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Traineeships 2023 - Traineeship for persons with disabilities - Help build a more effective, accountable, transparent and ethical administration in the EU - OMB/T/2023/5

The European Ombudsman is an independent and impartial body that works to promote good administration at EU level. The Ombudsman investigates complaints about maladministration by EU institutions and bodies, and also proactively looks into broader systemic issues.

Our guiding principles are accountability, transparency, and trust.

The Ombudsman is happy to organise, for the first time in 2023, a traineeship program for persons with disabilities. The goal of this program is to provide individuals with disabilities a valuable work experience as trainee in the European Ombudsman, allowing them to gain familiarity with its activities.

Candidates with a disability are welcome to apply simultaneously for the other traineeship schemes if they fulfil the eligibility criteria.

Equal opportunities

The European Ombudsman is an equal opportunities employer and welcomes applications from anybody who meets the eligibility criteria and required qualifications.

The Ombudsman aims to promote equal opportunities by assisting individuals with disabilities in obtaining professional experience through the program, thereby improving their chances for future employment.

1. 2023 traineeship scheme

We invite you to apply for a traineeship starting on 1 September 2023. We offer one paid traineeship of one year, subject to a positive assessment of the trainee’s performance.

Candidates shall have the opportunity to work in one of the following domains:

  • Case-handling
  • Communication
  • General administration
  • Finance
  • Human Resources

2. Eligibility criteria and required qualifications

Candidates should be nationals of a Member State of the European Union or of an accession/candidate country.

Candidates must have a disability recognised by a national authority or any accredited body. Together with the application, they must provide, in one of the EU official languages, the necessary evidence, such as:

  • a document issued by a national or regional authority or an accredited body in a Member State of the EU;
  • an EU disability card;
  • a recent certificate issued by a medical doctor: the certificate must have been issued in a Member State of the EU and be not more than six months old; it must state clearly the condition which the medical doctor considers a disability and include confirmation from the signing medical doctor that, to the best of their understanding, the condition in question is a long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairment which, in interaction with various barriers, may hinder full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.

Candidates must have a university degree or be at least third year students (or equivalent) of a higher education establishment.

They should have a thorough knowledge of one of the official languages of the EU and a very good knowledge of another. The main working language of the Ombudsman’s Office is English and therefore a good knowledge of English is required.

Candidates should not have benefitted, for more than eight consecutive weeks or two full months, from a previous paid traineeship or work contract in a European institution, body, agency, office, service, delegation, representation, including the office of a Member of the European Parliament or of a European political group.

3. Selection criteria

Candidates applying should have:

  • very good understanding of the role of the European Ombudsman;
  • very good understanding of the EU institutions;
  • good drafting skills in English;
  • knowledge of other official languages of the European Union;
  • analytical and research skills.

4. Responsibilities and tasks

The trainee’s daily tasks will generally resemble those of junior administrator officials early in their careers, including tasks such as:

  • Conducting research on specific projects related to the Ombudsman Office;
  • Collecting documentation, drafting reports, etc.;
  • Provide support in the main activities of the institution (Administration, Communication and Inquiries);
  • Handling of “out-of-mandate” complaints;
  • Replying to information requests from members of the public;
  • Preparing meetings and drafting minutes;
  • Participating in meetings;
  • Translating documents.

The selected trainee will receive a detailed list of tasks at the beginning of the traineeship according to the domain chosen.

5. Selection procedure

Applicants must submit their applications in the online application system of the website of the European Ombudsman. Exceptionally and for duly justified reasons, the Office may accept applications submitted by e-mail.

Applications should include the following documents:

  • a completed online application form;
  • an English language version of the applicant's curriculum vitae;
  • a one-page cover letter in English explaining the reasons and the motivation for applying for the traineeship;
  • copies of the applicant’s diplomas, degrees, or certificates (copies do not need to be certified or translated); and
  • document(s) proving the disability.

The provision of information requested when applying online, and of the supporting documents, is obligatory. Incomplete applications will automatically be excluded from the registration system.

!!!Your application does not have to include a reference letter.

Please be aware that there is no requirement for a reference letter, despite the online application tool showing a field for a reference letter.

Following the assessment of the applications and their supporting documents, longlisted applicants will be invited to take a test.

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to an interview on the phone or through a video-calling tool.

The Ombudsman’s Office will inform applicants of their results at each step of the selection procedure. The final results will be communicated to the selected candidates on 30 June 2023, at the latest.

If candidates require special adjustments during the application process and/or during the selection procedure due to their disability, they are invited to contact the traineeship office at: eotraineeship@ombudsman.europa.eu

6. Reasonable accommodation

Reasonable accommodation (RA) allows individuals with disabilities to work on equal footing with others. This right exists unless it would place an undue burden on the employer.

The Ombudsman's office can provide accommodations such as modifications to equipment, practices or policies, but each case must be evaluated separately.

Should candidates need reasonable accommodation arrangements for their work during the traineeship, they shall submit a request together with the application. The request shall be accompanied by proper justification of the need for RA arrangements.

Only the selected candidate will be requested to provide the relevant supporting documents to justify their request for reasonable accommodation. The European Parliament's Medical Service will assess the supporting documents to determine the validity of the request for reasonable accommodation and propose the necessary arrangements.

7. Place of work

Brussels or Strasbourg

8. Deadline for applications

You must submit your application through the online application system on the Ombudsman’s website by 3 April 2023 (13:00 Brussels time) at the very latest.

Please, avoid waiting until the last minute to send your application. Carefully read the rules and prepare the required scanned documents in advance, before starting the registration process.

For general information on traineeships, their aim, duration and monthly grants see the Decision of the European Ombudsman concerning traineeships.

For general information on the processing of your personal data see Privacy Statement relating to the selection of trainees for the traineeships for persons with disabilities in the European Ombudsman’s Office.