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Find Your Federal Job Fit: How to Determine If You Meet the Qualifications for a Federal Job

February 19, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 170

Once you have identified the significant aspects of what you have to offer the federal government as an employee, you have the necessary information to demonstrate that you are the most qualified applicant for an identified position.

1. Conduct a job search on USAJOBS. USAJOBS is the federal government's primary source for federal job postings, although it is not the only source. It is probably the best place to begin your search because of the sheer numbers of job postings located there. Conduct a job search, using words that characterize your inventory of skills (obtained from your self-exploration in Part 1 of this series). On the search page, enter your primary skill or job title in the search box that indicates "what" and the geographic area in which you are interested in the search box that indicates "where". Note that the "what" box can be a job title (such as nurse) or a job activity (such as counsel). Clicking the "search jobs" box will reveal a list of jobs matching your criteria, with your search terms highlighted in yellow.

2. Learn about the job. Job titles are hyperlinks, which, when clicked, will open the specific job vacancy announcement. This is where you will discover the specifics of the position (salary, location, duties, qualifications, how to apply, etc.).

3. Study the vacancy announcement. A federal job posting is organized into five sections. Thoroughly read each section to determine whether this is a position that you wish to apply for and if you meet the qualifications.

a. Overview: provides a summary of the job, including salary, location, job title, who may apply for the job.

b. Duties: lists the performance expectations of the position.

c. Qualifications and Evaluation: lists information relative to an applicant's qualifications for the position. An important part of this section is "Specialized Experience" which defines the background an applicant must have.

d. Benefits and Other Information: describes federal benefits and other information not included elsewhere in the announcement.

e. How to Apply: this section provides step-by-step instructions for how to apply for the job. The name of the Human Resources professional who serves as the point of contact for the particular position is listed for applicants to contact with questions about the job.

4. Apply for the position. Upon completion of your analysis of the vacancy announcement, and you have determined that you are:(1) eligible to apply (in the Overview section);(2) meet the qualifications for the position (in the Qualifications and Evaluation section),(3) are willing and able to perform the job duties (in the Duties section) then you can(4) follow the instructions to apply for the job (in the How to Apply section).

In Part 3 of the series, we will explore the steps to create your federal resume so that you present yourself as the most qualified applicant for the position.

Janet M. Ruck is a career consultant who has co-authored two federal job search books "Find Your Federal Job Fit" (Jist, 2011) and "Guide to America's Federal Jobs" (Jist, 2009).

Source: EzineArticles
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