Permanent employment
Den Haag
Bachelor (EQF 6), Master (EQF 7)
Apply before:
Hours p/wk:


Organisational setting:
The post of Head of Unit - EC3 Operations is located in EC3 Operations Unit, Cyber Crime Department, Operations Directorate.

The Operations Directorate deals with the core business of Europol, improving the effectiveness and cooperation of the competent authorities in the Member States in preventing and combating serious and organised crime, as well as terrorism affecting the Member States. This requires close cooperation with the Liaison Bureaux at Europol and via them with the Operational Teams in the Member States.

Europol delivers a number of products and services to national law enforcement agencies to support them in their fight against international serious and organised crime, as well as terrorism.


The Operations Directorate hosts five distinct Departments: Operational and Analysis Centre, European Serious Organised Crime Centre, European Cyber Crime Centre, European Counter Terrorism Centre and the European Financial and Economic Crime Centre.


EC3 serves as the centre for the Member States’ fight against cybercrime in the European Union, delivering operational and investigative support to the Member States on complex cybercrime investigations. It also provides support to the European Union’s institutions and Member States in building operational and analytical capacity for investigations and cooperation with external partners. EC3 is the collective voice of European cybercrime investigators across law enforcement.


Operations EC3 is responsible for delivering the operational services of EC3. EC3 Operations has five teams: AP Cyborg (cyber-dependent crime), AP Terminal (payment fraud and on-line fraud schemes), AP Twins (child sexual exploitation), AP Dark Web (criminal use of anonymization services) and the Cyber Intelligence Team (OSINT, cryptocurrency analysis, large data sets processing and cybersecurity engagement). From EC3 Operations there is also the link with the Joint Cybercrime Action Taskforce (J-CAT).


Purpose of the post:
The Head of Unit - EC3 Operations is responsible for the effective discharge of his/her responsibilities under the supervision of the Head of the Department - EC3.


Reporting lines:
The incumbent reports to the Head of the Department - EC3.


Job environment:
This post might require participation in a shift system including weekends and nights as well as on-call duty.


Equal opportunity
Europol is an equal opportunity employer. Europol accepts applications without distinction on grounds of gender, sexual orientation, national, ethnic or social origin, religion or beliefs, family situation, age, disability, or other non-merit factors. All employment decisions are based on business needs, job requirements and qualifications, experience and skills.


Europol lives diversity and provides an inclusive work environment to all. Europol strives to recruit, develop and retain a diverse and talented workforce through application of equal opportunity and impartiality.


Functions and duties

The successful candidate will have to carry out the following main duties:

  • Lead, plan and manage the work of the Unit, ensuring the effective management and efficient use of all financial, human and other resources, in conformity with defined outcomes and objectives; identify key risks and ensure appropriate mitigation;
  • Lead the delivery and ensure the quality and timeliness of one or more of the products and services within the Unit, as agreed with the Head of the Department;
  • Manage and supervise staff: evaluate and monitor individual and team operational performance and address potential shortcomings; cultivate a culture of teamwork and cooperation;
  • Support the Head of Department with the day-to-day management and administration;
  • Supervise and organise working groups, meetings, training activities or conferences in relation to his/her areas of responsibility and maintain direct contact with the specialists/analysts in order to identify opportunities for operational support, to steer, focus and stimulate expert participation and to promote the networks as well as Europol’s products and services; 
  • Represent the Unit in external and cross-departmental engagements and provide advice on matters relating to area of responsibility; deliver presentations and prepare reports;
  • Perform any other task in the area of competence as requested by the management. 


Requirements - eligibility criteria

a. Candidates must:

  • Be a member of a competent authority within the meaning of the Article 2(a) of the Europol Regulation and enjoy full rights as a citizen of a Member State;
  • Have fulfilled any obligations imposed by the applicable laws on military service;
  • Produce appropriate character references as to his or her suitability for the performance of the duties;
  • Be physically fit to perform the duties pertaining to the post as further specified in Article 13 of the Conditions of Employment of Other Servants of the European Union (CEOS);
  • Produce evidence of a thorough knowledge of one of the languages of the Union and a satisfactory knowledge of another language of the Union to the extent necessary for the performance of the duties.

b. Candidates must have:

  • A level of education which corresponds to completed university studies attested by a diploma when the normal period of university education is four years or more; 


  • A level of education which corresponds to completed university studies attested by a diploma and appropriate professional experience of at least one year when the normal period of university education is three years; 


  • Professional training of an equivalent level in a relevant area (e.g. Police Officer’s School) and after having completed the training, at least the number of years of relevant professional experience as indicated below: 

Duration of professional training for equivalency and additional professional experience required:

  • More than 6 months and up to 1 year - 4 years
  • More than 1 year and up to 2 years - 3 years
  • More than 2 years and up to 3 years - 2 years
  • More than 3 years - 1 year

In addition to the above at least 12 years of professional work experience gained after the award of the diploma.


