Tips on the federal job process


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  • Tips on the Federal Job Process Did you know that there are 2200 federal libraries nationally? That means that library and information professionals are serving Americans every day in many ways. Informal survey--- How many of you have used the tutorials on the USA jobs website? How many of you have researched your top three federal organizations that you believe matches your vision and personal mission statement? Why, Why not?
  • The Presidential Memoranda intends to make the hiring process easier. You still need to do the research! That’s what library and information professionals are really good at! Focus and target your resume to the job announcement. Be creative and think about what is important to the hiring manager. The Why and the How? Why do you want this job, i.e. what skills and abilities can you bring to the table to add value to the organization? How do you do what you do and why is that important to the hiring manager? While the KSA’s may appear to be gone, it is still very important to answer the questionnaire and restate those items in your resume.
  • Be specific. The good news is that you can apply online. The bad news is that the resumes are screened by machines that look for WORD MATCHES. Be Clear. Be Precise. Map your competencies to the announcement and give specifics.
  • To get to the hiring manager a best qualified candidate receives 80+ points and is considered to have Superior Ability to perform the job as announced. Be specific, targeted, use action words, like …Designed, developed and implemented. Created, Communicated, researched, wrote, analyzed.
  • These are all true. Veteran’s Preference and any priority placement lists do get first consideration, so make sure that you are a good match to the position. Then take the time and energy to do it right. Be Persistent.
  • Please know that some positions are being announced Publicly as well as for Status Candidates. So read the announcement carefully. So what that means is that there might be an internal candidate but the hiring manager wants to get a broader cross section of applicants.
  • If you are targeting positions managed by OPM then USA Jobs is your default portal. What that means is not all federal jobs are announced via What do you do then? Check out the agencies website to see what vacancies appear there. Follow those instructions and apply.
  • Read these carefully. They state the competencies that are expected of an employee in a certain classification of position.
  • Not many Librarian Positions being announced and that may be becoming less over time.
  • The skill sets that are used by library and information professionals are very important. We organize, synthesize, verify, analyze, arrange and report on information. We research, recommend, and provide insight into the most complex problems. We think critically and identify bias, and add our expert knowledge to answer questions.
  • Technology skills are even more important today.
  • It’s really important to take the time to read the announcement carefully. Deconstruct the announcement by looking at the key elements of the job and what skills/competencies are necessary. It might be useful to compare the Duties stated in the announcement to the compentencies articulated in the Competencies for Federal Librarians.
  • Here’s a job announcement I found recently. It’s in the 2200 series and its called an IT Specialist Internet Series.
  • To give you an example I’ve broken down some of the key duties and skills/knowledge required.
  • Here I’ve taken some of the basic duties and then mapped the skills/knowledge required that included some of the concepts from the job questionnaire.
  • Tips on the federal job process

    1. 1. Tips on the Federal JobProcess Or How Do I Really Get To The Interview Stage? Marianne Giltrud November 5, 2011
    2. 2. Presidential Memorandum May 2011 Designed to Improve the Federal Recruitment and Hiring Process. Making it easier to apply for a federal job.
    3. 3. Good News Bad News Federal Hiring Managers do not have any input into the evaluation of applicants The first “eye” that “sees” your application is a computer. The next is the Human Resource employee. Third, is the hiring official. To get to this stage, your resume needs to be focused and targeted to the job announcement.
    4. 4. Best Qualified??? Yes, KSA’s…..No, KSA’s  Explicitly Call Out in Resume Typically receives 80+ out of a possible 100 Point Value for demonstrated qualifications  Superior Ability =4  Satisfactory Ability=3  Barely Acceptable or Potential Ability=2  Some Value=1  No value-0
    5. 5. Roadblocks Veteran’s Preference “Stoppers”-Priority Placement Lists and First Consideration Multiple Lists of Eligible candidates Desire to promote from within Too many candidates….Too few jobs Hiring freezes and slow downs  Alas a silver lining?
