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Inspection report in case 1102/2019/AMF on the assessment of a candidate’s professional experience in an EU staff selection procedure organised by the European Personnel Selection Office for the selection of administrators in the field of archivists and records management

Introduction, procedural information and purpose of the inspection of documents

The Ombudsman’s inquiry team introduced its members and outlined the legal framework that applies to meetings and inspections held by the Ombudsman. In particular, it informed EPSO that the applicable rules provide that the Ombudsman will not disclose any information or documents identified by EPSO as confidential, neither to the complainant nor to any other person outside the Ombudsman’s office, without EPSO’s prior agreement.[1]

The inquiry team also explained that the purpose of the meeting and inspection was to receive further information from EPSO on the assessment of the complainant´s professional experience in the eligibility phase of competition EPSO/AD/362/18 for the recruitment of administrators in the field of archivistics and records management.[2]

The Ombudsman’s inquiry team explained that the Ombudsman’s main interest in organising inspection meetings as a first step in inquiries into concerns about EPSO candidates being excluded from selection procedures is to obtain additional information and explanations on the work done by Selection Boards to be able to reassure complainants that during the selection procedures, all relevant aspects are being taken into account.

Information exchanged

EPSO explained that the Selection Board based its assessment of the candidates’ eligibility on pre-established admission criteria for competition EPSO/AD/363/18[3], which were applied equally to all candidates. EPSO explained how the Selection Board assessed the complainant’s professional experience:

  • The complainant declared 15 months of professional experience under entry 1 of her application form. However, the tasks described by the complainant were considered to be only 50% relevant to the duties described in the notice of competition.
  • The complainant declared 24 months of professional experience under entry 2 of her application form. However, the tasks described by the complainant were considered to be only 25%relevant to the duties described in the notice of competition.
  • The 7 months of professional experience declared by the complainant under entry 3 of her application form were not considered relevant to the duties described in the notice of competition. This is because the tasks described by the complainant corresponded to those of an IT Business Analyst.
  • The complainant declared 12 months of professional experience under entry 4 of her application form. However, the tasks described by the complainant were considered to be only 50% relevant to the duties described in the notice of competition.

Based on the above, the complainant´s professional experience relevant to the duties described in the notice of competition was calculated at 19,5 months. The complainant was thus not admitted to the competition, as she did not have the required “3 years’ professional experience relevant to the duties”[4].

EPSO also explained that the Chair and the Vice-chair of the Selection Board had reviewed the files of all the candidates to ensure consistency in the assessment.

Documents inspected

During the meeting, the Ombudsman’s inquiry team obtained a copy of the following documents:

  • Admission criteria EPSO/AD/362/18 - Administrators (AD 6) in the field of archivistics/records management, 22 January 2019 (CONFIDENTIAL)
  • The Selection Board’s admission form of candidate N°4427183 (the complainant) in competition EPSO/AD/362/18, 22 January 2019 (CONFIDENTIAL)

EPSO identified both documents as confidential. This means that no access may be granted to these documents to any other person outside the Ombudsman’s office.[5]

Brussels, 24 July 2019

 

Head of Inquiries Unit 4                                                                  Legal Officer, Inquiries Unit 4

 

[1] Article 4.8 of the European Ombudsman's Implementing Provisions.

[2] https://epso.europa.eu/epsocrs-ref-numbers/epso-ad-362-18_en.

[3] Document adopted by the Selection Board on 22 January 2019.

[4] See section “Am I eligible to apply?” of the Notice of Competition

[5] Article 4.8 of the European Ombudsman's Implementing Provisions.