Requirements - selection criteria

a)    Professional experience (assessed mainly during the shortlisting):


  • Experience in the field of combating cybercrime, in line with the duties and responsibilities as mentioned in section 2;
  • Experience in managing staff of at least 5 years;
  • Experience in operational, strategic and policy matters;
  • Experience in the field of international law enforcement cooperation;
  • Experience with administration, finances and planning at management level.


  • Experience in project and/or change management. 

b)    Professional knowledge (assessed during the pre-selection - Written test and/or Interview):

  • Sound knowledge of the EU legal framework in general and the area of the law enforcement; 
  • Sound understanding of international police cooperation, especially in the field of cybercrime; 
  • Sound knowledge of the Europol legal framework and of the EU internal security architecture. 

c)    General management skills, including (assessed during the pre-selection, Assessment Centre and/or interview):  

  • The ability to set and revise objectives for the unit within the overall strategic framework and priorities of the Agency;
  • The ability to determine and focus on priorities and to monitor and evaluate the progress made towards achieving the Department’s and Units/Team members’ objectives set, in cooperation with managers;
  • The ability to organise, assign and manage the Department’s work among the members of the Units/Teams and to set them challenging but realistic objectives;
  • The ability to empower members of the Units and Teams while ensuring that they understand what is expected of them and how their work contributes to the unit’s objectives;
  • The ability to choose co-workers and to build strong teams with complementary strengths suited to the efficient pursuit of the Department’s objectives;
  • The ability to motivate members of the team to achieve the desired results and also to provide regular feedback, acknowledge success and the need for improvement in order to enable them to achieve their objectives and greatest potential;
  • The ability to develop and support career development and learning opportunities for the members of the team.

Communication skills:

  • The ability to communicate clearly and present complex subjects simply, both orally and in writing, including to the members of the team;
  • The ability to solicit inputs from and listen to staff, partners, and stakeholders.

Interpersonal skills:

  • The ability to deal with people effectively, respectfully and courteously;
  • The ability to build productive and cooperative working relationships with hierarchy and other units and colleagues.

Negotiation skills:

  • The ability to steer discussions and generate the best possible results without compromising productive working relationships with the other parties involved.

d)   Fulfil the condition stipulated in Article 5 of the Decision of the Executive Director on the Duration of contracts of employment for Temporary Agents, on the start date of the possible contract of employment which may be offered.


Selection procedure

All applications for Temporary Agent posts must be submitted through the online recruitment system accessible via Europol’s website. For further information, please consult the Europol Recruitment Guidelines.


The stages to be followed by the AACC shall be as follows:
1)  Pre-selection 
The Executive Director (ED) sets up a Pre-selection Panel composed of at least three members, of a grade and management function equal or superior to that of the function to be filled, consisting of one chair and at least one member from the administration of Europol and one member designated by the Staff Committee. Where there are no TAs within Europol fulfilling the requirement of management function and grade, the AACC may decide to designate officials or TAs from another agency or institution who fulfil that condition.


For restricted posts, the ED shall designate up to two additional members of the Pre-selection Panel if so requested by the Chairperson of the Management Board. The additional members shall consist of a representative of the Presidency or one representative of the Presidency and one representative of another Member State. The ED may invite other persons to the Pre-selection panel as observers.

The minimum pass-mark for being shortlisted, i.e. invited to participate in a pre-selection, is established as 60% of the total maximum score. The Pre-selection panel draws up a shortlist with a maximum of 8 candidates who most correspond to the profile sought. All candidates having a score equal to the 8th  highest scoring candidate will be included in the list of shortlisted candidates invited to participate in the pre-selection.


