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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 7: Meeting a Recruiter

Sell Yourself: Speak Professionally
During your time in the military you should have had ample time to learn to speak in front of others. Public speaking is extremely important in fire and rescue. As a firefighter, you will be expected to give presentations to members of your department and members of the community alike.

Public speaking is often referred to as the number one fear in the workforce. Tackle that fear early on. If you have to, sign up for speaking classes at your local community college or through the local Toastmasters. There is no substitute for the ability to list yourself as an accomplished public speaker on your application.

Wear a Suit
Always wear a suit or coat and tie. Wearing business attire shows that you hold yourself to the highest standards, and that is what a recruiter is looking for in a candidate. Many prospective recruits make the mistake of showing up in their every day street clothes. This does not go unnoticed and there is a high probability that your resume or application will end up on the bottom of the pile. If, for some reason, it is absolutely not possible for you to wear a suit then make sure you tell the recruiter before hand so they know.

Ask Questions
Be prepared with a list of questions you have for the recruiter. This is your chance to get clarifications to questions you might have about an agency you are interested in, common job tasks, or about general career advancement. Make sure your questions are relevant and aren’t already answered through general literature.

Don’t Be a Know-It-All
Don’t try to impress the recruiter with your knowledge (or perceived knowledge) of the government. You’re there to get information from the recruiter, not to give it. Even if the recruiter is telling you something you already know, listen intently and be thankful for the information.

Listen and Be Courteous
When you meet with a recruiter there will be opportunities for you to get your questions answered. Don’t interrupt or cause disruptions if the recruiter is speaking to someone else or isn’t answering your question as quick as you would like. Be courteous and wait for the appropriate time to interject or clarify your question.

Don’t Use Military Jargon
Even though you are transitioning to a military-friendly environment, remember that not all government employees are former military and may not understand or appreciate certain language, words, or attitudes. Always act and speak professionally in front of a recruiter. Even if you find out that the recruiter served in the same unit as you at some point, be professional and don’t accidentally start talking like you’re in boot camp.

Be Early
Do not be late, especially if you have a one-on-one meeting with the recruiter. Plan to arrive at least 15 minutes early. If you are meeting a recruiter at a job fair, remember that recruiters will usually not forget the first few people they talk to, even if they end up talking with dozens more throughout the day.

Expect Tough Questions
Why do you want a government job? Do you have anything questionable in your past? When was the last time you used drugs? Those are just a few of the questions that you will be asked during your application process. Be prepared to answer them quickly and honestly even as early as your first meeting with the recruiter. Always remember that if you lie, they will find out and your career will be over before it even starts.

Be Prepared to State Your Goals
You should list out your career goals before you even make a meeting with the recruiter. Be true to yourself and be honest, but don’t be stupid. If you’re talking to a recruiter about one specific career paths, don’t go into a lot of detail about your long-term career aspiration to work in a position which you are under-qualified for.

Remember that You Are Talking to a Government Official
The authorities and responsibilities bestowed on government officials can be very serious. You must always be professional and courteous to everyone you encounter. Your attitude and demeanor must convey the embodiment of these principles to the recruiter.


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    insider

    about 2 years ago

    4 comments

    how can a nobody go on usa jobs and apply for a job at a va med. center in the landre room or food service, get it then later on a vet of a foren war can go on and have to look at job listings he qualifys for but since its listed under for fed emploiees only he cant even apply for it but the noboby who lucked out by getting his job under the us citizen listing can. THIS IS WORNG and who is going to fix this all vets need to call their congressman and who ever it takes and whatever it takes to get this fixed.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    insider

    about 2 years ago

    4 comments

    vets should be first. the fact that anyone can get their foot in the door by getting a jod at the va in food ser or the landry room. then latter on a vet goes to usa jobs and has to look under us citizen, when the nobody who has been working in the landry room for a couple of weeks can apply for a job listed under fed employee and a war vet. cant. THIS IS WORNG AND NEEDS TO BE FIXED now who is going th fix IT.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    mrnate63

    over 2 years ago

    2 comments

    mrnate63 I have been trying since I got in 2001 but no luck., The President said they will help all veterans get a job., but when I try there is no luck on getting one I guess not what you know but who know that can help you get a good goverment job. p.s. I want give up with Gods Help I will get one.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    farleyk7

    over 3 years ago

    4 comments

    I attempted to work in Federal employment for a period after I graduated, but the process was ridiculously long and drawn out. So much so that I consider further attempts at applying to be a waste of my time and talent. I am an Iraq War veteran, I graduated with high honors from college, I was a member of student government, and I was the president of a local service group that raised money and gave presentations about global problems. I didn't have any difficulty finding a job in the private sector that matched my skills upon giving up waiting for a call back from the government jobs that I applied for.

    What really surprised me was that today I received an email that a job I had applied to got canceled. I applied to it so long ago that I don't even remember doing it (it would have had to have been at least six months)! Even if I were to get accepted into a government job at this point, I would decline since I'm happy with my current job. If the government doesn't get its act together and speed the hiring process they ought to be prepared for others like me to ignore it as a career choice and when the Boomers retire it will be horribly understaffed, but I suppose having one individual who can't get the job done is cheaper than having a thousand individuals who can't get the job done...

