UN Offices

Laboratory Team Assistant

UN Offices

Job Description

This post is located in the Laboratory and Scientific Service (LSS), Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs (DPA), UNODC, in Vienna. The incumbent will work under the overall supervision of the Chief, Laboratory and Scientific Service (LSS) and the direct supervision of the Laboratory Scientific Affairs Officer.

For more information on UNODC, please visit the website: www.unodc.org


The Laboratory Team Assistant will carry out the following specific duties:

•Provide general laboratory and office support services to help ensure the smooth functioning of the Global Scientific and Forensic Programme (GLOU54);
•Provide support in the preparation of UN drug and precursors field identification kits for distribution, e.g. preparing test reagents for kits; conducting quality control checks on these kits by verifying them using relevant colour reactions;
•Assist in the procurement of laboratory equipment and consumables needed for the enhancement of forensic capacity worldwide;
•Contribute to the preparation of ICE (International Collaborative Exercise) samples and reference samples (Seized Material, Biological Specimen and/or Security Documents samples), including the packaging of samples;
•Provide support in maintaining files (both paper and electronic), databases, inventories related to: (i) laboratory materials and supplies, including chemicals/reagents, for the preparation of drug and precursor test kits, (ii) reference samples, (iii) ICE samples, and (iv) other chemicals, materials and supplies for the applied research work of the unit;
•Assist in the administrative process of shipment of drugs and precursors kits and of crime scene kits and of the ICE programme; e.g. reviews, records, routes and/or process mail or other documents; gather pertinent background material; track and monitor follow-up action as required;
•Maintain a log of the laboratory work performed, including adherence or lapse in adherence to laboratory safety and security protocols and procedures, reporting such cases immediately to responsible senior laboratory technician;
•Assist in the preparation and organization of laboratory training and events (side-events, expert group meetings, conferences, field training, etc.) and related materials in the different areas covered by the forensic and scientific programme;
•Perform basic cleaning and preventive maintenance of equipment;
•Update and maintain lists; provide support in assembling and preparing documents, reports and other materials (presentations, tables, lists, graphs, charts and/or diagrams), where possible using electronic formats, for information and review by senior officers;
•Perform other work-related duties as required.


• Professionalism: Has some knowledge of laboratory and chemical substances related areas; has knowledge of chemical laboratory security and safety; has ability to adapt procedures where necessary; is proficient in the use of Computer Applications, in particular Microsoft Office, Excel and electronic databases; shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

• Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.

• Planning& Organizing: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.


High school diploma or equivalent preferably in natural/life sciences such as Chemistry, Biology or equivalent.

Work Experience

A minimum of two years of experience in practical experimental laboratory work and/or assisting in the organization of laboratory training is required.
Experience in chemical laboratory security and safety is required.
Experience with controlled substances, their handling as well as related laboratory work and its environment is desirable.
Experience in Procurement, administrative services and related areas is desirable.
Experience with the United Nations or similar international organization is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another United Nations official language is an advantage. Fluency of German is desirable to ensure smooth communication with Vienna-based vendors of laboratory materials.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise and a competency-based interview.

Special Notice

This position is subject to local recruitment pursuant to staff rule 4.4 of the United Nations Staff Rules. All staff in the General Service and related categories shall be recruited in the country or within commuting distance of each office, irrespective of their nationality and of the length of time they may have been in the country. Non-local candidates will be considered only when no suitable candidate from the duty station is identified and will be subject to local recruitment. A staff member subject to local recruitment shall not be eligible for the allowances or benefits exclusively applicable to international recruitment.

At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity.

All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect.

The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff.

Other Skills and Requirements

Passing the Global General Service Test (GGST) is a prerequisite for recruitment consideration in the General Services and related categories in the United Nations Secretariat. Applicants who have not passed the GGST at the time of application may be invited for the test after submitting an application.

The GGST is a proctored entry-level examination at the duty station. Any travel expenses incurred in order to take the examination are the responsibility of the candidate and will not be reimbursed by the Organization.

Having passed the Administrative Support Assessment Test [in English] at the United Nations headquarters, Economic Commission for Africa, Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia, United Nations Office at Geneva, United Nations Office at Vienna, International criminal tribunal for Rwanda or International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia may be accepted in lieu of the GGST.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of International Human Rights Law, violations of international Humanitarian Law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


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