Data Centre Engineer (BE-CSS-ISA-2021-7-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


Does the idea of developing the mission-critical computing hardware infrastructure of the Accelerator complex of CERN, the largest particle physics laboratory in the world, and providing operational support attract you? Take responsibility in the specification, configuration, asset management and operational support of the CERN Control Centre computing infrastructure. 

You will join:

  • The Beams department responsible for the operation and performance of the entire CERN Accelerator complex, including the injector complex and their experimental areas, and the LHC.
  • The Controls Software and Services (CSS) group which provides solutions for the control and monitoring of all of the CERN particle accelerators, their transfer lines, associated experimental areas and various supporting technical infrastructure services.
  • The Infrastructure and System Administration (ISA) section in charge of all system administration activities, provisioning and operation of the underlying computing infrastructure for the CERN Control Centre. The CSS group also acts as the interface between the Accelerator & Technology Sector (ATS) and the Information Technology (IT) department for the provision and evolution of IT infrastructure and services within the control system.


As a Data Centre Technical Engineer in the BE-CSS-ISA Section, you will participate in the engineering processes involved in the operation and evolution of the CERN Accelerator control centre.

Your main activities will consist of:

  • Ensuring the 365 24/7 operational performance, availability and stability of the installed infrastructure, with a special emphasis on the CERN Accelerator Data Centre server platforms, used for the on-line control of the CERN Accelerator complex.
  • Taking responsibility for the following engineering processes:
    • Requirements capture and analysis with CERN stakeholders (operations and equipment groups of the Accelerator sector).
    • Technical specification and procurement processes with industry partners and the CERN procurement service.
    • Qualification and integration of hardware solutions within the CERN Linux-based operational environment.
    • Organization and supervision of hardware installations and upgrades.
    • Asset management (stock management, statistical analysis, upgrade policy).
    • Technical evolution of the infrastructure (bare metal, clustering technologies and containers, disaster recovery strategies).
    • Operational support, diagnostics and troubleshooting.
    • Participation to best-effort support outside normal working hours.


Bachelor's degree or equivalent relevant experience in the field of IT distributed computing systems or a related field.


  • Proven experience with high-availability commercial server platforms and their associated services and peripherals (water-cooled enclosures, multi-core architectures, distributed storage systems, networking, etc.).
  • Experience with the technical infrastructure of a Data Centre, asset management, procurement, organisation and supervision of the work with contractors and partners (cooling and ventilation, networking, electricity).
  • Demonstrated experience in the 24/7 Operations of large Data Centres (requirements capture, load balancing, clustering, security, back-ups, monitoring and diagnostics).

Technical competencies:

  • Administration of computing systems.
  • Development, review and plan computing and communication infrastructure evolution (campus, accelerator complex and experimental areas).
  • Installation, operation and maintenance (preventive and corrective) of computing systems.
  • Knowledge of operating systems: Linux (RHEL/CENTos).
  • Development of system software (drivers, system configuration and monitoring, etc.). AMT, IPMI, etc.

Behavioural competencies:

  • Working in teams: Supporting and acting in accordance with team decisions; accepting joint responsibility for team successes and shortcomings. Building and maintaining constructive and effective work relationships. Cooperating constructively with others in the pursuit of team goals; balancing personal goals with team goals.
  • Achieving results: Defining clear objectives, milestones and deliverables before initiating work/ project. Having a structured and organised approach towards work; being able to set priorities and plan tasks with results in mind. Delivering prompt and efficient service taking into account customer needs.
  • Communicating effectively: Providing others with timely information. Ensuring that information, procedures and decisions are appropriately documented. Expressing opinions, ideas and suggestions with conviction and in a logical/structured manner; keeping to the point.
  • Building relationships: showing courtesy and consideration in dealings with others.

Language skills:

Spoken and written English: ability to draw up technical texts and communicate with partners in English. Willingness to rapidly learn French. 

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 08.03.2021 @ 12:00

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

Job grade: 4-5

Job reference: BE-CSS-ISA-2021-7-LD

Benchmark Job Title: Computing Technical Engineer

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