    6. 6. How do I know? If the announcement says…  Public  All Qualified  US Citizens  All Sources  All groups of qualified individuals  All qualified candidates  US Citizens and Status Candidates YOU MAY APPLY FOR THE POSITION-EVEN IF YOU ARE NOT A CURRENT OR FORMER FEDERAL EMPLOYEE, HAVE NO PRIOR FEDERAL SERVICE, OR ARE WORKING IN AN EXCEPTED SERVICE POSITION
    7. 7. Two Classes of Federal Employees Competitive Service  OPM, Civil Service Laws enacted by Congress. Candidates must meet all qualifications of the job. Excepted Service  Not subjected to Pay, Appointment, Classification Rules in Title 5, U.S. Code  FBI-GSA-STATE-CIA –May or May not advertise on USA Jobs  LOC --- Advertise on USA Jobs
    8. 8. 2011 FLICC Competencies for Federal Librarians
    9. 9. USA Jobs FAQ’s What’s new at USA Jobs at http:// Advanced Search http:// Saved Searches http:// Resumes Executive Service http://
    10. 10. Librarian Series 1410
    11. 11. Administrative and Program Series 301
    12. 12. Information Technology Series 2200
    13. 13. Job Announcements Read everything, read it again, reflect, read it for key words. Go Through Every tab  Overview, Duties, Qualifications & Evaluations, Benefits & Other Info, How to Apply  Be aware of timetable. If it says at 11:50pm on Nov. 5, 2011, it you turn it in at 12:00pm it won’t be accepted. Deconstruct the announcement  Identify Key Words based on the frequency in the announcement.  Think about the announcement…..  What are key elements to the job?  What are the skill sets required to do that? How can I translate or transfer my skills to this announcement?  Restate any questions from the job questionnaire in your resume.
    14. 14. IT Specialist Internet Series 2200
    15. 15. How You Will Be Evaluated You will be evaluated for the position based on the qualifications for this position as evidenced by the education, experience and training you report relevant to the position, that demonstrates that you possess the knowledge, skills and abilities required.  Be specific, explain the why and the how.  Look at the announcement and Map the Duties and Skills
    16. 16. Duties and Skills MapDuties of the Jobs Skills/Knowledge RequiredDesigns, develops and tests Designs, develops and maintains webwebsite. sites using Drupal CMS. Updates versions, customizes content, creates taxonomies.Contributes content to the website. Skilled in network communication, client- server architecture, programming languages, testing and debugging code.Acts as production coordinator for Creates and maintains websites using,the web page, multimedia postings HTML, PHP, PERL JavaScript, XHTML,and for public national website. XML, and CSS.Communicates with library wide Engages, connects and interacts withcommunities‘ of practice. users to ensure web accessibility and ADA compliance.
    17. 17. Achievements Created Association’s DRUPAL CMS website from the ground up. Awarded Best in Class for New Trends in Website Usability. Created a Wiki to enhance communication between various stakeholder groups. Improved quality and quantity of face to face networking activities. Constructed taxonomies, organizational frameworks, and structured content for easy access as well as improved look, feel and usability.
    18. 18. Frame Experience = Competencies Knowledge: Knowing about or understanding something, learning through study or experience Skills: Ability to perform something; knowing how to do something Ability: Capacity to do something, an inherent mental or physical characteristic that helps someone do certain things.  Paid and Non Paid  Volunteer-Homemaker  Capstone projects, practicum or internships  Other work experience
    19. 19. Tell Your Story Write in the first person. Use action words. Identify who you are dealing with…..Management, Customers, Team Members Show level of responsibility- Team Leader, team member, subordinate, providing support to management, etc. Include specialized education or training that helped make you successful. Include any awards or praise received.
    20. 20. Character Traits Take control of your part of the application process. Be selective in applying for the jobs and spend the time to do it right. Focus your time and efforts on the jobs for which you are best suited. Invest time and effort to create a strong, focused and targeted resume. Create as many word and phrase matches as you can with the announcement. Do everything they tell you to do within the time frame allowed. Be persistent. Keep trying.
    21. 21. Resources Careers in Federal Libraries Google Group Subscribe by sending an email to  Job Announcements, Resume Reviewers, Discussions New Feds on Facebook 2011 FLICC Competencies Education and Career Planning Wiki Careers in Federal Libraries Slide Share Account
    22. 22. Questions! Good Luck and Best Wishes!