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Head of Administration and HR Unit

We are looking for our next Head of Administration and HR Unit

We are looking for a highly motivated and qualified candidate take on the post of the Head of Administration and HR Unit in the FMO’s Compliance and Administration Department.

The Financial Mechanism Office (FMO) is the secretariat of the EEA Grants and Norway Grants, and is affiliated to the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) in Brussels.

We are looking for a highly motivated and qualified candidate take on the post of the Head of Administration and HR Unit in the FMO’s Compliance and Administration Department.

The overall objectives of the Grants are to reduce economic and social disparities in the European Economic Area (EEA) and to strengthen bilateral relations between the Donor States (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) and the 15 Beneficiary States (Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Cyprus, Estonia, Hungary, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal, Malta, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia).

The Grants are based on a programme model where the Beneficiary States are responsible for the programmes and for projects implemented under the programmes. Some programmes, for example in the areas of energy, innovation as well as Civil Society, are operated by the FMO. The Grants are implemented in line with the principles of Results-Based Management. The allocation for the current funding period (2014-2021) totals €2.8 billion. The priority sectors are:

• Innovation, Research, Education and Competitiveness;
• Social Inclusion, Youth Employment and Poverty Reduction;
• Environment, Energy, Climate Change and Low Carbon Economy;
• Culture, Civil Society, Good Governance and Fundamental Rights and Freedoms;
• Justice and Home Affairs.

The FMO offers an international, stimulating and diverse workplace, with a current staff of over 60 employees comprising 18 nationalities. Our values are:
• Professionalism;
• Cooperation;
• Trust, responsibility and respect.

More information can be found on our website at: www.eeagrants.org.

The position is open to nationals of the EEA EFTA States (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) and to nationals of the member states of the European Union.

Division: Financial Mechanism Office
Location: Brussels
Category/Level: A5
Start Date: As soon as possible
Closing Date: 25-11-2018
Job Reference: VA 24/2018
Duration of Appointment: Fixed-term three years (renewable once if in the interest of the FMO)


The Head of the Administration and HR Unit leads the unit’s work. The unit is responsible for HR management, administration, information governance, staff support and office logistics of the FMO. Four administrative staff members and the record management officer report to the her/him. The Head of the Administration and HR Unit reports to the Head of the Compliance and Administration Department.

The Head of Administration and HR Unit has the responsibility of ensuring HR services in the FMO. S/he will be a key contributor to the development of the culture, people and practices. S/he works closely with the senior management on HR, organisational development and administrative matters. S/he has the responsibility for FMO’s work on employee engagement and ensures communication to the staff on HR matters.

• Guide staff planning and people management strategies;
• Recruit new staff members to the FMO;
• Advise on HR issues, including interpretation of Staff Regulations and Rules;
• Review and develop HR policies and procedures;
• Manage and ensure the delivery of FMO’s general training plan and advise on learning and development questions;
• Support the senior management with liaison with FMO’s Ombudsteam and Staff Committee;
• Coordinate the induction of new staff;
• Liaise with the EFTA Secretariat on the provision of HR and other administrative services under the Service Sharing Agreement;
• Collaborate with the EFTA Administration on HR and administration development projects;
• Ensure compliance with internal information governance policies;
• Ensure staff services and office logistics;
• Oversee the invoice, contract and travel management; and
• Lead, coach and supervise the staff of the unit.

The FMO is considering moving the responsibility for overseeing the FMO’s information management to the Administration and HR Unit. This would mean also an increase of staff reporting to the Head of Administration and HR Unit.

The Head of the Administration and HR Unit works in close co-operation with the EFTA Secretariat Administration. Part of the HR and administrative services are provided by the EFTA Secretariat under a Service Sharing Agreement.


Relevant University degree, Master’s level.


Required experience:
• Minimum of eight years of relevant work experience, including proven management experience in HR and administration;
• Experience in recruitment; and
• Experience in information systems and tools supporting HR and administration.

Desired experience:
• Experience in information management;
• Experience in developing HR policies and procedures;
• Experience in overseeing and coordinating administrative tasks and staff services; and
• Experience in working in an international environment.


• Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to motivate a team;
• Proven organisational and administrative skills;
• Excellent communication skills and ability to cooperate with all stakeholders across the organisation and externally;
• Excellent drafting skills;
• Proactive attitude and cultural sensitivity;
• Diplomatic and negotiation skills;
• High level of confidentiality, discretion and tact; and
• Ability to multitask and work to tight deadlines.


Excellent oral and written communication skills in English (the working language of the FMO) is a requirement. Knowledge of another EFTA/EU language is an asset.

Employment Terms

Grade: A5

Annual starting salary: EUR 106,606.08 

Appointments are normally made at step 1 of the grade. The Director of the FMO reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a level different from that advertised. Through its recruitment policy, the FMO wants to ensure diversity in terms of gender, age and culture.

We offer a very interesting and challenging position in a dynamic and diverse environment and the opportunity to work in a team of highly qualified people. Salaries and related payments are exempt from taxation by the EFTA Member States, and as regulated in headquarters agreements, in the EFTA host states. Depending on the candidate’s family status, benefits and allowances may apply.

For further information on this position please contact : Mr Tom Tjomsland, Head of Compliance and Administration Department ttj@efta.int or +32 2 211 18 09 or Ms Laura Harjapää, Head of Administration and HR Unit lha@efta.int or +32 2 211 18 60.

Please note that only applications received via our web tool will be considered.

Deadline for submission of application: 25 November 2018. The interviews will take place in early December.

Apply here