Software Engineer for data distribution and storage (IT-ST-AD-2019-97-LD)

  • Geneva, Switzerland
  • Contract

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


Work with us to extend the data transfer system of the LHC (Large Hadron Collider) which connects CERN with its international partners. CERN is the birthplace of the World Wide Web and one of the world leading laboratories for particle physics. Join the Storage Group in CERN's IT Department as a Software Engineer for a unique challenge as the next step in your career. CERN, take part!

CERN's Storage Group is responsible for enabling data access for the laboratory and most notably to archive, long-term preserve and distribute LHC data to a worldwide scientific community. Today we operate a heterogeneous disk/tape system, with several large EOS disk farms and a Ceph infrastructure. In total the group handles more than 300 petabytes of data across about 2,000 data servers (60,000 disks) and 35,000 high-capacity tapes. CERN's storage systems are continuously evolved to adapt to changing user's needs with respect to functionality and performance and to further reduce their operational costs at CERN and its partner institutions.

More information on the IT Department is at:


The selected candidate will join the activities of the Analytics and Design (AD) section of the Storage (ST) group. As a Software Engineer for data distribution and storage, you will:

  • Develop the data transfer system implementation for CERN and WLCG experiments.
  • Support the data transfer services (user support and incident response) including the participation of on- call duties.
  • Maintain/improve service documentation (procedures, regular reports, incident analysis and user documentation) together with other members of the AD section.
  • Contribute actively to the evolution of the CERN data management services (service evolution, service or data migration).


Master's degree or equivalent relevant experience in the field of software engineering or a related field.


The candidate should have demonstrated practical experience in at least some of the following areas:

  • In-depth experience in Object-oriented software design on Linux and implementation in C++.
  • Practical experience with development, testing and debugging of distributed systems.
  • Practical experience with scripting in Python.

The following additional experience would be an asset:

  • Distributed trust systems and public key infrastructures.
  • Current networking and storage technologies such as software defined networking and distributed/cloud storage systems.
  • Database development (with MySQL or similar).
  • Cluster-wide configuration and deployment tools such as Puppet, Docker/Kubernetes.

Technical competencies:

  • Development of system software (drivers, system configuration and monitoring, etc.): masters state of the art software development tools.
  • Testing, diagnosing and optimization of software: analytic skills to identify and resolve service problems at CERN or partner sites.
  • Re-use, refactoring, integration and porting of existing software
  • Knowledge and application of software life-cycle tools and procedures
  • Architecture and design of ICT systems: good understanding of data management workflows in distributed scientific projects.

Behavioural competencies:

  • Achieving results: delivering prompt and efficient service taking into account customer needs.
  • Demonstrating flexibility: readily absorbing new techniques and working practices; proposing new or improved ways of working.
  • Solving problems: seeking and integrating other points of view when tackling an issue; consulting experts in the field and undertaking benchmarking.
  • Learning and sharing knowledge: seeking feedback from colleagues and other stakeholders about ways of increasing competence.

Language skills:

  • Good knowledge of English is required; ability to draw-up technical specifications and/or scientific reports and to make oral presentations.
  • Basic knowledge of French or an undertaking to acquire it 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 13.10.2019

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:

  • Work during nights, Sundays and official holidays, when required by the needs of the Organization.
  • Stand-by duty, when required by the needs of the Organization.

Job grade: 6-7

Job reference: IT-ST-AD-2019-97-LD

Benchmark Job Title: Computing Engineer

Please make sure you have all the documents needed to hand as you start your application, as once it is submitted, you will not be able to upload any documents or edit your application further

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