In case of candidates shortlisted for restricted posts (including restricted - Annex II posts), who had indicated membership of a competent authority in one of the Member States, Europol will seek confirmation from the relevant Europol National Unit to ensure that those candidates indeed belong to a competent authority.

The pre-selection shall rely on one or more written and oral test(s).

The Pre-selection Panel establishes the minimum pass-mark for the pre-selection. Only candidates scoring above the pass-mark for the Pre-selection will be invited to take part in an Assessment Centre and interview with an Interview Panel.


2)  Assessment Centre
All candidates scoring above the minimum pass-mark in the pre-selection shall take part in an Assessment Centre, unless they have already taken part in such an Assessment Centre in the course of the two years preceding the closing date for the receipt of applications. If a candidate has taken part in an Assessment Centre within this two-year period, but not within the 18 months preceding the closing date for the receipt of applications, s/he may at her/his request be admitted to the Assessment Centre.

The Assessment Centre evaluates, through a series of group and individual exercises and activities and in-depth interviews focused on management skills, whether the candidates possess the competencies required. Assessment Centres are conducted by an external provider. The result of the Assessment Centre shall  be taken into consideration by the ED.


3)  Interview 
The candidates scoring above the pass mark in the pre-selection shall be invited to an interview with the ED and two members of a grade and management function equal or superior to that of the function to be filled.
For restricted posts, the Interview Panel shall consist of up to two additional members if so requested by the Chairperson of the Management Board. The additional members shall consist of a representative of the Presidency or one representative of the Presidency and one representative of another Member State.


Compensation and benefits

Selection procedure:

After all stages of the selection procedure have taken place, the AACC makes a decision of appointment. 

The AACC retains the discretion to constitute a Reserve List. A Reserve List is valid for 24 months. The list of selection procedures for which reserve lists have been established is accessible on Europol’s website.

Candidates who attend the selection procedure will be informed of the outcome and/or whether they have been placed on the reserve list. 


General provisions:
The work and deliberations of the Pre-Selection and Interview Panels are confidential. It is forbidden for candidates to make direct or indirect contact with the members of the Panels or for anyone to do so on their behalf.


All enquiries related to a selection procedure should be addressed to the Europol Selection and Recruitment Team at the following email address:  Detailed information on the selection procedure- including enquiries, measures of redress and their applicable deadlines is  available in the Europol Recruitment Guidelines, which can be found on Europol’s website.


Compensation and benefits

Scale: AD9

The basic monthly salary is EUR 8,058.32 (step 1) or EUR 8,396.94 (step 2). 


The step in grade is determined on the basis of professional experience gained after the education required for the position and in line with applicable implementing rules. 


Staff pay EU tax at source but salaries are exempt from national taxes. Compulsory deductions are made for medical insurance, pension and unemployment insurance.  


Subject to the applicable conditions being met, as defined in the EU Staff Regulations (EUSR)/CEOS and further specified in the case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union, allowances such as expatriation allowance (16% of basic gross salary) or foreign residence allowance (4% of basic gross salary), household allowance, dependent child and / or education allowance may be granted.  

Staff enjoy worldwide insurance coverage by the Joint Sickness Insurance Scheme (JSIS) and are insured against sickness, the risk of occupational disease and accident.


Europol offers flexible working arrangements, a comprehensive provision for annual leave as well as parental leave supporting a healthy work-life balance.


Indicative net salary sample calculation AD9/1:
a)    Staff member (single) in receipt of expatriation allowance (16%): EUR 8,249.47 
b)    Staff member with two dependent children in their custody in receipt of expatriation allowance (16%): EUR 10,303.74


The above information is indicative and for information purposes only. It is merely meant to give an indication of your possible net salary in light of the currently applicable amounts of the related allowances and the level of taxation. It has no legal value and no rights can be derived from it.  

The information is based on figures applicable as of July 2020. 


Terms and conditions

Contract of employment

The successful candidate will be recruited in the type of post Head of Unit or equivalent, grade AD9 pursuant to Article 2(f) CEOS and Annex I EUSR.


The initial contract will be concluded for a period of 5 years (full-time – 40 hours a week). The contract may be renewed only once, in principle, for a period of 4 years. 


The overall duration of the contracts on restricted posts of Europol staff members will be taken into account if they are successful in the selection procedure.  


