Post: EMSA/CA/2014/01 - Maritime Support Services Assistant with IT Background
Directorate/Unit: Unit C.2 - Vessel Traffic and Reporting Services
Type of post: Contractual Agent
Function group: III
Location: Lisbon
Closing date for applications: 17 February 2014

The selection of candidates will follow the EMSA Staff Recruitment Procedure. Candidates must apply for this post via the EMSA website - vacancies. Please note that to make an EMSA on-line application you will need to create your EMSA profile using a valid e-mail address and a password.

1. Background

The European Maritime Safety Agency was established for the purpose of ensuring a high, uniform and effective level of maritime safety, maritime security as well as prevention of and response to pollution by ships within the EU.

The idea of a European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) originated in the late 1990s along with a number of other important European maritime safety initiatives. EMSA was set up as the regulatory agency that would provide a major source of support to the Commission and the Member States in the field of maritime safety and prevention of pollution from ships.

The European Parliament and Council Regulation (EC) No 1406/2002, as amended, provides the legal basis for the establishment of the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA).

2. Tasks of the agency

The Agency provides technical, operational and scientific assistance to the European Commission and Member States in the fields of maritime safety, maritime security, prevention of, and response to, pollution caused by ships as well as response to marine pollution caused by oil and gas installations.

The Agency also contributes to the overall efficiency of maritime traffic and maritime transport.

3. Unit C.2 - Vessel Traffic and Reporting Services

The mission of Unit C.2 is to ensure the efficient operation, monitoring and evolution of building blocks of the EU vessel traffic information system, such as SafeSeaNet and the long-range identification and tracking of vessels (LRIT), and to support EU operational reporting services, including the further development of the electronic transmission of reporting formalities including through the National Single Window (NSW) and the eManifest.


C.2.1 co-operates with Member States and the EU institutions to implement, maintain and develop the EU vessel traffic monitoring initiatives in the fields covered by Directive 2002/59/EC (as amended) and Directive 2010/65/EU, in particular through cooperating with Member States to operate SafeSeaNet, the European Union Long Range Identification and Tracking Cooperative Data Centre (EU LRIT CDC) and the LRIT International Data Exchange (LRIT IDE). In addition, assistance is provided to the European Commission and Member States for the LRIT issues within the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

The section is also responsible for the technical implementation of the Reporting Formalities Directive and in particular for the enhancement of the NSW, development of the eManifest, peer reviews, visits to Member States in the field of VTMIS.  The section collaborates with the Commission and EUROSTAT for the development of maritime statistics and co-ordinates the training programmes related to all Department C maritime information applications.


The MSS provides a 24/7 operational and technical service with responsibility for ensuring systems availability and stability by monitoring the continuity of the incoming and outgoing data flows, quality reporting and incident management linked with all Agency maritime applications. In the event of maritime emergencies the MSS acts as a single point of contact for mobilisation of EMSA operational services, and will report to EMSA and the Commission on maritime accidents in accordance with the EMSA contingency plan.

4. Functions and duties

The tasks of the Maritime Support Services (MSS) are related to the main critical operational maritime information systems monitored and operated by EMSA (SafeSeaNet, LRIT CDC, LRIT IDE, CleanSeaNet):

  • Monitoring system performance;
  • Checking the quality of data and services;
  • Ensuring the operational helpdesk for end-users in Member States and other participating countries;
  • Other similar tasks related to systems/applications under development or on a pilot basis;
  • Activating emergency services of the Agency (oil pollution recovery vessels, CleanSeaNet, experts) following the procedure of the contingency plan of the Agency.

Working in shifts, the MSS Assistant with IT background will in particular be responsible for the following tasks:

  • Executing the daily MSS routines relating to the following tasks:

        - Monitoring and reporting on the system availability,

          including communication links;

        - Providing first level IT helpdesk;

        - First diagnosis and troubleshooting in case of IT failure;

        - Monitoring and reporting on the availability of data in the systems

           (including tracking of data flow);

        - Statistical reporting on the use of the systems;

        - Monitoring, troubleshooting and reporting on availability of MSS ICT


  • Supporting other MSS staff (including training) in tasks related to daily MSS duties;
  • Drafting, checking and maintaining procedures related to the above-mentioned tasks.

5. Eligibility and Selection Criteria


Qualifications and experience required:

A.1 Education and experience:

A level of education which corresponds to post-secondary education attested by a diploma, or;

A level of secondary education attested by a diploma giving access to post-secondary education and appropriate professional experience of three years.

A.2 Language skills:

The main working language in the field of maritime safety is English. Candidates must therefore have an excellent command of spoken and written English, with a satisfactory knowledge of at least one other official language of the European Union to the extent necessary for the performance of the above-mentioned duties.


B.1 Essential:

  • At least one year of professional experience relevant to the functions and duties mentioned above;
  • Previous experience, gained though daily work, in monitoring and supporting IT applications at the first level, isolating and troubleshooting issues in complex IT systems and executing pre-agreed IT recovery procedures;
  • Previous experience, gained through daily work, in application service reporting and preparing/editing statistics;
  • Previous experience in relational database systems and querying languages;
  • Proficient user of basic desk top tools;
  • Very good communication skills.

In their CV/cover letter, applicants should provide detailed information on their specific responsibilities/tasks and the tools/applications used.

