HR Officer
Location:EMBL-EBI Hinxton near Cambridge, UK
Staff Category:Staff member
Contract Duration:3 years
Grading:4 or 5 (monthly salary starting at £2,368 after tax). For more information about pay and benefits click here
Closing Date:25th February 2018
Reference Number:EBI_01132

Job Description

We are looking for a highly motivated HR officer who is excited by the challenge of providing an excellent HR service in a stimulating international environment, working for a world-leading scientific institute.

The European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) is part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), one of the most highly regarded scientific research organizations in the world. EMBL is a non-profit, intergovernmental organisation funded by 23 member states and two associate member states, and proud to be an equal-opportunity employer. We employ 1,500 members of personnel from over 70 nations based at the headquarters in Heidelberg (Germany) outstations in Grenoble (France), Hamburg (Germany), Hinxton (UK) and Monterotondo (Italy).

EMBL-EBI is a centre of excellence for research and services in bioinformatics. We are located on the attractive Wellcome Genome Campus near Cambridge in the UK, and our 630 staff are engineers, technical experts, scientists and other professionals from all over the world. This diversity, and the cooperative relationships between staff, their representatives and the HR function make EMBL-EBI a great place to work as a HR professional.

Reporting to the Senior HR Officer you will be working in a small operational HR team at EMBL-EBI alongside generalist colleagues. You will also be a member of the wider EMBL-EBI Administration team and the EMBL HR team, with close links to colleagues in EMBL headquarters in Heidelberg, Germany.

The main responsibilities of the role are

  • advise staff, supervisors and HR colleagues on pay and benefits
  • oversee monthly payroll preparation
  • handle claims for EMBL benefits – education grant, home leave and others
  • work closely with the respective HR responsible colleagues in the EMBL headquarters in Heidelberg, Germany to ensure consistency of practice, contribute to projects and cover for absence as required
  • Provide a full generalist and recruitment service to a few assigned groups and teams, including:
- advising on employment contracts and performance management and carrying out related tasks
- creating and maintaining HR and payroll records in SAP
- advising managers on recruitment and overseeing the selection process
- making employment offers and being the main point of contact for new joiners before they arrive
  • Contribute to the overall performance of the HR function by proposing solutions and participating in improvement projects and by liaising with other functions in the administration and external service suppliers
  • Actively build trust and rapport throughout EMBL-EBI in order to keep abreast of and be responsive to the concerns of both managers and staff

A full description of the role and duties is available here

Qualifications and Experience

This opportunity will suit a variety of HR backgrounds – for example you may be a generalist looking to develop further in the area of pay and benefits, or perhaps a compensation and benefits specialist keen to gain generalist experience.

A university degree and training in human resources management or equivalent and several years of experience are essential.

With a track record of delivering in multicultural environments you will also bring a conscientious attitude, high numerical accuracy and good organizational skills.

Strong interpersonal skills, the ability to work in a team and the desire to provide a high quality service for staff at all levels in the organisation are essential.

You will be able to identify and respond to priorities and work independently in your area of responsibility, while also supporting the team.

Candidates with experience of working outside their home country will be at an advantage.

Good computer skills including advanced Excel are required. Experience of working with SAP will be an advantage.

Excellent spoken and written English is essential and a good working knowledge of another European language will be an asset.

Specific knowledge of UK employment law and payroll administration are not required.


EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation. The remuneration package comprises a competitive salary, a comprehensive pension scheme and health insurance, educational and other family related benefits where applicable, as well as financial support for relocation and installation.

We have an informal culture, international working environment and excellent professional development opportunities but one of the really amazing things about us is the concentration of technical and scientific expertise – something you probably won’t find anywhere else.

If you’ve ever visited the campus you’ll have experienced first-hand our friendly, collegial and supportive atmosphere, set in the beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside. Our staff also enjoy excellent sports facilities including a gym, a free shuttle bus, an on-site nursery, cafés and restaurant and a library.

Application Instructions

To apply please submit a covering letter and CV, with two referees, through our online system.

Additional Information

Applications are welcome from all nationalities - visa information will be discussed in more depth with applicants selected for interview.

EMBL-EBI is committed to achieving gender balance and strongly encourages applications from women, who are currently under-represented at all levels. Appointment will be based on merit alone.

Please note that appointments on fixed term contracts can be renewed, depending on circumstances at the time of the review.

Applications will close at 23:00 GMT on the date listed above.