Computing Fellowship: Software Engineer (CMS Services Monitoring and Big Data Analysis)

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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

Diversity has been an integral part of CERN's mission since its foundation and is an established value of the Organization.

Job Description

You will be part of the team responsible for the data processing software and computing infrastructure of the CMS experiment. In particular, you will belong to the team responsible for the monitoring infrastructure, an essential activity across most CMS computing areas.

You migrate the existing and desired monitoring capabilities in these various areas to use the next generation of monitoring infrastructure at CERN, which is based on industry standard Big Data technologies such as Kafka, InfluxDB, HDFS, ApacheSpark, ElasticSearch, Grafana and Kibana. Some of CMS operational monitoring tools have already migrated to such technology and we have an ongoing development project for the others. Primary responsibilities will be to run the services that CMS is developing to collect and feed data to the CERN infrastructure and to build and maintain the needed Grafana or Kibana dashboards. You will learn enough details to be able to transfer knowledge of these new methods to the operations staff at large. You will be using the monitoring tools to understand issues and features of the CMS Computing and autonomously improve the tools to facilitate operations understanding and debugging. There will be ample opportunities for showing creativity and initiative in this process and even contribute to the development of specific solutions.

You will take part in all aspects of the devops process, specifically:

  • Close cooperation with CERN monitoring team to setup, debug, troubleshoot CMS monitoring dashboards;
  • Code programming in Python, PySpark, Unix shell, etc.;
  • Setup and maintenance of Grafana/Kibana dashboards based on ElasticSearch, Prometheus, VictoriaMetrics data-sources;
  • Setup and maintenance CMS Monitoring alerts based on Grafana and AlertManager;
  • Maintenance of CMS Monitoring cluster and CMS Monitoring VMs;
  • Work on resolution of CMS Monitoring tickets.


Eligibility criteria:

  • You are a national of a CERN Member or Associate Member State;
  • You have a Bachelor or Master’s degree in Computer Science, Software Development or related fields;
  • You have no more than 4 years’ experience after completing your highest diploma.

Essential skills and experience:

  • Good communication skills;
  • Solving problems skills;
  • Solid knowledge of Unix/Linux operating system(s);
  • Experience in UNIX shell scripting (bash, sed, awk);
  • Proficiency in Python programming language.

Desired technical skills:

  • Experience in monitoring tools such as ElasticSearch/Kibana, Grafana, Prometheus;
  • Experience in managing ticketing systems and computing service support
  • Knowlegde of PySpark, HDFS eco-system; 
  • Experience in containerization technologies (docker, kubernetes).

Please note that CERN Staff members are not eligible to apply for a Fellowship.

Additional Information

CERN would very much like to benefit from your expertise, commitment and passion.  

In return, CERN will provide you with:

  • An employment contract for between six months (minimum) up to a maximum of 36 months.
  • A stipend ranging from 5,281 to 6,558 Swiss Francs per month (net of tax).
  • Coverage by CERN’s comprehensive health scheme (for yourself, your spouse and children), and membership of the CERN Pension Fund.
  • Depending on your individual circumstances: an installation grant, family, child and infant allowances as well as travel expenses to and from Geneva.
  • 2.5 days of paid leave per month.

Your Life @CERN

Find out more here:

This is how you can apply:

You will need the following documents to complete your application:

  • A CV.
  • A scanned PDF of your most recent relevant qualification.

We recommend to add two recent letters of recommendation, giving an overview of your academic and/or professional achievements. You can upload these letters at the time of application if you have them to hand. You will also be provided with a link as soon as you have submitted your application to forward to your referees to upload their letters confidentially. Please note this must be done before the closing date.

All applications should reach us no later than 5 April 2020.

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.

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Geneva, GE, CH

Genève , Switzerland