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Industrial Automation Technician (BE-ICS-CE-2021-115-LD)

Geneva (Switzerland)

  • Organization: CERN - European Organization for Nuclear Research
  • Location: Geneva (Switzerland)
  • Grade: Grade 3 - Technical or Administrative roles - Only open to Nationals of all CERN Member States and Associate Member States - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Technology, Electronics and Mechanics
    • Sustainable trade and development
    • Engineering
    • Information Technology and Computer Science
    • Youth
    • Legal - Broad
  • Closing Date:

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Company Description

At CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, physicists and engineers are probing the fundamental structure of the universe. Using the world's largest and most complex scientific instruments, they study the basic constituents of matter - fundamental particles that are made to collide together at close to the speed of light. The process gives physicists clues about how particles interact, and provides insights into the fundamental laws of nature. Find out more on

Job Description


Would you like to design, develop, commission and troubleshoot industrial control systems for one of the world’s most complex technical instruments? We use an original approach based on industrial standards and the latest technologies. Be a part of something bigger; CERN, take part.

We are looking for a technician with a versatile set of automation skills applied to industrial control systems. You should feel comfortable in the design and development of turn-key PLC-based control systems as well as troubleshooting and supporting CERN-wide PLC users.

The ability to understand the behaviour of complex systems and to quickly acquire and apply necessary knowledge to intervene, are key skills for this job.

You will join:

  • The Beams Department (BE) in charge of the exploitation of the largest accelerator complex and its technical infrastructure.
  • The Control Engineering Section within The Industrial Control Systems Group (ICS), whose activities include the engineering and support of control systems and automation technologies for the LHC and the high-energy physics experiments.

You will benefit from:

  • The opportunity to broaden your knowledge and experience into new areas and discover a domain where excellence is the key driving factor.
  • Specific training and support for professional development to foster your skills and develop your talents.


As an Industrial Automation Technician in the Industrial Control Systems group (ICS) and the Control Engineering section (CE), you will be in charge of the design, development, commissioning and support of industrial control systems for a diversity of industrial installations (e.g. HVAC, cooling, gas, industrial machinery). The scope of this activity includes, both new projects and the consolidation and the renovation of the controls of existing installations.

Your main tasks will include:

  • Contributing to the requirements capturing from field experts and compilation of all the relevant documents.
  • Designing PLC-based control systems for industrial installations (e.g. cooling, ventilation, motion, interlocks, safety instrumented systems).
  • Programming the PLCs, integrate industrial fieldbuses and configuring the SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) and/or local touch panels of the control systems.
  • Participating in the commissioning by managing the tests on platform (FAT) and in situ (SAT).
  • Performing the maintenance of the designed control systems.
  • Supporting the CERN users of the controls systems and technologies described above.


Higher technical diploma or equivalent relevant experience in the field of Automation, Computing or a related field.


  • Experience in PLC-based automation mainly in continuous process control (e.g. HVAC, Cooling) or in related fields as batch control, safety instrumented systems or interlocks.
  • Extensive experience in the design, development, commissioning and maintenance of PLC-based control systems.
  • Demonstrated experience in Configuring Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems. 
  • Proven experience in commissioning and maintenance of automation equipment: factory and Site Acceptance Tests.
  • Experience in fault diagnostic interventions in large and complex systems.
  • Experience with electrical cabling and layouts.

Technical competencies:

  • Installation, operation and maintenance of industrial data-acquisition, monitoring and control systems: configuration of SCADA systems.
  • Design of PLC based control systems (process control, interlocks, safety).
  • Configuration and programming of PLC and fieldbus systems: IEC-61131-3 standard, Step7, TIA portal, UNITY, Control expert, Profibus, Profinet, Ethernet/IP.
  • Testing procedures (Factory and Site Acceptance Tests).
  • Application and Technology support: pLC and related technologies technical support.

Behavioural competencies:

  • Achieving results: Having a structured and organised approach towards work; being able to set priorities and plan tasks with results in mind. Delivering high quality work on time and fulfilling expectations.
  • Managing self: Working well autonomously; taking on activities and tasks without prompting.
  • Demonstrating flexibility: Readily accepting new tasks or work/projects. Adapting quickly and resourcefully to shifting priorities and requirements.
  • Communicating effectively: Providing others with timely information. Ensuring that information, procedures and decisions are appropriately documented.

Language skills:

Spoken and written English or French: ability to draw up technical specifications and to compile technical reports in at least one of the two languages and an undertaking to acquire the other rapidly.

Additional Information

Eligibility and closing date:

Diversity has been an integral part of CERN's mission since its foundation and is an established value of the Organization. Employing a diverse workforce is central to our success. We welcome applications from all Member States and Associate Member States.

This vacancy will be filled as soon as possible, and applications should normally reach us no later than 12 midday CEST 16th November 2021. 

Employment Conditions

Contract type: Limited duration contract (5 years). Subject to certain conditions, holders of limited-duration contracts may apply for an indefinite position.

These functions require:

  • Participation in a regular stand-by duty, including nights, Sundays and official holidays.
  • Work in Radiation Areas.
  • Interventions in underground installations.
  • A valid driving licence is required.

Job grade: 3-4

Job reference: BE-ICS-CE-2021-115-LD

Benchmark Job Title: Computing Technician

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