B.2 Advantageous:

  • Good presentation and reporting skills;
  • Prior working experience in national, regional or local Administration, preferably in the maritime domain;
  • Previous experience in 1st/2nd level helpdesks of IT systems/applications (preferably in shift work);
  • Knowledge of SafeSeaNet, LRIT and their legal basis;
  • Knowledge of Oracle, Linux, networks and network security (including firewalls and application proxies) and Java applications, application servers and databases;
  • Experience in managing digital certificates;
  • Previous experience in drafting, checking and maintaining procedures and documentation for ICT 1st level operations;
  • Knowledge of a third EU language.

The advantageous criteria will be considered by the Selection Board depending on the number of applicants meeting the essential criteria.


6. General conditions

In order to be eligible the candidate must:

  • Be a national of one of the Member States of the European Union or of Iceland or Norway;
  • Be entitled to your full rights as a citizen;
  • Have fulfilled the obligations imposed on you by the laws concerning military service;
  • Meet the character requirements for the duties involved and
  • Be physically fit to perform the duties linked to the post.

7. Conditions of employment

The Maritime Support Services Assistant with IT Background will be appointed by the Executive Director, upon recommendation of the Chairman of the Selection Board.

The successful candidate(s) will be appointed as a Contract staff member under the provisions of Title IV, Article 80 of the Conditions of Employment of other Servants of the European Communities.

The initial duration of the contract will be 3 years with possibility of renewal.

The successful candidate(s) will be recruited in Function Group III (FG III). The grade will be determined in accordance with the number of years of professional experience.

The basic monthly salary for the entry grade of Function Group III, (Function Group III, Grade 8, Step 1), weighted for Lisbon, before any deductions or allowances, at 1 July 2010 is 2,041.83€.

In addition to the basic salary, staff members may be entitled to various allowances, such as an expatriation allowance (16% of basic salary), household allowance, dependent child allowance and education allowance. The salary is subject to a Community tax deducted at source and staff members are exempt from national taxation.

Please note that recruitment is done in the first step of the indicated grade.

EMSA offers a comprehensive welfare package including pension scheme, medical, accident and occupational disease insurance coverage, unemployment and invalidity allowance. Further information regarding rights and conditions of employment can be found in the following document:

The tasks will be carried out on a continuous basis (24/7). The nature of the work will require shift work (operating in a rota system) outside normal office hours, including weekends and holidays. Staff working on shifts shall be financially compensated according to Art. 1 of Regulation No 300/76 of 9 February 1976, as amended. The place of employment is Lisbon, Portugal.

Candidates are advised that if they are offered a post, and accept, they must undergo a compulsory medical examination to establish that they meet the standard of physical fitness necessary to perform the duties involved.

8. Submission of applications

Candidates must submit their application electronically solely via the EMSA website within the deadline. Applications by any other means (hard copy or ordinary e-mail) or submitted after the deadline will not be accepted.

All candidates will receive an acknowledgement of receipt for their application.

EMSA is an equal opportunities employer and encourages applications from all candidates who fulfil the eligibility and selection criteria without any distinction whatsoever on any ground such as sex, race, colour, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age, marital status or other family situation or sexual orientation.

You may apply in any of the official languages of the European Community, but it would be helpful to apply in English in order to facilitate the selection process. However you are requested to state your educational qualifications and positions held in the language of origin.

9. The selection process

For each selection process a Selection Board is nominated. The selection is carried out in two phases:

1. In the first phase all eligible applications will be evaluated by the Selection Board and scored against the selection criteria. Please note that non-compliance with at least one of the essential selection criteria will result in the exclusion of the candidate from the selection process. Advantageous criteria constitute additional assets and will not result in exclusion, if not fulfilled. The advantageous criteria will be considered by the Selection Board depending on the number of applicants meeting the essential selection criteria.

On this basis, the Selection Board will invite to the interview and to the test phase the best qualified candidates (maximum of 15), on condition that they have achieved at least 60% of the highest possible score during the evaluation of applications. Should the case arise that there are various candidates scoring the same number of points in the 15th ranking, the number of candidates to be invited will be increased accordingly to accomodate this. 

2. In the second phase, the selected candidates will be invited to pass one or several written tests related to the job profile and to take part in a selection interview.

During this recruitment phase, the selected candidates will be evaluated by the Selection Board. After the interviews and tests, the Selection Board will draw up a list of the most suitable candidates to be proposed to the Appointing Authority. Only candidates receiving at least 70% of the maximum points at interview and at the test phase will be included in the list of the most suitable candidates. The Appointing Authority will select the successful candidate(s) and decide whether to also adopt a reserve list. The successful candidate(s) will be informed accordingly.

All candidates will receive an information letter of the outcome of their application.

Please note that a binding commitment can only be made after verification of all conditions and will take the form of a contract signed by the Executive Director.

The reserve list will remain valid for a period of 1 year following its establishment. Therefore candidates whose name will be put on a reserve list could be offered a contract during this period of time. Please note however that inclusion in the reserve list does not guarantee recruitment.

Please note that the selection process may take several months to be completed and that no information will be released during this period. Once a selection process has been completed, its status will be displayed in the e-recruitment.

Please note that once you have created your EMSA profile, any correspondence regarding your application must be sent or received via your EMSA profile.

For any prior enquiry, please refer to the FAQ (Frequently asked questions) section, or send an e-mail to

Requests for information and appeal:

An applicant who would like further information, or considers that he/she has grounds for complaint concerning a particular decision may, at any point in the selection procedure, request further information from the Chairperson of the Selection Board.
For information on how to lodge a complaint and/or an appeal procedure, please consult the ‘General Information for Recruitment’ overview on our website for more information: