Computing Engineer

23 Mar 2018
End of advertisement period
20 Apr 2018
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time


Computer Hardware Engineer in the Information Technology Department (IT), Computing Facilities Group (CF), Facility Planning and Procurement Section (FPP)

You will oversee the installation, testing and support of large number of servers and disk storage enclosures for the Worldwide Large Hadron Collider (LHC) Computing Grid Tier-0 centre at CERN as well as for the many services run by other groups in CERN IT. Deep analysis of hardware related problems with suppliers and manufacturers as well as the benchmarking of new hardware products will be part of your activities.

You will join:

  • The Facility Planning and Procurement (FPP) Section, which deals with the procurement of equipment for the Computer Centre and associated Computing Facilities, including the related validation activities, as well as planning the needs of procurement and retirements. It also maintains an up-to-date hardware inventory for equipment installed in the centralized computing facility.

More information on the Computing Facilities Group can be found at:

More information on the IT Department can be found at:


As a Computer Hardware Engineer in the Facility Planning and Procurement (FPP) Section, you will be given responsibility for installation, testing and hardware support of servers and storage system hardware in the CERN data centres. The function may also include providing hardware support to experiments and other departments with similar equipment.

In particular, you will:

  • Analyse user and service needs and recommend appropriate hardware.
  • Commission hardware and support peripherals by recording, analysing and verifying test data and ensure that they meet specifications and requirements, as well as current and forecast needs in a cost effective manner.
  • Monitor the correct functioning of equipment, following up on hardware incidents and investigating hardware technology problems, enhancing the management and monitoring and analysing performance issues.
  • Contribute to and support the section's software developments for automation of burn-in/acceptance and hardware monitoring sensors as well as the new automation framework for preparing hardware production allocations.
  • Problem management of hardware related incidents and follow up with contractor and manufacturers as appropriate.
  • Perform a regular market watch and meet with engineers from major IT manufacturer to follow market developments and new trends in the area of IT servers and storage technologies and evaluate their relevance to CERN.


Master's degree or PhD or equivalent relevant experience in the field of engineering, computer science, physics, mathematics or closely related field.

Experience and competencies

The experience required for this post is:

  • Extensive experience with Linux and shell scripting.
  • Demonstrated experience with Python programming language.
  • Demonstrated experience with Windows.
  • Demonstrated experience with server hardware (x86 processor architecture, memory, BIOS), interconnect (Ethernet, Infiniband, Omnipath) and types of storage drives (S-ATA, SAS, NVMe).
  • Demonstrated experience with IPMI, SMART and SNMP.

The technical competencies required for this post are:

  • Problem management: perform analysis of hardware related incidents and repair logs to detect, diagnose, classify and prioritize recurring problems.
  • Emerging technology monitoring: track computer hardware and software technologies, in particular from intel, and try to match with potential usage at CERN.
  • User relationship management: establish and maintain regular contacts with end-users in LHC experiments and other collaborations.
  • Technical advice and guidance: assist users and service experts with optimal choice and use of hardware.
  • Systems installation/decommissioning: take responsibility for installation projects, providing effective team leadership, including information flow to and from the IT service.

The behavioural competencies required for this post are:

  • Managing self: working well autonomously; taking on activities and tasks without prompting; remaining objective, focussed and productive in a stressful environment; focusing on solutions rather than problems.
  • Communicating effectively: providing others with timely information; delivering presentations in a structured and clear way; adjusting style and content to the audience; responding calmly and confidently to questions; leveraging support networks across the organization.
  • Working in teams: working well in groups and readily fitting into a team; participating fully and taking an active role in team activities; building and maintaining constructive and effective work relationships; gaining trust and collaboration from others.
  • Solving problems: identifying, defining and assessing problems, taking action to address them; finding the information needed to solve problems; making objective judgments based on all the facts available; adopting a pragmatic approach; understanding the value of adopting generic rather than 'gold -plated' technical solutions.
  • Demonstrating flexibility: being willing to work on different projects simultaneously; readily accepting new tasks or work/projects.

The language competencies required are:

  • Spoken and written English: ability to draw-up technical specifications and/or scientific reports, and/or to make oral presentations.
  • Basic knowledge of French language or an undertaking to acquire it rapidly.

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 23.04.2018.

By applying here, you allow CERN to consider your application for any position it considers relevant with respect to your profile. Please ensure you update your profile regularly with any relevant information and that you inform the recruitment service if you wish your file to be removed from the database.

Note on Employment Conditions

We offer a limited-duration contract for a period of 5 years. Limited-duration contracts shall terminate by default on their date of expiry.

Subject to certain conditions, holders of limited-duration contracts may apply for an indefinite position.

These functions require:

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

Read more about employment conditions

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