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We regularly advertise vacancies for typical central banking positions, such as macroeconomists, economist-statisticians, research analysts, payment systems experts, operations and back-office experts, risk analysts as well as securities settlement experts and banknotes production and counterfeit experts.
However, we also look for a wide variety of corporate service personnel, e.g. HR specialists, finance experts, auditors, legal counsels, translators and terminologists, lawyer-linguists, communication officers, procurement experts, IT experts and architects. All of these specialists require secretarial, administrative and support services, so we hire in these areas too.
The ECB Graduate Programme (GP) is aimed at highly talented recent graduates with a postgraduate degree, preferably a PhD, in one of a broad range of disciplines and a a keen interest in central banking.
The two-year programme gives participants a unique development opportunity and valuable on-the-job experience, as well as an insight into the ECB’s tasks and working methods from the perspectives of different functional areas. The participants also gain an overview of the policy-making processes of the ECB.
Participants are given two challenging one-year assignments each to be carried out in a different division of the ECB, allocated on the basis of their field of expertise and in line with the organisational needs of the Bank. They will contribute fully to the work of the divisions to which they are appointed. During the second year of the programme, they are also expected to write a project paper which will form the basis of their appraisal. GP participants benefit from a number of in-house as well as external training opportunities, such as area-specific technical training, writing skills, IT, personal and interpersonal skills, task and information-oriented skills and languages.
Participants in the programme are assigned a mentor (an experienced staff member) who will provide them with support, advice and guidance.
The successful completion of the programme by each participant will be assessed by a GP Committee.
The Graduate Programme is one way of starting a career at the ECB. However, we do not automatically offer contracts to successful participants at the end of the programme. Graduates who wish to start a career at the ECB have the possibility to apply for available vacancies advertised both internally and externally.
The ECB offers traineeship opportunities for students with at least a bachelor’s degree, including PhD students, or for recent graduates in areas such as economics, finance, statistics, business administration, law, human resources and translation.
These traineeships give students and job entrants an opportunity to put their learning into practice, gain an insight into the ECB’s activities and operations, and to contribute to the ECB’s mission. The tasks performed by trainees are supervised and depend on the unit they join. It can consist of research tasks, the preparation of draft reports, the compilation of statistical data, the execution of operational tasks and the participation in ad hoc studies.
Trainees registered in this programme are subject to the Rules governing the ECB traineeship programme ( download ). The overview below also outlines the conditions of admission, the supporting documentation, the selection process, the contract, the grant, and the possibilities regarding residence and reimbursement of travel.
As a candidate you should meet a number of conditions of admission:
As a candidate you may submit supporting documentation i.e. letter(s) of recommendation from employers or professors. If you do so, please upload them directly in the electronic application form.
The selection process starts after the closing date of the vacancy notice. It takes usually around two months, unless the number of candidates is very large. When the selection is completed, you will be informed by email of the outcome. At that stage you may either (i) receive a traineeship offer, (ii) be notified that you are on a reserve list as you have been assessed as a suitable candidate, or (iii) be informed that your application has not been successful. In cases (ii) and (iii), you may still apply for further traineeship vacancies.
If you are selected we will offer you a contract for a period between 3 to 6 months, which may be prolonged once up to a total of 12 months.
We will also offer you a grant of either €1050 or €1900 per month, depending on the tasks you will be expected to perform and on your relevant qualifications (unless otherwise stated in the vacancy). For example, trainees who have completed at least 2 years of PhD study and who apply for a traineeship vacancy that requires such a level of qualification may be granted €1900. If your place of recruitment is more than 50 km from the ECB, we will also offer you residence (or equivalent reimbursement), and will reimburse you for your travel expenses at the beginning and end of your traineeship.
The residence consists of a single occupancy self-catering apartment (including kitchenette and bathroom). Alternatively you may be reimbursed for private accommodation, for rental costs up to €750 (including utilities) per month, against presentation of a signed rental contract and proof of payment No additional costs such as agent's fees/deposits/cleaning will be reimbursed. In case of shared apartments, costs will be divided by the number of occupants.
