In Summary - Assistant - EU
Assistants in the EU work in supporting roles and are crucial for the internal management of the EU institutions.
Assistant - EUs typically work in the following Career Sectors:
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The Work - Assistant - EU
Assistants in the EU are generally employed in an executive and technical role (administrative, financial, communication, research, policy development and implementation etc.).
Assistants play an important role in the internal management of the EU Institutions, notably in:
- Budgetary and financial affairs
- Personnel work
- Document management and
- Scientific laboratory work
Interests - Assistant - EU
This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:
Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their most productive under supervisors who give clear guidelines and while performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.
They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.
Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
The Linguistic's interests are usually focused on ideas and information exchange. They tend to like reading a lot, and enjoy discussion about what has been said. Some will want to write about their own ideas and may follow a path towards journalism, story writing or editing. Others will develop skills in other languages, perhaps finding work as a translator or interpreter. Most Linguistic types will enjoy the opportunity to teach or instruct people in a topic they are interested in.
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 Requirements - Assistant - EU
School leavers can begin a career within the EU through Assistant (AST) or Secretarial (SC) roles for which you don’t need a degree to compete.
An assistant career in the EU covers grades AST 1 to AST 11.
- New staff usually enter at grades AST 1 or AST 3.
- AST 1 candidates must have completed secondary education and have previous relevant experience, or have a relevant vocational qualification.
- AST 3 candidates should have completed secondary education, a relevant vocational qualification and/or several years' relevant experience.
So in general, to apply for an Assistant competition, you must have completed (at least) secondary school.
There are also a limited number of 'traineeships' (Stagiaires) available.
As a graduate, you will typically apply for Administrator (AD) profiles. As an official you can find yourself playing a key role in the EU’s processes with a high degree of responsibility from an early stage in your career.
The selection procedures for permanent positions with the EU are organised as ‘open competitions’. The most relevant competition for graduates is launched every March, with profiles varying from year to year. An open competition includes tests and assessment exercises designed to measure your professional skills and a number of core competencies. In view of the very large number of applicants, this is the fairest and most transparent selection procedure.
|See: EPSO - European Personnel Selection Office - EU Career profiles - Support Staff
EU competitions are published on www.eu-careers.eu and announced by a competition notice, which provides full details of the profile, the eligibility criteria and the selection procedure. The format of the competitions varies depending on the profile being sought.
In order to be considered for the selection process, you will first need to meet the eligibility criteria (qualifications, professional experience, etc.) of a given competition, as published in the Official Journal or EPSO website.
Click here for examples of qualifications required.
Last Updated: December, 2016
Pay & Salary - Assistant - EU
Salary Range (thousands per year)* 31k - k
Monthly salaries in the European Commission range from around 2,300 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.
Grade: Basic monthly salary
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.
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.
Labour Market Updates - Assistant - EU
Useful Contacts - Assistant - EU
Public Appointments Service
EU Careers - European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO)
European Movement Ireland
European Parliament Information Office in Ireland