.

Linked to the performance appraisal dialogue is a merit-based promotion policy applied on an annual basis.

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What is a Seconded National Expert (SNE)?

Seconded National Experts are seconded to EFSA while remaining in the service of their national employer. Secondment is not equivalent to employment at EFSA, nor does it lead to employment by the Authority.

SNEs receive from the Authority a daily subsistence allowance per calendar day as well as a monthly travel allowance for the duration of their secondment. Candidates for an SNE post must be supported by their national authorities or governments.

The duration of a secondment to EFSA is limited to a maximum of four years. The place of secondment is Parma.

For further information on this please click here.

Any further enquiries on this subject should be sent to the e-mail address:

SNE@efsa.europa.eu What is a National Expert in Professional Training (NEPT)?

National experts in professional training are staff from the public administrations of EU Member States or, depending on the places available, of countries with which the Council has decided to open accession negotiations and which have concluded a specific agreement with EFSA on staff secondments, or from public intergovernmental organisations (‘IGOs’ such as the United Nations) or from EFTA Member States (Norway, Switzerland, Iceland and Liechtenstein).

The purpose of such in-service professional traineeship is:

 To give NEPT experience of the European working methods and European Food Safety Risk Assessment;

 To enable NEPT to develop experience and understanding of the day-to-day work of EFSA;

 To enhance and harmonize the knowledge of EFSA’s Risk Assessment in the Member states;

 To strengthen the scientific cooperation between EFSA and its partners.

The in-service professional traineeship shall last up to 5 months maximum and shall take place under the supervision of a ‘Tutor’. The NEPT shall be posted in one of the three scientific Departments according to the areas indicated in the expression of interest form.

For further information on this please click here.

Any further enquiries on this subject should be sent to the e-mail address:

NEPTs@efsa.europa.eu www.efsa.europa.eu Are there any interim opportunities at EFSA?

The European Food Safety Authority is additionally assisted by external providers (e.g. recruiting agencies) for the short-term placement of interim staff. Interim staff is not directly employed by EFSA and is usually contracted by the recruiting agency while working at EFSA for a fixed amount of months. Interim positions are not published on EFSA website and are only available to respond to temporary specific needs of the agency. Interim staff usually works in a variety of roles depending on EFSA needs.


Are there any traineeship opportunities at EFSA?

Yes, a traineeship period spent at the European Food Safety Authority enables trainees to acquire practical experience by means of their work and to put into practice the knowledge they have acquired during their academic studies or professional careers in the areas of science, communication or administration.

EFSA launches every year a traineeships call in order to create a database of eligible candidates in order to select the best talents for traineeship openings.

How long is the traineeship?

The traineeship programme lasts a minimum of 6 and a maximum of 12 months.

Usually, it is for 12 months. The traineeship finishes automatically at the end of the given period and shall not be extended.

Is the EFSA traineeship paid?

Yes, trainees are awarded a monthly grant of €1,071.19. They are also entitled to reimbursement of the travel expenses upon arrival and departure. The amount to be reimbursed is calculated according to the distance between EFSA and the place of origin.

Are trainees insured?

EFSA does not cover sickness insurance and trainees must provide proof that they are covered either by the European Health Insurance Card (for nationals of the EU Member States) or a private sickness insurance scheme for the entire duration of the traineeship at the Authority.

During the traineeship, the trainees are insured against the risk of accidents according to the EFSA insurance policy.

I am a national of a country that is not a Member State of the EU. Am I eligible to apply for a traineeship advertised by EFSA?

Yes, EFSA is offering a few positions to non-EU university graduates. Therefore, your application is welcome.

www.efsa.europa.eu What is the annual leave entitlement?

Trainees are entitled to two (2) days leave per month. Thus, they are entitled to a total of 24 days for one year.

Is there an age limit for applying?

No, age is not an eligibility criterion. Thus, all candidates who fulfill the eligibility criteria (regardless of age) are welcome to apply for the traineeship programme.

When does the traineeship program start?

Starting dates of the traineeships can be from the 1st of July until the 15th of December.

What is the traineeship program/work like?

The content of the traineeship depends on the Unit/Team the trainees are assigned to according to their preference and qualifications. The work might be in the field of Plant Health, Food Ingredients, Pesticides, Emerging Risks, GMO, Communications, Human Resources, Legal Affairs, etc.

Where can I find more details about traineeships and conditions for admission?

The Traineeship Decision, which provides more information about traineeships, is available on our website at https://www.efsa.europa.eu/it/careers/youngprofessionals

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What are the eligibility criteria?

(A) Having a full university degree of at least three years by the closing date for applications;

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