The travel expenses at the beginning and end of their traineeship are reimbursed under the following guidelines:
Traineeship vacancies are published from time to time throughout the year. Please note that interviews for traineeships will take place via telephone.
This programme is aimed at young, highly promising economists who have completed a first degree and are aiming to enrol in a Masters/PhD programme in economics or a related field at a leading international university. Participants have the opportunity to cooperate closely with the economists in the Directorate General Research and are involved in research projects at all stages. Project findings are usually published in international academic journals.
Trainees registered in this programme are subject to the Rules governing the ECB traineeship programme ( download ). An overview is given in the section "Traineeships" above.
This programme is aimed at recent graduates or students who are close to finishing their graduate studies in economics, statistics, finance, business administration or related disciplines. Participants gain exposure to conceptual and operational statistical work in a policy-oriented environment that contributes to the decision-making processes at the ECB. They are also responsible for one or several tasks including information management, quality control of data transmitted to the ECB as well as statistical analytical tasks relating to time-series analysis and the assessment of banking industry and financial market developments. Trainees are required to complete a self-contained conceptual or empirical study or to develop an operational application suitable for presentation at seminars.
Trainees registered in this programme are subject to the Rules governing the ECB traineeship programme ( download ). An overview is given in the section "Traineeships" above.
The ECB offers short-term assignments which are open exclusively to staff of:
Positions of this type are offered at one the following levels.
The specific expertise and skills sought depend on the needs of the recruiting division. The positions cover the full range of functions.
Candidates recruited for ESCB/IO assignments perform the same work as the division’s usual staff members. They are seconded to the ECB by their current employer on the basis of a short-term ECB contract for a minimum period of three months to a maximum of 36 months (including extensions). Fixed-term ESCB/IO contracts for specific project-based work are awarded from time to time. Candidates shall have a contract of employment with the home institution for a period of at least one year beyond the duration of the ECB contract being offered.
The Wim Duisenberg Research Fellowship Programme, which is organised by the Directorate General Research (DG/R), welcomes applications from leading economists in academia, central banks and top research institutions.
The programme aims to:
Research fellows produce papers of a theoretical or empirical nature for presentation at internal and external conferences and for publication in the ECB Working Paper Series and, possibly, a refereed journal. The research project must focus on issues of relevance to in the work of DG/R.
Participants in the programme exchange opinions, insights and experience with ECB staff members, both in DG/R and in other business areas.
The Language Services Division, the Secretariat Division (English Translation and Editing Section) and the Legislation Division draw on the services of professional translators and lawyer-linguists with experience in the ECB’s fields of competence to translate from English into other official languages of the EU – and vice versa – on a freelance basis. The Language Services Division and the Secretariat Division's English Translation and Editing Section also use professional freelance linguists for terminology-related work and for editing and proof-reading assignments in English.
All job openings at the ECB are published via our online recruitment system, which is accessible from this page. Applications are only accepted via this system.
When considering whether to apply for a position, make sure you read the vacancy notice carefully and apply only for those jobs that suit your experience, strengths and aspirations.
The application form is extended online curriculum vitae, specific to the ECB, in which you can set out your education, competencies, achievements and professional experience. We use the form to evaluate your eligibility and suitability for the specific position, taking into account the requirements stipulated in the vacancy notice. It is your opportunity to show the selection committee how well you are suited to the job.
If, subsequently, you want to apply for another job, you can update your original application form and change your information in the online recruitment system before submitting a new application.
Each application form contains a question about your reasons for applying for the position. The selection committee will use your answer to gain an initial understanding of what motivates you and whether the job can offer what you are looking for. When answering this question, please focus on your motivation. Information about your knowledge and experience should be provided in other sections, such as education and work experience, and not repeated under this question.
It it in your interest to provide detailed information on your responsibilities in the application form. This accurately reflects what you are doing or have done in each of your previous jobs and will help the selection committee to understand better how your past experience relates to the scope of tasks of the advertised position.
After the closing date for submitting applications, a selection committee consisting of staff from the recruiting business area, human resources and other business areas will draw up a shortlist of candidates.
