In the past few years it has become more difficult for folks seeking federal jobs to secure employment because:
- Fewer jobs are available. The Legislative and Executive branches have cut back substantially on funding in the Federal government. These cutbacks have caused job freezes and downsizing.
- More people are applying for each job, even those with lower salaries and less advancement.
- More veterans are applying as they are released from or retire from service.
- Veterans are give preference among applicants for jobs.
- The application process has changed, with multiple choice questions about skills, knowledge, and abilities instead of a narrative. The questions are very specific for the job, and in some cases, for the pre-selected person the hiring official wants for the job.
How can I help job applicants in this new environment? There are several things I ask potential clients to determine if they qualify for a federal job:
- “Have you been asked to apply for the job? Is the announcement tailored to your background?” For example, I often help folks get very technical jobs working for the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), even if they are not veterans, since the jobs require specific degrees and highly technical experience.
- “Are you a disabled veteran?” If a disabled veteran has at least some experience and can match the minimum requirements and if the job is below GS-09, they have a very good chance at qualifying.
- “Are you a veteran?” If so, they could qualify for a job where they are the expert in all the job duties and can answer every question in the questionnaire.
- “Do you have clearance?” Due to the number of veterans with clearance now applying for jobs, controversies in the current clearance processes, budget cutbacks, and the costs/time to conduct clearance checks, many agencies no longer process new clearance checks, except in very few cases.
If a person is not a veteran and has not been asked to apply for the job with a job tailored to them, the chances that they will be hired for the job are very low—unless it is a highly technical position and the applicant has all the expertise and qualifications asked for.
If a client is qualified for the job, the resume that is written must address every item in the questionnaire, job duties, and job requirements.
If you are unsure whether you qualify for a federal job, please contact Robin’s Resumes®.