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    jgvandal

    almost 4 years ago

    2 comments

    I separated from the Navy in May of 2010 with 20 years of service. I started on USAJOBS in 2009. I was applying for jobs in my field. I have 5 years of experience in Occupational Safety and Health. I applied to over 20 jobs in that sight. I knew, I was just starting out so I applied at the lowest level just to get my foot in the door. I did not even get an interview. I do believe that government jobs are for the good old boy club. What happened to the law Obama passed that said vets get preference? The whole system is corrupt, just like our government. As I read these 10 steps, I just had to laugh. The person that wrote it must not have endured the pains of using that useless sight.

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    zhanxiaoli

    almost 4 years ago

    4 comments

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    zhanxiaoli

    almost 4 years ago

    4 comments

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  • Photo_user_blank_big

    vartovsk

    about 4 years ago

    2 comments

    i so agree with JusMe!!! I have 7 years experience working at Morgan Stanley a worldwide financial institution, 20% disabled from navy and a bachelor's degree in Finance. yet I cant even qualify for entry level position with the government because I KNOW they are just "hooking" up the HOMEBOYS and not really looking to hire qualified people. I DONT even get a call back! Thank you USA JOBS for the SCAM you run with our GOVERNMENT> TOTAL CRAP

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    JusMe

    about 4 years ago

    2 comments

    I agree with just_comment. I have been trying to get hired as a civil service employee since I seperated back in 2003...and guess what...no such luck! I have been working as a contractor, and have seen with my own eyes the type of illegal candidate targeting that government people do! They already know who they want to hire! They post a vacancy...to cover themselves, help the person they are targeting to fine tune their resume to ensure they get "selected' by resumix, when the resumes are referred, they just make sure that the person they targeted/their homegirl/homeboy is interviewed, then they pick the person that they wanted all along. So screwed up...and there is no way to get around it...SMH

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    just_comment

    about 4 years ago

    8 comments

    These articles are useless. You have to know someone to get a government job.

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    bforbes

    about 4 years ago

    18 comments

    I feel this is a great article, but the one thing I see missing from most of these articles are suggestions on how to land a government job after being separated from the service for several years. Most of these articles are geared towards newly separated veterans. I served in the Air Force for twenty years and did not consider the civil service directly after my separation. I've worked on and off getting whatever I could get while I supported my wife's military career for another 8 years until she retired. During all this time I could never land a government job. I have a bachelor's degree in management but many of the government jobs require you to be very overqualified for the positions you are applying for. PHD for a GS-12 ? Give me a break. So I would like to see some hard suggestions on landing government jobs years after separation. Thanks

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    LYN12

    about 4 years ago

    32 comments

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    jodyladams

    over 4 years ago

    2 comments

    Wow.....WELL I HAD HOPES VERY HIGH HOPES GET INTO WORKING AS A CILIVIAN FOR THE ARMY BUT - I TO HAVE APPLIED AND APPLIED AND I SEE FM ALL OF THE COMMENTS JUST NO CHANCE OF EVER GETTING IN.........IF YOU DON'T KNOW SOMEONE U DON'T GET IN......PLAIN AND SIMPLE WOULD HAVE BEEN EASIER FOR MY FAMILY IF I GOT KILLED WHILE IN THEN TRY AND GET A JOB WITH THE GOV. ...DAMN SHAME IN THIS GREAT COUNTRY OF OURS....

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    GentFromAlaska

    over 4 years ago

    4 comments

    The secrecy about the entire civil service hiring process irritates me the most. Thereafter the untruths. Having sat on the other side allowed me some insight into the civil service hiring process. Yes I do want the best qualified candidate and yes I want to promote from within, however I'm not willing to fudge the results for the latter. I realize there are postings for the sole purpose of pay grade promotions (not to be confused with step increases) which have to be advertised where the agency has no intent to hire or even interview other candidates. They are advertised because by the letter of the law they have to be. Civil service hiring managers should understand stupidity is a one way ticket out of the military and it is usually diagnosed early by a good leader.

    I asked in one interview, how many people were being interviewed and was told I can't tell you. Sure you can, there is nothing that precludes you from doing so that I'm aware of. The truth be you may not want to tell me or you are unsure. Okay I'll bite my tongue. Thereafter only to see two lower positions open at the same agency five weeks later. I may be wrong, this is a decent indicator and makes me suspect the agency has or intends to hire internally. In another interview, I saw the death look. Thereafter she blurted out six. Okay that is a good number. I think all internal civil service hires should be audited when a qualified veteran, retired (transistion) or otherwise is not selected except when Delegated Examining Unit (DEU) procedures are approved by OPM. And just just because I have a VA rated service connected disability doesn't make disabled. Some hiring managers really need to sharpen the saw a bit.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    changeisgood

    over 4 years ago

    2 comments

    Why don't you all get together and get a website and petition going? It seems with enough exposure (and the liberal media would love this) that veterans are getting shafted by the CPAC's, believe me no one in this environment is sure about their job anymore even the lazy a@##@# at the HR offices. Be the real change people, you can make it happen!

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