Conditions of engagement

Before the employment contract is concluded by Europol, the successful candidate will have to:

  • declare any conflict of interest;
  • undergo a pre-employment medical examination to confirm that he/she is physically fit to perform the duties pertaining to the post or, alternatively, receive the confirmation from Europol that he/she fulfils the conditions laid down in the Decision of the Deputy Executive Director of the Capabilities Directorate on the pre-employment medical examination available on Europol’s website;
  • in case of candidates for restricted posts (including restricted - Annex II posts) who had indicated membership of a competent authority in one of the Member States, provide confirmation of his/her membership of a competent authority in one of the Member States within the meaning of the Article 2(a) of the Europol Regulation.

The place of employment will be The Hague, The Netherlands. 

For further information on terms and conditions, please consult the EUSR/CEOS available on Europol’s website.


Security screening and certificate of good conduct
Candidates who have been recruited to a post at Europol are required to furnish a valid certificate of good conduct before the start of their employment. The certificate of good conduct must be provided to Europol prior to the signature of the employment contract. The certificate of good conduct must be issued by the relevant authorities of the country of nationality of the candidate and must not be older than three months at the time of submission to Europol. Europol reserves the right not to proceed with the signature of the contract based on the content of the certificate or if the candidate fails to provide the certificate to Europol.


The certificate of good conduct does not substitute a valid security clearance required for all Europol staff at the level indicated in the vacancy notice. Failure to obtain the requisite security clearance before the expiration of the probationary period may be cause for termination of the employment contract.


Candidates who currently hold a valid security clearance at the level indicated in the vacancy notice or above do not need to obtain a certificate of good conduct or a new security clearance and must provide a copy of the current security clearance certificate to Europol prior to the signature of the employment contract. Europol shall verify and confirm the continued validity of the security clearance. In case Europol determines that the security clearance is not valid, the candidate will be required to provide a valid certificate of good conduct prior to the signature of the employment contract. Europol may at any time terminate the employment contract if the result of the security screening is not positive and the necessary clearance level is not granted or extended. 


The requested level of security clearance for this post is: SECRET UE/EU SECRET.


Additional information

Probation period

Engagement for this post is subject to the successful completion of a probationary period of 9 months. 

Europol reserves the right to terminate the contract of employment during or at the end of the probation period in accordance with Article 14 of CEOS.


Trial period
All newly appointed heads of unit shall serve a management trial period of nine months as a ‘probationer head of unit’, unless they have already successfully passed such a management trial period in a previous function in the EU institutions as referred to in Article 1(a), paragraph 2, of the EUSR.

This trial period shall provide a formal opportunity to make a definite judgement as to whether the temporary staff has the necessary managerial ability and can remain in this function. 


Privacy Notice
Regulation (EU) 2018/1725 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2018 on the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data by the Union institutions, bodies, offices and agencies and on the free movement of such data, and repealing Regulation (EC) No 45/2001 and Decision No 1247/2002/EC, applies to the processing of personal data carried out in the process of selection and recruitment of staff at Europol, following the application of this Regulation to all administrative personal data held by Europol in accordance with Article 46 of the Europol Regulation.

For additional information, please consult the applicable privacy notice inserted in the EUROPOL RECRUITMENT GUIDELINES available on Europol’s website.


Statutory obligations upon leaving the service
Pursuant to Article 16 of the EUSR, EU officials and, by analogy, temporary agents, continue to be bound by the duty to behave with integrity and discretion as regards the acceptance of certain appointments or benefits after leaving the service. Those staff members intending to engage in an occupational activity within two years of leaving the service shall inform their institution, so that it may take an appropriate decision in that respect. In cases where the intended activity is related to the work carried out by the staff member during the last three years of service and could lead to a conflict with the legitimate interests of the institution, the decision to be taken may include forbidding the staff member from undertaking it or giving its approval subject to any conditions it thinks fit.


Main dates
Publication date: 17 November 2021
Deadline for application: 05 January 2022, 23:59 Amsterdam Time Zone
Recruitment procedure: January/February 2022


Application process and selection procedure    
Please refer to the EUROPOL RECRUITMENT GUIDELINES available on Europol’s website for further details on the application process and the selection procedure. 


Contact details
For further details on the application process please call +31 (0) 70 353 1146 or +31 (0) 70 353 1154.