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Industrial Cost Auditor

Noordwijk-Binnen (Netherlands)

  • Organization: ESA - European Space Agency
  • Location: Noordwijk-Binnen (Netherlands)
  • Grade: A2/A4 - Grade band - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Accounting (Audit, Controlling)
    • Sustainable trade and development
  • Closing Date: 2021-01-19

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Vacancy in the Directorate of Ind., Proc. & Legal Serv..

ESA is an equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving diversity within the workforce and creating an inclusive working environment. For this purpose, we welcome applications from all qualified candidates irrespective of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, beliefs, age, disability or other characteristics. Applications from women are encouraged.


Industrial Cost Auditor

This post is classified A2-A4 on the Coordinated Organisations’ salary scale.

ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands  


Industrial Cost Auditor in the Industrial Audit Section, Industrial Auditing and Return Division, Industrial Policy and Auditing Department, Directorate of Industry, Procurement and Legal Services.

The industrial cost audit function is of vital importance for ESA. The Agency dispenses a large proportion of its annual budget in placing contracts with space sector contractors. It is important to ensure a proper return for its Member States' investments and to ensure value for money. The audit activity is an essential part of this process.

You will report to the Head of the Industrial Audit Section and be responsible for general industrial cost analysis and auditing-related activities concerning the ESA procurement process.


Provision of high-quality audit services that achieve cost-effectiveness and value creation for the ESA procurement process with transparent and cost-effective deployment of public resources in industry via ESA programmes.

You will, in direct contact with industry working under contract with ESA, carry out the following:
• auditing, analysis and negotiation of hourly industrial labour rates and overheads, and of unit rates (such as facility charges) and other overheads, on the basis of detailed reviews carried out on industry’s costs structure and their accounting tools;
• auditing of direct expenditure on cost reimbursement contracts and/or co-funded contracts placed with industry including compliance with ESA rules;
• implementing financial viability audits on the basis of detailed reviews of industry’s financial data;
• auditing the nationality of the industrial firms concerned on the basis of established processes and criteria for nationality attribution;
• verifying industry’s cost accounting systems to ascertain compliance with generally accepted accounting principles and ESA rules.

Providing support to ESA programmes will involve:
• participation in tender evaluation boards and cost panels to analyse financial and cost-related aspects of industry proposals, supporting ESA’s programme directorates in direct negotiations with industry;
• implementing audits on industry to directly support programmes, including detailed analysis and review of industrial contractual documents;
• advising on financial matters e.g. currency exchange, price variation formulae, productivity, inflation, hourly rates, etc.

For relevant support services, duties will include:
• auditing in the framework of georeturn data verification;
• coordinating cost and audit activities with other national and international organisations;
• supporting day-to-day audit activities, including preparing concise, accurate documentation (e.g. audit reports, policies and processes), data analysis, information collection, etc.
• carrying out other relevant tasks/projects as requested of the Section.

You will interface with senior industry representatives, ESA and industry project management teams, ESA contract officers, ESA finance and cost engineer functions and the auditors of other national audit  authorities.

Technical competencies

Knowledge/Experience with accounting systems and tools
Knowledge/Experience with auditing
Analytical skills
Negotiation skills
Cost and financial/management accounting

Behavioural competencies

• Result Orientation
• Operational Efficiency
• Fostering Cooperation
• Relationship Management
• Continuous Improvement
• Forward Thinking


A Master’s degree in business administration, corporate finance and accounting or economics is required.

Additional requirements

Effective communication skills are of utmost importance due to the level of interfaces.
A minimum five years’ experience in auditing activities is required.
Experience in calculation methodologies of hourly labour/facility and overheads rates is preferred.
Readiness to travel frequently, as it is the nature of the job.

Other information

For behavioural competencies expected from ESA staff in general, please refer to the ESA Competency Framework.     

The working languages of the Agency are English and French. A good knowledge of one of these is required. Knowledge of another Member State language would be an asset.     

The Agency may require applicants to undergo selection tests.

The closing date for applications is 19 January 2021.

 At the Agency we value diversity and we welcome people with disabilities.  Whenever possible, we seek to accommodate individuals with disabilities by providing the necessary support at the workplace.  The Human Resources Department can also provide assistance during the recruitment process. If you would like to discuss this further please contact us at


Please note that applications are only considered from nationals of one of the following States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Canada, Latvia and Slovenia.

According to the ESA Convention the recruitment of staff must take into account an adequate distribution of posts among nationals of the ESA Member States. When short-listing for an interview, priority will first be given to internal candidates and secondly to external candidates from under-represented Member States. (

In accordance with the European Space Agency’s security procedures and as part of the selection process, successful candidates will be required to undergo basic screening before appointment. 

Recruitment will normally be at the first grade in the band (A2); however, if the candidate selected has little or no experience, the position may be filled at A1 level.

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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