Frequently asked questions
How to apply?
To apply for an open competition you must use the on-line application system. Consult the vacancy notices and then click on the "Apply" button next to the one that interests you. You will then have to fill an on-line application and submit it before the deadline of the competition (midnight Central European Time).
What do I need to apply?
Before beginning the application process, you will need to have an e-mail address in order to set up a user account. Once you have registered you will receive a confirmation by e-mail of your user account details and can then proceed with the application.
Please note that all the correspondence will be done through this email address, so please check that the email address is correct.
How do I know if I have all the qualifications to apply?
Please read the vacancy notice of the post carefully. It will give you all the necessary details (in the competencies section) to check if you have the qualifications needed. Please check in particular the professional and technical competencies and the linguistic skills.
Do I have to complete my application in one session?
You do not need to enter all information in one session. You can save your details at any point and return to complete the application at a later time by logging on your user account.
We advise you not to wait until the last moment to submit your application.
Is there a time limit to fill the application form?
You will be automatically disconnected from the system after 20 minutes if you did not click on a "save" button at the bottom of the screen.
We advise you to click regularly on the "Save" button.
Can I attach other documents to the application form?
No, all the information in support of your application must be in your form; no other documents will be accepted and no other additional information will be considered after the deadline of the vacancy notice. If your application form is not complete, it will not be considered.
Original and copies of your diploma(s) will only be asked at the interview stage.
Can I send my application form in paper version or in an email?
No, all applications must be made on-line using this system, apart from in exceptional and justified circumstances (in this case, please contact us before the deadline by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org). The Council of Europe will not accept applications sent by post, fax or e-mail.
I cannot submit my online application; what should I do?
There can be different explanations. Please check:
- that you have filled in all the compulsory information (indicated with an asterisk (*))
- that all the sections appear in green and indicate "Complete"
- that you have filled in all the sub-sections. For example for the "Personal Information" section there are three sub-sections to complete: "Main Personal Information", "Other Personal Information" and "Personal References".
- that you have saved the page before clicking on another page. Once saved, the information will be kept in the system, even if you are disconnected, and you will be able to fill the other sections later.
Do I have to print out my application form?
We advise you to print your application form before clicking on "Submit" to enable you to check the information you have submitted.
Can I edit the information in my application after having submitted my application?
No, once you have submitted your application you will not be able to make any changes. You will only be able to update some personal information (see below).
Can I edit the information in my application after the deadline for applying?
After the deadline, only the personal information (address, phone numbers,…) can be modified. Please log into your personal account and click on "My account" on the "Applicants' Area" menu on the right of the screen.
The deadline has passed; can I still apply?
No, no application sent after the deadline (midnight Central European Time) will be considered. The "Submit" button will automatically disappear at this time and you will not be able to submit your application any more.
How can I find my application?
If you have already started to fill your application or if you have already submitted your application, please go on our website www.coe-recruitment.com and click on "login" in the applicant's area on the right menu on the screen. You will then have to put your email address and your password to find your application form.
How can I change my email address?
To change your email, please log into your personal account and click on "My account" on the "Applicants' Area" menu on the right on the screen. Then click on "Edit log on", change your email, put your password and click on "Save".
Your email will now be changed for all your applications.
How can I change my postal address?
To change your postal address, please log into your personal account and click on "My account" on the "Applicants' Area" menu on the right on the screen. Then click on "Edit profile" and change your address.
The email address I have used to apply is not valid any more. What should I do?
You should log into your account to change your email address. You can log into your account indicating your old email address as username, even if it is not valid any more. Once you have changed your email address, you will have to log with the new email as username.
Can I apply for several competitions?
Yes, you can apply for several competitions. Click on the "Apply" button for the other competition you want to apply, then put your email address and password that you used to create your account.
For your information, only the personal information will be saved from one application to the other and you will need to re-input all the other sections.
Do I need to create a new user account for each competition I apply for?
No, you do not need to create a new user account for each competition you apply for. You can keep the same email address and password.
Please note that only the personal information will be saved from one application to the other and you will need to re-input all the other sections.
What should I do if I have forgotten my password?
You should click on "Login" on the right menu, and click on "Forgotten your password". A new password will then be sent automatically to you by email.
Can I consult all emails that have been sent to me?
Yes. To see your emails, please log into your personal account and click on "My account" on the "Applicants' Area" menu on the right on the screen. Then click on "View my emails".
In which language should I complete my application?
All applications must be completed in either English or French. Applications completed in other languages will not be taken into consideration.
On which criteria will the shortlisting be based?
The shortlisting will be based on the criteria indicated in the vacancy notice (level of qualification, length and relevance of professional experience, linguistic skills, ...). All the criteria must have been reached by the closing date of the vacancy notice. If your application form is not complete, it will not be considered.
Applicants who are invited to exams and/or interviews will be asked to bring the original and copies of their diploma(s), and certified translations if the original is not in English or French. We draw your attention that any possible offer of employment and placement on reserve list is subject to the presentation of these diplomas.
Sections in the application form
Do I need to provide three referees?
Yes, you will not be able to submit your application without the names of three referees.
How do I fill the "Education" section?
For each vacancy notice, there is a minimum level of education required. You should provide details of the diploma(s) you have at this level, as well as any other relevant diploma.
If you have diplomas to list in the « Higher Education » sub-section, you must indicate the level to which it corresponds. The list is based on the three-tier system established by Bologna: 1st cycle (based on at least three years of studies): Bachelor 2nd cycle (based on an additional one to two years of studies): Master 3rd cycle (post-graduate studies of two years or more): PhD.
What should I do if some of my studies did not lead to a diploma?
If you started a diploma course but did not obtain the diploma, please indicate this in the "Education" section and tick "Not obtained". If it was a training course, please indicate this in the sub-section "Training courses" in the section "Professional experience and Training".
Can a third cycle diploma replace the professional experience?
A third cycle diploma in a relevant field could, under certain conditions, replace part of the professional experience required, up to a maximum of one year.
Do I have to bring my diplomas?
Yes, applicants who are invited to exams and/or interviews will be asked to bring the original and copies of their diploma(s), and certified translations if the original is not in English or French.
We draw your attention that any possible offer of employment and placement on reserve list is subject to the presentation of these diplomas.
Will I be shortlisted if I have the level of education required (or a higher level) but not in the field requested in the vacancy notice?
If the vacancy notice specifies a particular professional qualification (e.g. a secretarial diploma), a higher qualification (like a university degree) in another field will not be considered as equivalent. In this case, the candidate may compensate for the lack of qualification by additional relevant experience, if this is mentioned in the vacancy notice.
How do I fill the "language skills" section?
You should indicate your mother tongue, your language skill levels in the two official languages of the Council of Europe (English/French), and in certain cases, in one or several other European language(s) required for a particular post. The definitions of the language competency levels (A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, C2) used in this section correspond to the Common European Framework of Reference.
You should evaluate your linguistic skills yourself as objectively as possible. These skills might be tested through the written exams and/or during the interview.
How do I fill the "professional experience" section?
You should enter details of all your professional experience and employment details. Please make sure that your job description is clear and comprehensive so we have a good understanding of your duties and responsibilities.
The length of the professional experience required is usually mentioned in the vacancy notice and will be considered as a shortlist criteria. This professional experience should be relevant for the post and should have taken place recently.
If your professional experience is not consecutive, please explain the reasons.
Will my traineeships be considered as professional experience?
No, your traineeships are considered as training courses and thus will not be taken into consideration in the calculation of the length of your professional experience.