European Patent Office (EPO)
Patent Examiners in ICT (The Hague/Munich)
European Patent Office (EPO)
The European Patent Office (EPO) is the second-largest European organisation, employing 7.000 staff from over 30 countries.
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Published: 19 days ago
Application deadline: Feb 09
Location: Munich, Germany
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Patent Examiners in ICT (The Hague/Munich)

Are you an engineer or a scientist interested in joining an international team of highly qualified staff at the forefront of technology? Do you want to see the latest inventions?

Then this professional opportunity is the right one for you!

The European Patent Office (EPO) - the second-largest European organisation, with 7 000 staff members and a self-financed annual budget of EUR 2bn - is looking for engineers and scientists interested in working as European patent examiners.

Our patent examiners are drawn from over 30 different European countries. They work at the cutting edge of technology, analysing the latest inventions in all kinds of technical fields in order to protect and promote innovation in Europe. Their daily work combines scientific expertise with analytical research and an eye for the legal aspects of intellectual property.

We are currently seeking materials scientists and chemical engineers to work in The Hague and Munich in


We have vacancies in each of the following technical fields:

  • Wireless networks
  • Data communication
  • Power management
  • Satellite systems
  • Line transmission systems
  • Computer and memory systems
  • Usage rights (e.g. toll systems, access control)
  • Multiple processing arrangements
  • Internet, web and database technologies
  • Distributed System Architecture
  • Operating systems (Linux OS, real-time software development, system administration)
  • Computing resource allocations (virtualization and cloud technologies, application load balancing solutions)
  • Software/Hardware integration and microprocessor architecture
  • Embedded system architectures, microprocessor architectures, multithreaded architectures
  • Real-time operating systems, software/hardware integration
  • Interrupt handling and peripheral programming
  • Data storage systems, sound processing in computers, print job handling
  • Information retrieval
  • Database technology
  • Computer systems based on biological models
  • Computer systems utilising knowledge based models
  • Learning machines
  • Quantum computers
  • Access control systems to restricted areas
  • Toll and parking systems
  • Monitoring systems (e.g. of functioning of a vehicle)
  • Voting systems
  • Handling, counting and testing of currency
  • Authentication, validation of valuable paper
  • Mechanical and administrative aspects of currency logistics

Are you an engineer or scientist in a field other than ICT? Please have a look at our various Patent examiner job openings:

Your key responsibilities

  • Carrying out patent examination from the search to the post-grant stage, and solving complex technical and legal problems in the process
  • Taking a broad perspective to identify solutions whilst ensuring the uniform and effective application of the EPC (European Patent Convention) and other legal texts
  • Creating and maintaining classification systems to ensure efficient and effective searching

What we expect from you

  • telecommunications or computer science, or alternatively in electronics, electromechanics, physics, mechanical engineering or mathematics, with several years of IT experience.
  • Generally, an excellent knowledge (at least C1) of one official language (English, French and German) and working knowledge (at least B2) of the other two. In exceptional cases, excellent knowledge (at least C1) of one official language and working knowledge (at least B2) of another. In such cases, the Office may also consider offering a fixed-term contract for up to three years, which could be converted into permanent employment upon meeting the language requirements
  • Work experience in industry is not essential, but would be advantageous
  • Citizenship of one of the member states of the European Patent Organisation

as well as the ability to

  • analyse technical and subject-specific information
  • retrieve technical information from databases and other sources
  • analyse and compare technical matter according to the legal provisions applicable
  • make decisions following the assessment of complex technical information, the application of legal requirements and the examination of parties' arguments
  • write clear and well-reasoned communications
  • interact with colleagues and applicants to process patent applications efficiently

What we offer you

  • Varied and interesting work requiring scientific expertise, analytical thinking and an interest in technology and intellectual property law, in a modern and truly international environment
  • A continuous training programme to develop your knowledge of the EPO's search tools, your technical knowledge and your legal expertise in intellectual property

Salary and benefits

The EPO offers competitive salaries, an excellent social package, and varied work in a modern international environment. The net (basic) monthly salary* for this vacancy ranges from EUR 5 317.77 to 7 575.35, depending on experience. In addition, depending on their personal circumstances, EPO staff may be entitled to relocation benefits and various allowances (e.g. household, dependant's, childcare, education, expatriation, installation and rent allowance).

Recruitment process

The process comprises a combination of various online tests (e.g. cognitive ability, personality, languages) and one or more Skype interviews. If successful, you will be invited to attend a selection event in Munich or The Hague. This event will involve one or more face-to-face interviews, supplemented as appropriate by additional technical, psychometric and/or language tests, and give you the opportunity to find out more about the EPO and the job of European patent examiner.

At the end of our selection process, we may place suitable candidates on a reserve list for a period of 12 months. The EPO may use the reserve list to fill vacant post with the same profile. However, being on a reserve list doesn't guarantee a job offer or imply any entitlement to employment at the EPO.

Our next selection events will take place in The Hague from 09.04.2018 to 13.04.2018 and in Munich from 23.04.2018 to 27.04.2018. As a general rule, you will be invited to the location (Munich or The Hague) for which your application is being considered.

The EPO is an equal opportunities employer and supports workforce diversity as a signatory to the Diversity Charter (Charta der Vielfalt) since 2010.
All applications for vacant positions will be welcomed and considered on the professional merits of the applicant against the role profile for the position regardless of nationality, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, parental responsibilities, age, religion or belief.

* after deduction of EPO internal tax and before deduction of staff contributions to the social-security and pension schemes.

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European Patent Office (EPO)
European Patent Office (EPO)
Location: Munich, Germany | Closing on Feb 09
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