The selection committee will begin by eliminating any applicants who do not meet all the minimum requirements. Minimum requirements are expressed simply as requirements. For example:
If you do not meet all such requirements listed in the vacancy notice, your application will be rejected.
If necessary, the selection committee may then consider additional criteria in order to further reduce the number of candidates on the shortlist. Such additional criteria will typically be described as assets or an advantage in the list of requirements. For example:
Shortlisted candidates will be invited to participate in the next stage of the recruitment process, typically an interview and written exercise or, on occasion, an additional pre-screening exercise. All other applicants will be informed by e-mail that their application was not successful.
If you are shortlisted, our recruitment team will call you to arrange an interview. Candidates are expected to respond to interview invitations within 48 hours and make themselves available for interviews within 5 working days. Therefore please ensure that you can be reached via the telephone numbers and email address provided in your application form.
We use a range of assessment tools to make sure we find the candidate whose profile most closely matches the requirements of the position. If invited for an interview, we will inform you which assessment tool you can expect on the day. Our assessment tools include:
During the interview(s) you will be asked about your knowledge, experience, opinions as well as how you have handled past situations and how you would handle specific scenarios.
These assessment tools will cover a number of the key technical and behavioural competencies which have been identified in the vacancy notice.
In addition to the standard assessment tools, for all managerial appointments an external provider will assess your managerial and leadership competencies in relation to the level of the position you have applied for. This assessment is designed to provide an insight into candidates’ strengths and development needs.
The management assessment includes:
|Before the interview||Day of the interview||After the interview||Optional - after closure of campaign|
|Online assessments||Competency-based interview||Report||Phone feedback (upon request)|
|• Personality (OPQ)
• Motivation (MQ)
• Executive Scenarios test
|• Standardised questions
• Funnel technique
• Rating sheet
• Executive Scenarios test results
• Additional information from OPQ and MQ
|30 minutes dedicated to:
• report-related questions
• explaining the process
• report structure
• content, etc.
Prior to the day of the competency-based interview, candidates will receive via e-mail links to three online assessments to complete (approximately one hour and 40 minutes):
During the two-hour competency-based interview, two consultants will ask you to provide specific, behaviour-based examples in order to assess you on six clusters of competencies: managing teams, coaching/developing, guiding people, adaptability/relationship building/influencing, innovation/strategic thinking, and communication.
The nature of the assessment tools used is such that candidates cannot really prepare for the assessment. It is not a technical assessment or a university-style exam; rather, it is about work experience, motivation, and personality. The online assessments are not designed to test your technical knowledge – there are no right or wrong answers – so you should be as discerning and honest as possible. You will need to ensure that you can take the assessments in a quiet environment where there will be no interruptions.
The competency-based interview aims to measure various behavioural indicators around the six clusters of competencies. You should reflect on how your own experiences relate to these competencies and put together some ideas on situations in which you made a difference, how you did that and what the outcome was. You should expect your behaviour to be critically reflected on as part of the interview process. The consultants will look not only at the positive aspects of the situations you describe, but also at aspects where they see scope for development. They will explore both negative and positive behaviour in relation to the assessed competencies.
The external provider will use the results of the online assessments and the competency-based interview to provide the ECB Selection Committee with an assessment of your managerial potential in the form of a report. The individual assessment reports are competency-based and tailor made to the ECB competency model. The Selection Committee will use the assessment of the candidate’s managerial potential as additional information when making its decision. The outcome of the management and leadership assessment remains valid if the period between the date of the external provider’s assessment and the closure date for applications is less than 12 months.
At the end of the selection process, the recruiting manager will offer you oral feedback on the outcome of the selection process. You may also request, in addition to written feedback on the other parts of the assessment, a copy of the report from the external provider. The report gives interviewed candidates an opportunity to learn from the process. You might consider which points you may have overlooked, which aspects you can relate to, and which areas you would like to work on, for example. You may also wish to have a 30-minute telephone conversation with one of the consultants from the external provider in order to discuss the report in more detail.
