HZB as an employer

Who we are


BESSY II, aerial photo Wilhelm-Conrad-Röntgen-Campus at night, © euroluftbild.de/Robert Grahn

Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie (HZB) operates two large scale facilities for materials research: the neutron source BER II and the synchrotron source BESSY II, which provide deep insights into the structure of materials and the processes within complex systems. Each year around 3,000 scientists use the HZB infrastructure facilities. Important focuses of HZB are accelerator, materials and energy research.

We maintain strong ties to the Berlin universities and are also working closely with international experts from research and industry. Internationality, creativity, and our common quest for innovative solutions are only a few of our hallmarks.

Science + Career + Diversity = HZB

This is the formula for our successful human resources policy. We offer wide-ranging internal and external training programs for our employees as well as a special support program for young scientists. Our family-friendly workplace policy includes flexible working hours, telework arrangements and holiday programs for employees‘ children.

Why choose HZB?

HZB is an exciting workplace, offering you cutting-edge scientific facilities and a host of attractive opportunities for your professional development. At HZB, you will be working alongside people from different cultural backgrounds from around the World, all of whom are helping enrich life on our campuses. At our Wannsee and Adlershof campuses, some 1,100 men and women are working in a range of scientific, technical, and administrative jobs, making HZB one of Berlin's top 100 employers in terms of sheer size alone.

What you can expect

We are the right employer for you if you have a high level of motivation and a true commitment to supporting our research goals. From the beginning, our scientists take full responsibility for their own research projects and are given a lot of room for developing and implementing their ideas. If you are interested in coming to work for us in a administrative or technical capacity, you will be working closely with our scientists and contributing significantly to helping them turn their ideas into realities.

Best opportunities for PhD students and postdocs

Scientists working at one of BESSY II's beamlines.

There are approximately 90 PhD students conducting research at HZB, and about a third of them are international students. In order to ensure the best possible support for our doctoral candidates, we maintain close-knit ties to the Berlin-Brandenburg universities. As such, we offer prospective students a place in one of five graduate programs. The HZB doctoral student guidelines help ensure personalized and reliable care and support is provided to every single one of our PhD students. We give you the chance to attend international conferences, scientific conventions, or enroll in an advanced training course that has been custom-designed for doctoral students, including classes on time management, scientific writing, and intercultural competence. Through a range of doctoral seminars, regular get-togethers, and conferences, HZB doctoral students will find ample opportunities for exchanging ideas with their peers and connecting with others on campus.

HZB welcomes both German and international Postdocs. We offer a host of exciting and responsible research positions and different venues for international collaboration. Postdocs can also take advantage of an HZB initiative established to help orient newcomers to Berlin and HZB, and integrating them into our postdoc network.

A family-friendly atmosphere

HZB welcomes potential employees with families and children to apply for work at the center. We offer you flexible working hours, "unchaining you" from your desk and allowing you to work from home as well as family-friendly meeting times. We are also committed to supporting you if you have family members living with you who require care and we are offering a range of flexible employment models to ensure you are able to align your family commitments with your job.

In 2011 and again in 2015, HZB received the nonprofit Hertie Foundation's official "berufundfamilie" (lit., "job and family") seal of approval in recognition of its family-friendly policy.

Professional qualification as a top priority

HZB is committed to supporting its employees in their continued professional development and helping them enhance their technical, methodical, and social competencies. We regularly offer advanced training courses on topics ranging from project management to English, and you are most welcome to enroll in any of these.

An equal opportunities employer

The HZB actively promotes equal opportunities employment for both men and women at all stages of their professional careers with a range of family-friendly offerings, continuing education, advanced training options, and advising.

Fit for professional life – the HZB trainee program

Every year, some 30 youngsters enroll in one of our HZB trainee program's ten different job training programs and choose between three dual majors. Our staff is committed to helping you acquire both technical skills and the social competence you need to ensure a successful start to your professional career. We train you to be independent and responsible in a stimulating working environment.

Working within an inspiring environment

Aerial photo Lise-Meitner Campus
© HZB/ Dirk Laubner

The Wannsee campus is located in the Southwestern part of Berlin, some 40 minutes outside the city's center. The campus is a hub for researchers, visiting scientists, and doctoral students from all walks of life and from around the World to meet. The Freie Universität Berlin, the University of Potsdam, and a host of other research institutes are near to the Wannsee campus. Our food court's daily menu offers different meals at affordable prices and the sun terrace is open for you from spring through autumn.

The HZB Adlershof campus is located right at the heart of Berlin's largest technology park. Spanning an area of some 4 square kilometers, more than 1,000 different companies as well as 16 scientific institutes are based there. Over 25,000 people work here in a highly creative setting. A host of different cafeterias, cafes, and restaurants ensure you'll always find the right place to eat.

Campus life

If this is your first time on campus or if you are visiting from another country, you'll have an easy time connecting with your co-workers. Our HZB company athletics group is a perfect way for meeting new people. Choose from among our many offerings, regardless of whether it's badminton, walking, aerobics, table tennis, or volleyball you enjoy. Our athletic group also regularly - and successfully - takes part in international athletic competitions.

Our summer festivals are yet another venue for you to meet others on campus within a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.

We look forward to hearing from you.