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Occupation Details

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Secretary / Administrative Assistant - EU

Job Zone

Education
These occupations usually require a Leaving Certificate or equivalent.

Related Experience
Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, jobs requiring you to deal with the public would benefit from previous experience working directly with the public.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees.

Job Zone Examples
These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include sheet metal workers, forest fire fighters, customer service representatives, physical therapist aides, retail salespersons and tellers.

€31k >
Secretary / Administrative Assistant - EU
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€31 -
Related Information:
Monthly salaries in the EU Institutions range from around 2,600 per month for a newly recruited AST/SC 1 official to around 16,000 per month for a top level AD 16 official with over four years of seniority.

Each grade is broken up into five seniority steps with corresponding salary increases.

Basic salaries are adjusted annually in line with inflation and purchasing power in the EU countries.

As the name may suggest the basic monthly salary is just the starting point to remuneration associated with EU jobs as an employee may be entitled to allowances.

All payments are subject to relevant tax and charges.
Data Source(s):
Official Journal of the European Union & EPSO

Last Updated: April, 2015

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
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At a Glance... header image

Provides autonomous support to one or several people or units within an EU institution


Videos & Interviews header image

The Work header image

The administrative tasks of secretaries in the EU institutions vary according to the post. In general, a secretary provides autonomous support to one or several people or units within the EU institutions – shaping, transforming and distributing information.

The work typically includes:

  • Preparing files
  • Organising and coordinating the departments activities (meetings, official trips)
  • Document management (receipt, processing, follow-up, filing)
  • Preparing, processing, finalising and checking documents
  • Finding, compiling and disseminating information.

In translation departments, the work may also involve:

  • Receiving, managing and processing translation requests, in particular preparing, processing and finalising documents
  • Feeding and updating translation memories
  • Typing, page layout and formatting work.

Contract staff may also be employed to carry out secretarial duties.

Assistants (AST) usually work in supporting roles and are crucial for the internal management of the institutions.


Personal Qualitiesheader image

The EU institutions are looking for candidates who are talented, motivated, and highly qualified in their field, and who have the following competencies in particular:

  • Analysis and problem solving - Ability to identify the critical facts in complex issues and develop creative and practical solutions
  • Communication – Communicate clearly and precisely both orally and in writing
  • Delivering quality and results – Take personal responsibility and initiative for delivering work to a high standard of quality within set procedures
  • Learning and development – Develop and improve personal skills and knowledge of the organisation and its environment
  • Prioritising and organising – Prioritise the most important tasks, work flexibly, and organise own workload efficiently
  • Resilience – Remain effective under a heavy workload, handle organisational frustrations positively, and adapt to a changing work environment
  • Working with others - Work cooperatively with others in teams and across organisational boundaries and respect differences between people

An additional requirement for posts in the AD career bracket (administrators) is:
• Leadership – Manage, develop and motivate people to achieve results


Entry Routesheader image

EU Secretary / Administrative Assistants must have:

  • A good command of at least 2 European languages (one of which must be English, French or German)
  • either
    - post-secondary secretarial qualification,
  • or
    - secondary education and at least 3 years' professional experience as a secretary

Requirements for contract staff may be different.

An assistant career in the EU covers grades AST 1 to AST 11.

New staff usually enter at grades AST 1 or AST 3.

Last Updated: July, 2014


Related Occupationsheader image

Contactsheader image

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Organisation: Public Appointments Service
Address: Chapter House, 26/30 Abbey Street Upper, Dublin 1
Tel: (01) 858 7400 or Locall: 1890 44 9999
Email: Click here
Url Click here

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Organisation: EU Careers - European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO)
Address: Candidate Contact Service, Office C-80 00/40, B1049 Brussels
Tel: +32 (0) 2 299 3131
Email: Click here
Url Click here

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Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...


...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Government, Politics & EU
Clerical & Administration
History, Culture & Languages

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