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Making CERN a modern and attractive employer


Director for Finance and Human Resources

Martin Steinacher introduces the new CERN career structure

On 1 September 2016, the new career structure that emerged from the latest five-yearly review of employment terms and conditions came/will come into effect. All CERN staff received a letter in August explaining what the new structure means for them personally, while an HR road show has presented the new structure around the departments. The five-yearly review focused on CERN staff, but it also concerns Fellows and Associates. Its aims are to contribute to the long-term sustainability of CERN by ensuring that we are competitive in the job market, and that we are attentive to the needs of our personnel.

Surveys conducted by both the HR Department and the Staff Association told us that people care about things like diversity, flexibility, social conditions and transparency. As a result, new procedures simplify the annual performance appraisal, clarify the promotion process and introduce more flexible conditions for parental leave and teleworking. These things are all designed to make CERN a modern and attractive employer.

Along with the new career structure come a series of benchmark jobs. All CERN staff been classified in the new structure. This exercise was not part of the five-yearly review, but goes hand-in-hand with it. It was designed to introduce clarity across the organisation, thereby facilitating long-term development and mobility. It will also help the HR department in its modelling and long-term planning of CERN’s staff needs.

A great deal of work and thought has gone into this five-yearly review, and the establishment of benchmark jobs. The process was driven and coordinated by the HR Department in close collaboration with the Staff Association, with input from all Departments and many other services around the organization. The result is something that we can be proud of, and I’d like to thank everyone who contributed to bringing the process to a successful conclusion.

Information about the five-yearly review and benchmark jobs can be found here: