01.03.18

Job Applicants at the EPO Disappointed, Reference Made in Interview to Slavery

Posted in Europe, Patents at 2:17 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Glassdoor

Summary: Working conditions at the EPO, as well as recruitment standards, have taken a plunge under Battistelli and Bergot as head of Human Resources (HR)

LIFE at the EPO is hard; salary may be better framed as “compensation” because for many workers there’s neither pride nor thrill in the job. It isn’t scholarly but more like a production line and stress levels are very high. Notoriously so; and it gets worse over time with growing ‘production’ pressure.

Someone has just left the following comment in Kluwer Patent Blog:

Please accept as new year gift one more Russian word for your list:

gulag.

This is how we feel. Emprisoned and powerless in our (golden?) cages. Blindly undergoing useless restructuring (for example, in the next 3 months everyone will be moving office room at the EPO), scared to speak out for fear of retaliation (every month a list of colleagues who “end service” for no reason is published on our intranet ). Everyone wanting to listen and possibly publish our incredible stories having been silenced anyway.

Counting the days left (180) until “le roi” is gone. Hoping that we don’t end up with an “o rei” at his place.

Like we said before, it’s hard to believe in “instant impact” when Campinos comes; much of the same management and policies shall remain in place. Undoing these policies probably won’t even be on the agenda.

We have meanwhile heard from a reader about declining recruitment standards at the EPO; the HR department, led by Bergot, is struggling. Standards deteriorate as people lose interest in joining the EPO and many talented workers are leaving. This isn’t a theory/hypothesis but something that many insiders privately and publicly (albeit anonymously) talk about.

One such person told us: “Here are some of the last reviews that some applicants gave on the site Glassdoor.de (a job hunting site) about EPO after they had their experience. This is at present all the information I’ve got: they try to recruit and to keep an attractive profile as an employer, but their culture is too crooked to not show for what it is at some point.”

The reviews are largely negative. Most of the relevant answers are in English.

“In the links to further answers you can find also people showing surprise for the negative descriptions,” the person added, “but some other (more) actually confirming they have no surprise about that type of behaviour from EPO. Most answers and reviews are in English; only the site (in my case at least) has most descriptions of paragraphs and entries in German. You can set the language…”

Here are three in English, starting with the old one:

Application

“The procedure took more than 2 months. It took plance in January 2008 at EPO Munich

Interview talk

Intial interview was asking how I would interpret a chemical structure, is it new or not. If a knew a few pharmaceutical ingredients. Read a text in French/German and understand it. My french was a bit weak, but got a second HR interview. This was also ok, usual questions. Then had to wait 1.5 months, until I phoned them, then they said on the phone no…..strange!

Maybe at the time they could afford to turn people down. But now, in late 2017, here are the two reviews that are listed:

Application

Procedure took 6 weeks, talk held in EPO Munich.

Interview talk

The EPO selection process has 3 stages. Online test for personality and logic. Apparently personality does not really matter at this stage. Then skype meeting to discuss patent with your future coworker. Then you skype with an external worker which test your personality. Beware if you are a little bit creative of have a little bit too much of personality. They are looking for malleable people to follow their direction.Finally you get to meet the people in persons. This is when they almost harassed me and I was saved by another person who was in charge to check the interview process was fair. This job has nothing to do with innovation, you will get to scroll down and read a certain number of patents per day. They also are looking for very diligent people who will stay forever with them and follow whatever direction they are told. In my case I was applying for a certain technical field for which I got accepted and got the technical interview in another technical field. I had prepared the technical interview for weeks by learning the relevant vocabulary in the 3 languages and had a technical interview which had nothing to do with that. They suddenly to change the field without letting me know in advance. To me this was truly unprofessional. I had the same feeling of lack of professionalism when they invite me to come to the interview a week in advance but gave me half of the money to pay a plane ticket. I had to request more money and it worked and I can imagine some shy individual would not do so. Please ask for them to reimburse the full cost of the interview. In my case I would have paid about 1000euros out of pocket to come.

Finally the real live interview was shocking with references to slavery as a joke about the job and pushy personal comments.

Read that last sentence again.

Also this:

Application

I applied personally. The procedure took more than 3 months. Talk held in March 2017 at EPO The Hague (The Netherlands).

Interview talk

Quite long, although admin at the interview stage was adequate. Well…maybe if they didn’t come and pick me up from the gate as security didn’t inform them of my arrival. Interview panel of three people of which one was staff association. Chairman at the end started eating (this is how much respect a candidate gets). Questions unrelated to the job, at least for an HR post would expect most competency…

Competency in HR? Led by a person who leaped many pay grades presumably owing to family connections?

The EPO has a pattern of threatening people to remove texts the managers don’t like, so we’ve preserved the above (excluding what’s in German as this isn’t a German-speaking site, unlike the original). The responses to these seem to include actual EPO staff, maybe even the HR department (for example here). Words like “fake testimony” are being brought up; welcome to Trumpist ‘logic’…

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

This post is also available in Gemini over at:

gemini://gemini.techrights.org/2018/01/03/neue-bewertungen-epo/

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, March 03, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, March 03, 2021



  2. The Free Software Foundation Should Re-add Richard Stallman to the Board

    Dr. Richard Stallman is missed by many who perceive him to have been wrongly treated; putting Stallman back in the Board (at the very least) would help the image of the Free Software Foundation more than the newly-announced work with Community Consulting Teams of Boston



