Federal Application Workshopfor Veterans“How to Apply for Federal Employment” Presented by Don FromanJorge McCall
Section 1 - INTRODUCTION 1). Federal Facts 2). Where are these Jobs? 3). Why Apply for Federal Jobs? 4). Mobility 5). Veterans Preference 6) Special Hiring Authorities for Veterans
FEDERAL FACTS • Federal Government is the largest employer in the U.S. • 7,500 to 20,000 jobs open at one time. • In the next 5 -7 years, 60% of the Federal workforce will retire. • In most agencies, age is not an issue. • Veterans receive special consideration.
Dept. of Agriculture Dept. of Commerce FBI IRS Dept. of the Interior Dept. of Labor Small Business Admin. Social Security Admin. Dept. of Transportation Dept. of Homeland Security US Postal Service Veterans Administration Federal Agencies located in the Coachella Valley
Benefits • Retirement • Buy Military Time • Savings Plan • Rate of Pay • Healthcare • Sick Leave • Vacation • Paid Holidays • Pay Increases
Healthcare • Choose from a multitude of plans to fit your needs
Sick Leave • 4 hours per pay period, 2.5 weeks per year
Vacation / Annual Leave • With 3 years of service, you earn 6 hours per pay period. This is 4 hours shy of 4 weeks per year!!!!!
Paid Holidays • 10 Paid Holidays per year, which is 2 more weeks off per year! • Do the math, you only work 10 ½ months per year.
Scheduled Pay Increases • Annual increases • Based on your anniversary date (date of hire)
Retirement • You can purchase your military time to add to your retirement. • Retirement is based on your 3 highest grades.
Thrift Savings Plan • Allows you to invest up to 15% of your salary which is taken off the top of your paycheck. • This reduces your taxable income. • Catch-up contributions available to TSP participants age 50 or older.
Rate of Pay • Generally speaking, rate of pay is higher than the local economy. • Cost Of Living Allowance (COLA), additional money that is based on the local economy. • Example: Palm Springs’ COLA is 21.5%
MOBILITY • Location preference • Making grade and pay
VETERANS PREFERANCE • Veterans have preference over the general public. • 5-point preference • 10-point preference • less than 30% Service-Connected Disabled (SCD) • 30% SCD or more
SPECIAL HIRING AUTHORITIES • Veterans Recruitment Appointment (VRA) • 30% SCD or more • Veterans Employment Opportunity Act (VEOA) of 1998
Veterans Recruitment Appointments (VRA) • Eligibility Criteria • discharged under other than dishonorable conditions • recognized periods or campaigns • Time Limit • NONE • Grade limit • Up to GS-11
30% or More Disabled • Eligibility • self-explanatory • Time Limit • NONE • NO Grade limit
Veterans Employment Opportunity Act of 1998 • Allows eligible veterans to apply for positions announced under merit promotion (which closes it to the general public) when the agency is recruiting from outside its own workforce. (Agency means the parent agency, i.e. Treasury, not the IRS)
Introduction (End) Questions, Concerns ?
SECTION 2 - STARTING YOUR FEDERAL JOB SEARCH 1). 10 Steps for Tackling Applications 2). Federal Vacancy Announcements 3). Searching through USAJobs 4). Searching an Agency’s Official Website for Vacancy Announcements
10 Tips for Federal Applications 1. Identify and apply for appropriate Federal positions 2. Read and follow all directions 3. Choose application format 4. Keep it simple, but detailed 5. Be honest
10 Tips for Federal Applications (cont.) 6). Type your application 7). Avoid using shortcuts in the application 8). Keep it easy to read 9). Review your application before sending 10). Modify application for each position you apply for
1). Identify and apply for Federal positions • Identify jobs you’re interested in and qualified for • Every job has a full vacancy announcement • USA Jobs is the official Federal website • All announcements have contact information if you are unsure or have questions
2). Read and Follow All Directions • Qualifications, Requirements • Address all requested information • Include all supplemental forms and documents • Include all other qualifications • Questions? Call the POC for the announcement
3). Choose an Application Format • Most agencies offer you choice of applications in the form of a resume, Optional Application for Federal Employment (OF-612), or online application • It is YOURresponsibility to include all requested information • Supplement the resume with additional info as outlined in job announcement
3). Choose an Application Format (cont.) • Keep in mind, your application paves the road for your KSAs (Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities) • For accurate dates, request employment history from Social Security • Requirements differ between agencies; read & follow instructions in each Job announcement
4). Keep it simple, but detailed • Application should be thorough, detailed, and clearly depict experience, education, and qualifications. • Use percentages to account for experience • Use past-tense action verbs; accomplishments stand out. Do NOT just state duties • Use key words from vacancy announcements • Do NOT use civilian industry jargon, acronyms, or company specific terminology; govt. jargon OK
5). Answer Truthfully • Do NOT over-inflate your experience, knowledge, education, or qualifications • You will certify the accuracy of information provided • False or fraudulent info may be grounds for not hiring or firing after hired, and • May be punishable by fine or imprisonment
6). Type Your Application • Your application is your first impression • It should NOT be handwritten • All forms can be downloaded and typed out on www.opm.gov • Use Quick ‘n’ Easy Application software; next section will cover Quick ‘n’ Easy
7). Avoid Using Shortcuts on Application • Do NOT attach position descriptions to document your experience. • Do NOT assume HR knows your job because they don’t. • Put your experience in your own words, highlighting what you did not what was expected. Use %’s. • Need extra space? Attach response on plain paper.
8). Keep It Easy To Read • Two individuals will review your app. & determine if you meet the qualifications • Do NOT submit messy, wordy, or too much information on your application • Be Clear, Concise, and to the Point • Leave white space. • Highlight key points using bold or underlining,(NOTin Resumix; Army & Navy)
9). Review Before Sending • Review, review, review • Proofread for typos, grammar, punctuation, etc. • Ensure all requested forms are attached; DD-214, college transcripts, SF-15 for veterans preference, etc. • Failure to submit all requested documents will mean disqualification
10). Modify Applications • Using the same application over and over will hurt you • Modify application for each position you apply for highlighting outlined requirements • KSAs or qualifications must be linked back to employment & education • Quick ‘n’ Easy Application software will help tremendously
Federal Vacancy Announcements • Name of agency and office • Title of job and grade level • Opening and closing dates • Location of the job • Who can apply • Qualifications required for the job • How to Apply • Point of Contact
Section 2 - END Questions, Concerns ?
Section 3 - Federal Applications, Resumes, & Other Forms • 1). Federal Resume vs. Private Industry Resume • 2). 4 Common Application Methods • 3). OPM website • 4). Create your Own Federal-style Resume • 5). Quick & Easy software • 6). Application Resume • 7). SF - 15, Award Letters
Private Industry Resumes • Goal is to get an interview • 1 page, never more than 2 pages • Hit the highlights, forget the detail • Hiring decision comes after interview • No compliance details, i.e.. SSN, Supervisor’s name, Supervisor’s phone, Veterans Preference • Does not require KSAs
Federal Resume • Hiring decision based almost completely on resume (interviews are optional most times) • No limit (3-4 pages at least) • Use government jargon • Must include compliance details, i.e.. SSN, Supervisor’s name, Supervisor’s phone, Veterans Preference • Lays the foundation for your KSAs