Executive Director

Paris, Ile-de-France (FR)
Dependant on experience
21 Sep 2020
05 Oct 2020
Contract Type
Contract / Interim
English, French
  1. The Authority

ESMA is an independent Paris-based EU Authority. ESMA’s mission is to enhance investor protection and promote stable and orderly financial markets. This mission is derived from ESMA’s founding Regulation and encompasses three objectives:

  • Investor protection: to have the needs of financial consumers better served and to reinforce their rights as investors while acknowledging their responsibilities;
  • Orderly markets: to promote the integrity, transparency, efficiency, and well-functioning of financial markets and robust market infrastructures; and
  • Financial stability: to strengthen the financial system in order to be capable of withstanding shocks and the unravelling of financial imbalances while fostering economic growth.

ESMA achieves these objectives through four activities: (i) assessing risks to investors, markets and financial stability, (ii) completing a single rulebook for EU financial markets; (iii) promoting supervisory convergence; and (iv) directly supervising specific financial entities.

For further information, please refer to ESMA’s website: http://www.esma.europa.eu

  1. Job framework and profile

ESMA is organising a selection procedure for the post of ESMA Executive Director. The Executive Director is a full-time independent professional, member of ESMA staff, based in Paris (France). He/she is responsible for the day-to-day management of ESMA and for setting and executing ESMA’s work programme.

He/she will be accountable to the ESMA Board of Supervisors and its Chair in particular, and report to the Board of Supervisors on an on-going basis on the development of the ESMA activities. The Executive Director's term of office shall be five years and may be extended once.

Main duties:

The ESMA Executive Director will be responsible for the tasks laid down in the Regulation establishing ESMA, in particular:

  • The management of the Authority and preparing the work of the Management Board;
  • Preparing a multi-annual work programme and each year a work programme for the following year;
  • Implementing the annual work programme of the Authority under the guidance of the Board of Supervisors and under the control of the Management Board;
  • Drawing up a preliminary draft budget of the Authority and implementing the budget of the Authority, in full compliance with EU financial regulations;
  • Managing the ESMA human resources;
  • Preparing each year a draft annual report; and
  • Taking the necessary measures, notably the adoption of internal administrative
    instructions and the publication of notices, to ensure the functioning of the Authority, in accordance with the ESMA Regulation Regulation.
  1. Professional qualifications and other requirements

A. Eligibility criteria

To be considered eligible, candidates must satisfy all the eligibility criteria listed below, by the deadline for submitting applications:

  • Have at least a level of education which corresponds to completed university studies of four years attested by a diploma, and after having obtained the diploma, fifteen (15) years of proven professional experience


  • Have at least a level of education which corresponds to completed university studies of three years attested by a diploma, and after obtained the diploma, sixteen (16) years of proven professional experience;
  • Be a national of a Member State of the European Union;
  • Enjoy full rights as a citizen;
  • Have fulfilled any obligations imposed by the applicable laws concerning military service;
  • Have a thorough knowledge of one of the languages of the European Union
    and a satisfactory knowledge of another language of the European Union;
  • Be physically fit to perform the duties linked to the post;
  • Be able to complete the full five-year-mandate before reaching retirement age.

B. Selection criteria


Applications which fulfil the above Eligibility criteria (part A) will be assessed and scored against the Essential requirements (part B.1). Candidates who do not meet all of the Essential requirements (part B.1) will be excluded from the selection process.

Candidates, who meet all of the Essential requirements (part B.1), will be assessed and scored against the Advantageous requirements (part B.2). Within this comparative evaluation of applications, up to eight (8) best candidates who obtain the highest scores will be invited for interviews with the Selection Board.

B.1. Essential requirements

  • At least fifteen (15) years of experience (acquired after the required level of education, see part 3A), of which at least five (5) years at a senior position in the area of ESMA’s activities;
  • Experience in a managerial role with a high level of responsibility for at least 5 years;
  • Excellent written and spoken English.

B.2. Advantageous requirements

Thorough knowledge of and proven experience in financial markets, financial regulation and/or supervision/oversight of securities markets at national, EU or international level; Thorough understanding of the EU Institutions, EU decision-making processes, EU and international activities of relevance to ESMA; Proven capacity to take decisions, both at strategic and operational level; Experience of budgetary, financial and/or human resources management in a national, EU and/or international context; Ability to lead and motivate a team including technical, administrative and support staff; Work experience in a multicultural environment; and Motivation for the advertised position.