  3. Free Software Calling

    Fewer people are willing to "put up with the shit" given by so-called 'Big Tech', seeing that it's mostly about social control rather than enablement or emancipation



  4. Meme: EPO Management Totally Gets 'Tehc'

    The bestest patent office in the whole wide world is besting the “hey hi” (AI) cutting edge; don't worry about exam and certification integrity



  5. The EPO's Software Blunders Are Inevitable Outcome of Technically Clueless Management Which Grants Illegal Patents on Software

    The "clusterfuck" which the EPO has become is negatively affecting not only EPO staff but also stakeholders, who sink into depression and sometimes anger, even fury, at great expense to their health; this is how institutions die (for a quick but short money grab, a culmination of corruption which piggybacks half a century of goodwill gestures)



  6. Links 3/3/2021: OpenSUSE Leap 15.3 Beta, GNU Denemo 2.5, and NomadBSD 1.4

    Links for the day



  7. What Free Software Organisations Can Learn From Australia's Rape Crisis

    Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock



  8. Microsoft Weaponises (and Further Spreads) Racism to Distract From Its Own Incompetence (and 'Five Eyes' Collusion for Back Door Access)

    Racist Microsoft is at it again; we're meant to think that China is evil for doing exactly what the United States has been doing but more importantly we're told not to blame Microsoft for shoddy code and back doors (classic blame-shifting tactics and overt distortion of facts, as we saw in the wake of SolarWinds backdoors)



  9. GNU/Linux News Sites Need to Promote Software Freedom, Not Binary and Proprietary Blobs Merely Compiled for GNU/Linux

    There has been lots of proprietary fluff in GNU/Linux 'news' sites so far this week; it merits an explanation or clarification, e.g. why we should generally reject proprietary stuff and instead promote Free/libre alternatives



  10. Links 3/3/2021: OpenSSH 8.5 and Absolute64 20210302 Released

    Links for the day



  11. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, March 02, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, March 02, 2021



  12. Links 3/3/2021: IPFire 2.25 Core Update 154, Red Hat Satellite 6.8.4, Kiwi TCMS 10.0

    Links for the day



  13. Links 2/3/2021: KDE Plasma 5.21.2, Qt 6.1 Beta, Refund of Pre-installed Windows

    Links for the day



  14. 'GatoKeeper'/IP Kat (AstraZeneca) Still Suppressing and Censoring the Public Views or Internal EPO Talks About EPO Corruption

    The suppression of comments critical of the EPO‘s administration (especially corruption scandals surrounding António Campinos and Benoît Battistelli) is a real problem; those ought not be a taboo subject in comments (where bloggers used to speak about those issues openly and regularly)



  15. Pocock on Removing Cognitive Bias Around Consent

    Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock



  16. IRC Proceedings: Monday, March 01, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, March 01, 2021



  17. Links 2/3/2021: Maui 1.2.1, RSS Guard 3.9.0

    Links for the day



  18. ZDNet Really Hates Golang (Maybe Because Microsoft Does)

    The Golang programming language seems to be the target of intense FUD campaigns from sites connected to Microsoft, so it’s likely a bit of a Nemesis/endgame to Microsoft monoculture (unlike Rust, which Microsoft has already pocketed and is actively besieging to promote Microsoft monopoly and hardware monoculture)



  19. Links 1/3/2021: KStars 3.5.2, ET: Legacy 2.77, Flameshot 0.9

    Links for the day



  20. Five Years of António Campinos Coverage in Techrights (We Correctly Predicted His Presidency in March 2016)

    We've warned about António Campinos since March of 2016; well, António Campinos isn't just EPO President right now but he's also an oppressor who demonises the union of the EPO's staff



  21. In 2021 the EPO Works for Parasites Instead of Scientists (and It Cannot Even Hide That Anymore)

    Europe's second-largest institution is working for those who attack instead of create (or those who attack actual creators, with lousy and sketchy patents as ammunition)



  22. Links 1/3/2021: Manjaro ARM 21.02 and First Linux 5.12 RC Released

    Links for the day



  23. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, February 28, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, February 28, 2021



  24. On Gangstalking and Victim-Blaming

    Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock



  25. If the Web Can Be Increasingly Replaced (or Complemented) by Gemini and IPFS Etc., Then Large Monopolists Will Try to Dominate Those

    Monopolists and sociopaths won't be clapping and cheering for whatever stands a chance of replacing the Web (or Big Banks); if they ever embrace those replacements, it'll be to dominate and in turn undermine these



  26. Links 28/2/2021: Nitrux 1.3.8 and Kraft 0.96

    Links for the day



  27. Techrights Over 3 Internet Protocols and From the Command Line, Using Either Curl/Wget/Text Editor (Over WWW) or IPFS or Gemini

    A quick demo of how Techrights can be accessed without a browser, either over gemini:// or over http://



  28. The Command Line for Weather and Football Scores, Among Other Stuff

    A lot of stuff can be done from the command line and productivity (not to mention privacy) enhanced by automation and scripting over the Web (or even Gemini, as we shall show in a future video)



  29. You Know Gemini Space is Getting a Lot Bigger When You Need to Implement DDOS Protection

    Techrights is currently working on tools or programs that help detect and respond to DDOS attacks (or abusive over-consumption of pages) over gemini://



  30. The Fall of The Register

    A word of caution about The Register, a British publisher that nowadays does a lot of reputation laundering for Microsoft and Bill Gates (instead of news about actual technology, as opposed to clown computing, big brands, and oligarchs)


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts