EU careers - Enhancing awareness and attractiveness of European public sector career opportunities

From EPSA - European Public Sector Award


The EU institutions created the European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO) in 2003, in order to centralise the human resources (HR) selection function, in particular the organisation of selection procedures for permanent positions, known as competitions. In the wake of major challenges, not least the ‘war for talent’ and the growing use of HR best practice in the public sector, EPSO has modernised the EU entry selection model and methods. This modernisation has focused on three key areas: a shift from knowledge to competency-based testing, a quicker, more efficient competition structure and more effective staff planning to ensure that the correct numbers of successful candidates are sought for each selection procedure. In this way, EPSO has reformed a significant area of the HR function, in a rational and cost-efficient way. Along with modernising the selection procedures themselves, EPSO, together with its inter-institutional management board, took the decision in late 2009 to define and develop the image of careers with the EU institutions. The objectives of this action were threefold:

  • to clarify what an EU career has to offer, and thus enhance public understanding;
  • to develop a ‘brand’ which could be used collectively by all European institutions and partners across Member States, in particular by national governments, to further spread awareness;
  • to increase the attractiveness of an EU career to the very top talent across Europe.

Early in 2010 EPSO presented a proposal to its inter-institutional management board for a new EU careers brand, an employer value proposition (or ‘EVP’- the most attractive areas an EU career offers) and the steps that should be taken to roll it out. The EVP can be summarised as follows:

  • flexible but secure career progression, one employer, a lifetime of different jobs;
  • being interested and challenged by work that actually makes a difference;
  • the opportunity to travel and work with people from all over the world;
  • an environment where you are encouraged to learn new skills and languages;
  • a great package of benefits: salary, leave, career breaks and overall work/life balance.

Over 2010, numerous steps were taken to utilise the new brand and EVP to increase awareness and understanding of European public sector career opportunities. A particular focus was the use of new technology and social media to achieve these objectives and working with national governments to spread information efficiently. A year later, by spring 2011, significant progress on their objectives had been achieved: in 2010 EPSO successfully encouraged over 100,000 EU citizens to apply for an EU career; brand awareness amongst candidates is over 85%; the social community of EU citizens interested in EU careers is large and still growing on a daily basis; and the EU careers brand has been a stand-out example of collective brand ownership with EPSO, the EU institutions and Member States’ governments, all making use of the brand to promote awareness and attractiveness of EU careers.

Award info
Award category: opening up the public sector
Award type: submission
Award year: 2011
Project type
Sector: Public administration, modernisation, institutional affairs, reform
Type of activity:
Keywords: EU careers, branding, social media, visual identity, staff blogging, student representatives, webcasting
Short English description:
Further information
Organisation: EPSO
Other applicants:
Level of government: EU institutions
Size of organisation: >100
Number of people involved: >15
Country: Belgium
EU membership: EU member
Language code: en
Start date:
End date:

EU careers - Enhancing awareness and attractiveness of European public sector career opportunities (50.8429879, 4.3857605)
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