B.3. Supplementary requirements

Excellent communication and presentation skills with the ability to communicate clearly and present complex subjects simply, both orally and in writing, whether in public or in meetings with internal or external stakeholders; Excellent interpersonal skills, including the capacity to deal and negotiate with high level governmental representatives as well as financial market participants; Strong sense of responsibility, integrity, initiative, self-motivation and commitment to work in the public interest and serve the EU as a whole.


Candidates invited (up to 8) to the interviews will be informed (in the invitation letter) of the composition of the Selection Board. The candidates will be assessed during the interview against all selection criteria (parts B1 & B2 & B3).

As a result of the interviews, up to five candidates will be included in the reserve list and be invited for an one-day assessment centre, followed by an interview by the ESMA Board of Supervisors.

This selection procedure is the basis for the establishment of the reserve list. Inclusion on the reserve list does not guarantee the appointment. Applicants should note that the reserve list may be made public, once it has been adopted by the Selection Board.

The Selection Board’s work and deliberations are strictly confidential and any contact with its members is strictly forbidden. Any contact made by the candidates or third parties in order to influence the Members of the Selection Board in relation to the selection constitutes grounds for disqualification from the selection procedure.

As a next step, the shortlisted candidates (up to five) will be invited to give a presentation on a pre-defined topic (followed by an interview) by the ESMA Board of Supervisors.

The presentations and the interviews will take place on the same day. The topic of the presentation will be communicated to the shortlisted candidates in the invitation for the interview with the Board of Supervisors.

The Executive Director shall be appointed by the Board of Supervisors, after confirmation by the European Parliament. The envisaged start date of the contract is 1 May 2021.

Candidates may be required to undergo further interviews and/or tests in addition to those indicated above.

  1. Ethics obligations

See the vacancy notice.

  1. How to apply

Candidates must apply by sending the following documents, by the specified deadline, to vacancies@esma.europa.eu

  • The application must include: CV (European format) and motivation letter in English (working language of ESMA);
  • Application documents must be marked accordingly with the reference number of the vacancy notice (see templates below).

CV in the European format, saved as:

ESMA_2020_VAC10_AD14_FAMILY NAME_First name_CV

Motivation letter of no more than 2 pages, explaining the interest and motivation of the candidate for this particular post, saved as:

ESMA_2020_VAC10_AD14_FAMILY NAME_First name_Motivation letter          

Indication in the subject line of the email:

ESMA_2020_VAC10_AD14_FAMILY NAME_First name              

Application documents must be completed in English. In order to be considered, applications must be received by 23:59:59 CET on the closing date. We advise candidates to submit their applications well ahead of the deadline, in order to avoid potential problems.

Please consult the Candidates Guidelines for instructions on completing your application.

All correspondence will take place by email, so candidates should ensure that the email address is correct and that it is checked regularly.

Applicants will be assessed on the basis of the eligibility and selection criteria specified in the vacancy notice (as explained in part 3) and these must be met by the deadline for submitting applications.

  1. Summary of conditions of employment
  • Successful external candidates may be offered an employment contract for five years as a temporary agent 2(a) with one possible extension.
  • Successful external candidates will be recruited in the grade and classified in step 1 or 2.


 Minimum requirements for classification in step

(required level of university studies + minimum number of years of experience after university graduation)

Monthly net salary without allowances

Monthly net salary, including specific/family allowances

AD14 step 1

4 years’ university degree + 15 years’ experience

11,750 €

16,360 €

AD14 step 2

4 years’ university degree + 21 years’ experience

12,130 €

16,870 €

Financial conditions

  • As ESMA Executive Director, the successful candidate shall be entitled to receive a managerial allowance (4.2% of the basic salary) subject to completing successfully the 9-month trial period;
  • The salaries paid by ESMA are those applicable to all EU staff members.
    They are subject to the correction coefficient for France (currently 117.7%).
  • Salaries are subject to a Union tax deducted at source and are exempt from national taxation.
  • Depending on the individual family situation and the place of origin, the successful jobholder may be entitled to: expatriation allowance (16% of the basic salary), household allowance, dependent child allowance, education allowance, pre-school allowance, installation allowance, reimbursement of removal costs, initial temporary daily subsistence allowance, and other benefits.

Leave, Pension and Sickness Insurance

  • Annual leave entitlement of two days per calendar month plus additional days for age, grade, 2.5 days home leave if applicable, and in addition on average 17 ESMA holidays per year;
  • EU Pension Scheme (after 10 years of service);
  • EU Joint Sickness and Insurance Scheme (JSIS), accident and occupational disease coverage, unemployment and invalidity allowance and insurance, and
  • General and applicable professional training, plus professional development opportunities.

For more information, please refer to Careers’ page of ESMA: https://www.esma.europa.eu/about-esma/careers