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10 Steps to a Government Job - For Military Service Members

10 Steps to a Government Job - For Military Service Members

GovCentral and Military.com


Step 4: Choose an Agency

Starting pay, proximity to where you want to live, and the amount of positions in demand are all important to take into consideration when you choose a government agency you want to apply for. Rather than decide that you want to work for a super-specific department with 10 staff members, try to choose a type of department that suits you best. One of the biggest mistakes made by candidates is having their heart set on one specific department and refusing to apply anywhere else. As anyone with experience will tell you, this is a big no-no.

Once you decide what type of agency you want to work for, decide WHERE you want to work. Try to narrow it down sooner rather than later, because you want to be sure you’re available in the area for interviews, exams, background checks, etc.

Now that you’ve decided where you want to work, here are a few pointers for narrowing in on the specific departments.

Zero In

It is important to do your research on your relocation area’s government departments. Most importantly, set up a calendar of application dates so that you can be prepared well in advance. Also set up a pro’s and con’s list of all your possible areas of relocation including salary information for those departments, application requirements, and interview schedules.

Agency and Department Reviews

Learn what departments are in the area and start researching them. Searchable by region, GovCentral Department and Agency Reviews are a great source of inside information about government offices throughout the country. Visit individual department websites and learn what type of work they do, how big the departments are, their chain of command, and anything else you can about the agency. Of special importance should be their recruitment section. This may indicate if they’re hiring, or when their next exam may be. It should also list qualifications for the positions, such as maximum age, educational requirements, past military service, etc.


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    ddog79

    over 5 years ago

    2 comments

    I'm not sure of the answer to darrocs' question as to the documentation, I only have my own experience as a point of reference. I applied for and was interviewed for a VA job while I was still on active duty as a Marine. I got the phone call about two weeks later with the job offer. I started work at the VA while I was on terminal leave, one week prior to my retirement date. I was told by our human resources person that I would not get paid by the VA for that week since I was still being paid by the military. I was please to find out two weeks later that she was wrong. I received my military and government pay for the one week overlap period. I assume it was legal since no one has said anything to me for the two years I've been a gov worker.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    SFCRaymondrThibault

    over 5 years ago

    12 comments

    I always kept my documentation up to date. I was the only one on site in Salopi Turkey/ Zakhu Iraq in 1991 Operation Provide Comfort, 21st/22nd TAACOM Logistics with a NATO Secret Clearence. The Oficers had to depend on an SFC to update and brief them NCOS get it done.

  • Scot_max50

    darrocs

    over 5 years ago

    2 comments

    I am getting ready to retire from the Army soon and cannot find any documentation on whether or not I can start a GS position while on PTDY and Terminal Leave. Can anyone out there point me in the direction where I can find this documentation? Thanks.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Seven7777

    over 5 years ago

    2 comments

    Vietnam "era" vet. Desert Shield/Storm vet. Iraqi freedom vet. I have been in and out of the Military due to the treatment that vets have faced sinced the 70's when they try and re-enter civilian life. I've seen all the horrors. After Desert shield/Storm, I just knew that it was my last hoorah! Joined the Resrerves and worked in the private sector (on the civilian side). No respect. Mar 2003, I was called back to serve. Imagine that. Well, i tried it one final time and my unit got deployed in June 2006. My bubble was busted because my wife has severe rhumetoid arthritis. I could not go. Don't know what has happened to my unit but; I sure wish i could be there with them. At least i'm working in the private sector. right? Yeah. Got laid off in Mar 2008. Still laid off. Been applying everywhere. Attending Job-fairs etc....Am i bitter??? No. I just miss the military. Hoorah!!

  • Capitol_dome_max50

    Chris_Cosgriff

    almost 6 years ago

    16 comments

    Unfortunately, the document is not available offline at this time. We'll work on creating a document version.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    almost 6 years ago

    Is there any way to view this article as a Word document? I'm currently going through ACAP and would like to share the article with the other military members in my group that will be separating soon. Thanks.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    about 6 years ago

    I aim to help.

  • Sldrgrl_max50

    sldrgrl

    about 6 years ago

    4 comments

    Thanx Scoob

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    about 6 years ago

    Veterans' Employment Opportunities Act of 1998, as amended
    When an agency accepts applications from outside its own workforce, the Veterans' Employment Opportunities Act of 1998 (VEOA) allows preference eligibles or veterans to compete for these vacancies under merit promotion procedures. Veterans who are selected are given career or career conditional appointments. Veterans are those who have been separated under honorable conditions from the armed forces with 3 or more years of continuous active service.
    Purpose of the Law
    Improved Access: The intent of the law is to open up opportunities to veterans that might otherwise be closed to them because agencies were increasingly limiting announcements just to "status" candidates - i.e., those who were already civil service employees. This law requires an agency to allow eligible veterans to apply when the agency will accept applications from individuals outside its own workforce. ("Agency," in this context, means the parent agency - i.e., Department of Defense, not Department of the Army.) Veterans' preference, however, does not apply to selections made under merit promotion procedures.

    Improved Redress: The VEOA also allows a preference eligible who believes an agency has violated any of his or her rights under the veterans' preference laws or regulations, to file a formal complaint with the Department of Labor's Veterans Employment and Training Service (VETS). If VETS is unable to resolve the complaint within 60 days, the veteran may appeal to the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). The law also makes a willful violation of veterans' preference a prohibited personnel practice under law.

    Who is Eligible
    To be eligible for a VEOA appointment, a veteran must be honorably separated and either a preference eligible or have substantially completed 3 or more years of active service. ("Active Service" under this law means active duty in a uniformed service and includes full-time training duty, annual training duty, full-time National Guard duty, and attendance, while in the active service, at a school designated as a service school by law or by the Secretary concerned.) A veteran who is released under honorable conditions shortly before completing a 3-year tour is also eligible.

    How to Apply
    Agency announcements will say when veterans eligible under this law may apply. The veterans will be rated and ranked with other merit promotion eligibles. Those who are among the best qualified may be selected by the appointing official, but veterans' preference is not a factor. If selected, the veteran will be given a career or career conditional appointment, as appropriate.

  • Sldrgrl_max50

    sldrgrl

    about 6 years ago

    4 comments

    Thanks for your information however, what can a veteran who does not fall into either of the above categories (5pt; 10pt; or VRA preferences) do? Can you explain the VEOA of 1998? And are all former servicemembers who served 3 or more years continuously, with a honorable or general discharge eligible to claim this?
    Thanks

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    about 6 years ago

    Get your resume done early and go see a vet counsoler.

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