APPLICATIONS OPEN for 2020 EPSO Secretaries Competition! | EU Training

APPLICATIONS OPEN for 2020 EPSO Secretaries Competition!

The European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO) has just released an official Notice of Competition calling forward applications for those seeking a career at the EU institutions as a Secretary.

Below we explore the specifics of this competition and the selection process that you will need to undertake.

Also, today EU Training held a live 2020 EPSO Secretaries Exams - Information Webcast. The recording of this session is now available to view here for FREE.

Want to join the conversation and talk to other candidates about this competition? 
Get helpful hints and advice from other candidates via the EPSO AST and SC Exams Facebook group.

Getting ready for the 2020 EPSO Secretaries competition?
Access practice packages here, and view methodology webinars here - some are even FREE!

Competition Snapshot  I  Eligibility Criteria  I  Selection Process  I  How Can You Apply?

 

Competition Snapshot

  • Open for Applications: 25 June, 2020
  • Application Deadline: 8 September, 2020 (12-noon Brussels Time)
  • Grades: SC-1 and SC-2
  • This competition covers two grades - you may only apply to one
  • Most of the posts will be based in Brussels and Luxembourg

Under this competition, the following grades and reserve lists have been advertised, from which the EU institutions may recruit new members:

Grade Candidates Sought
EPSO/AST-SC/10/20 - SC 1 328
EPSO/AST-SC/10/20 - SC 2 207

As a secretary, you will prepare, manage and finalise documents and files, support the organisation and coordination of the unit’s and/or the department’s activities (meetings, official travel) and find, compile and disseminate information (updating databases, files).

 

Eligibility Criteria

Candidates will need to satisfy the following:

  • Have EU citizenship
  • Fulfilled any military service requirements
  • Meet the character requirements for the duties concerned
  • Have knowledge of at least TWO official EU languages:
    • Language 1: Have a thorough knowledge (minimum C1 level) of one of the 24 official EU languages - will be defined as your Language 1.
    • Language 2: Have a good command (minimum B2 level) of either English OR French and MUST BE different to your Language 1 choice - will be defined as your Language 2.

Qualifications & Work Experience

Secretaries - SC-1 Grade:

  1. Secondary education attested by a diploma giving access to post-secondary education, Plus a minimum of 3 years of professional experience directly related to the duties described in the Notice of Competition. OR
  2. Professional training (equivalent to European Qualification Framework Level 4). Plus a minimum of 3 years of professional experience directly related to the duties described in the Notice of Competition. 

Secretaries - SC-2 Grade:

  1. Secondary education attested by a diploma giving access to post-secondary education, Plus a minimum of 7 years of professional experience directly related to the duties described in the Notice of Competition. OR
  2. Professional training (equivalent to European Qualification Framework Level 4). Plus a minimum of 7 years of professional experience directly related to the duties described in the Notice of Competition.

Please consult ANNEX II of the Notice of Competition for examples of minimum qualifications.  

 

Selection Process

Please note: You can complete your application in any of the 24 official EU languages​.

1. PRE-SELECTION COMPUTER-BASED TESTS

This phase of the competition is made up of a series of computer-based multiple-choice reasoning tests and professional skills tests.

Tests

Language

Question

Duration

Pass mark

Numerical Reasoning

Language 1

10 questions

20 min

5/10

Verbal Reasoning

Language 1

20 questions

35 min

Verbal + Abstract Combined 15/30

Abstract Reasoning

Language 1

10 questions

10 min

Accuracy & Precision Language 2 40 questions 6 min Accuracy + Prioritising Combined 44/88
Prioritising & Organising Language 2 24 questions 30 min
  • The results of the verbal, numerical and abstract reasoning tests WILL NOT BE taken into account when calculating your final pre-selection CBT exam score.
  • However, you must reach the minimum pass mark in ALL reasoning tests in order to qualify for the next stage of the competition.
  • You NEED TO GET one of the highest combined marks for the two professional skills tests (Accuracy & Precision + Prioritising & Organising) to make it on to the next stage of the competition.
  • The results of the computer-based tests are eliminatory and will not be taken into account in your final overall competition score.

2. INTERMEDIATE TEST: MICROSOFT OFFICE WORD SKILLS TEST

You MUST complete this test in your chosen Language 2 - English OR French.

Those who scored the highest marks in the Pre-selection Exam will be invited to take part in the computer-based Microsoft Office Word Skills Test. 

A maximum of 5 times the number of successful candidates sought per grade will be invited to this phase.

We are currently in the process of developing more practice tests for this exam - keep your eyes on this page for updates.

Tests

Language

Question

Duration

Pass mark

Microsoft Office Word Skills Test

Language 2

50 questions

60 min

25/50

3. ELIGIBILITY CHECK

EPSO will check the data provided by each candidate via their online application against the eligibility requirements of this competition. Remember that you can fill out your application in any of the 24 Official EU languages. 

Eligibility will be checked in descending order of the overall marks obtained in the Microsoft Office Word Skills Test.

Approximately 2 times the number of successful candidates sought for each grade will move on to the Assessment Centre stage of the selection process. 

4. ASSESSMENT CENTRE

Those who scored the highest marks in the Microsoft Office Word Skills Test and passed the Eligibility Criteria will be invited to the Assessment Centre

Please note that the Assessment Centre will most likely take place in Brussels and will need to be completed in your chosen Language 2 - English or French.

7 general competencies, as well as field-related competencies required for this role, will be tested via two types of exercises:

  1. Role Play - 1 & 2
  2. Field-Related Interview

Each general competency will be awarded a mark out of 10, with a total pass mark required of 35/70.

In addition to this, the Field-Related Interview will require a minimum pass mark of 35/70.

5. RESERVE LIST

After checking candidates’ supporting documents, the selection board will draw up a Reserve List for each grade of eligible candidates who obtained the highest overall score, until the number of successful candidates sought is reached.

 

How Can You Apply?

Make sure to ALWAYS check the official Notice of Competition and understand the rules relating to the exams. For full details on this selection procedure read the official Notice of Competition and the General Rules Governing Open Competitions to ensure you have the required qualifications and satisfy the eligibility criteria before applying. 

To start the application process, click below for the different grades:

 

Are You New to EPSO Competitions? 

EU Training offers a wealth of practice materials for all stages and levels of the EU institutions’ selection exams.

Check out our FREE E-bookswebinarswebcasts and e-learning materials to help you excel.

If you have a question or need additional help in understanding the EPSO processes, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Want to see what these EPSO Pre-Selection exams look like? 
Try our FREE EPSO Exam Demo

Unsure how the EPSO selection process works? 
View our short video - ‘New To EPSO Competitions’

 

Useful reading:

The Motivation Challenge - What To Write In Your EPSO Application?

13 Best EPSO Preparation Resources - Free and Paid

What EU Job Applicants Should Always Keep in Mind

6 Reasons Why EU Exam Candidates Fail