Author: Dr. Dana

Be ready to answer: What do you know about our agency?

On the surface, it seems like an ice-breaker or a throw-away question. No one expects you to recite everything there is to know about the agency. They just want to know you cared enough to look it up and have a sense of what you’d be getting yourself into if you took the job. But, you have to assume every question asked of you, no matter how innocent it seems, can be the make-or-break question.

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Can you negotiate your grade in a government job offer?

If you’re new to government, the first thing you’ll learn is that every position has a grade associated with it. These aren’t the grades we’re used to seeing in school (A, B, C-) but rather numerical representations of the level of expertise required for a particular position. Your first government job is the one time you’ll be able to negotiate grade.

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Why interviewers ask: ‘Why do you want to work here?’

We all have different reasons for why we work where we do. Some want job security. Others want to serve the American public. Still others just need a paycheck. There’s also those who want work-life balance. And, admittedly, others work where they do because that was the first agency that gave them an offer. The question becomes: How honest should you be when you’re asked about your motivation to have applied to this particular job.

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Write a Federal resume like a pro: 7 tips to make sure it’s seen

If you read many articles or blogs about people who are trying to get into the Federal government, it seems the biggest hurdle is getting beyond submitting an application. A Federal resume pro is someone who has figured out the algorithm for writing a resume. These pros are the most likely to have their resume reviewed by the hiring manager. As a little background, it might be interesting to describe the basic steps of the Federal hiring process. Basic steps of the Federal hiring process You submit application by 11:59 pm of the job announcement close date. HR reviews applications to determine if you meet basic requirements. Top applications are sent to the hiring manager to review. Hiring manager schedules interviews (phone or face-to-face). Hiring manager conducts interviews and makes selection. Name of person the hiring manager selects goes back to HR. HR calls the lucky candidate with a tentative job offer. If you are someone who can’t get past stage 2 of this hiring process, I’m here to help. There are just a few small adjustments to significantly increase your chances of getting your Federal resume seen by a hiring manager. Here’s 7 pro tips for writing a Federal resume: Print out the job announcement. Highlight the key words or phrases you see repeated. Make sure those key words are in there as many times as possible. Remember, if the key words...

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