One of the recruitment assessment tools used by the ECB is a competency-based interview. The interview may take place via telephone, by video conference or in person. You will be notified in advance of the date, time, duration and means and/or place of the interview as well as of the names of the interview panel members. During the interview, we aim to learn more about your skills, experience and behavioural competencies that are directly related to your likely success in the job.
Competency-based interviews provide us with specific examples of past performance, which are regarded as a better predictor of future performance than theoretical questions. Examples of such competency-based questions are:
One of the best ways you can prepare for your interview is to analyse your performance in your current and past roles in the light of the competencies outlined in the job description. Take some time to think of examples from your previous work that are relevant to those competencies and that provide evidence of your strengths and abilities. You will find it easier to answer the interview questions and illustrate your strengths and experience if you plan your answers in advance. You may find it useful to ask yourself:
You may also wish to do some research on competency-based or behaviour-based interviews. A lot of material on preparing for such interviews is available.
Familiarise yourself with the ECB and its main tasks and objectives and think about how you could contribute to the work of the ECB and to the specific job you are applying for.
Find out as much as you can about the business area you are applying to work in. Information is available on ECB’s website. You may take the opportunity towards the end of the interview to ask questions to which the answers are not readily available online.
Listen to questions carefully. Keep to the point. Be as specific as possible.
Be open and honest and communicate your thoughts, views and feelings to the interviewers. We want to get an impression of you as a person and not just of your knowledge and competencies. If you don’t understand a question, simply ask the interviewer to repeat it.
Take time to think through your answers, and use relevant examples from your experience in the workplace.
Take the opportunity to ask some targeted questions that will help you to decide whether the ECB and this position are right for you. Try to ask the right questions to get the information you need.
If you travel to Frankfurt for an interview, we will reimburse you for your expenses according to our interview travel expenses guidelines download .
If you are successful, the recruiting manager will call you to provide feedback on your performance at the interview and inform you of our intention to offer you the position.
If you are unsuccessful, you will be informed by the recruiting manager, who will also be in a position to provide you with feedback on your performance at the interview upon request.
You may also ask to receive the feedback in writing by sending an e-mail to email@example.com. Please provide your name and the vacancy number, and send your request from the e-mail address given in your application form.
In the event that you wish to formally challenge the decision of the selection committee, you should follow the procedures indicated in Articles 41 and 42 of the Conditions of Employment for Staff of the European Central Bank or Articles 32 and 33 of the Conditions of Short-Term Employment. This involves requesting an administrative review of the decision within two months from the date on which it was communicated. The request should be sent to the Director General HR, Budget and Organisation. You have the possibility to make a complaint to the European Ombudsman, but this will not affect the above-mentioned deadline.
The ECB participates in job and student fairs from time to time. Upcoming events will be posted here.
Applying for a position at the ECB implies sharing your personal information with us. We take the need to protect your data seriously.
The data you submit is processed in order to assess your suitability for a position at the ECB.
Some of the data you submit (name, address, education and qualifications, work experience, spoken languages and IT skills) will be accessed by the members of the Selection Committee established for each recruitment procedure. In addition, if you apply for a managerial position at the ECB and get short-listed, your managerial skills will be assessed by our external provider. We will therefore share your application details with our provider for this purpose and they will also contact you directly on our behalf. Our external provider is bound contractually to respect the confidentiality of information as required under data protection regulations.
Other information such as disabilities and your declaration regarding any criminal records is only viewed by Human Resources. We do not disclose or sell your data to third parties.
Your personal information is handled in accordance with the IT security and confidentiality rules of the ECB and the confidentiality and security requirements of Regulation (EC) No 45/2001. This Regulation concerns the protection of individuals in respect of the processing of personal data by the Community institutions and bodies and the free movement of such data.
As an applicant, you can access and update or correct your data on line at any time up to the vacancy deadline. You can also update your data should you decide to apply for another vacancy. We store your data for 24 months after closure of a recruitment campaign.
If you have any further questions concerning the protection of your data you may address them to the Deputy Director General, Human Resources Budget and Organisation, who is the responsible data controller. You may also address your concerns to the European Data Protection Supervisor.