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How Are Federal Resumes Different?

How Are Federal Resumes Different?

Monster Federal Career Coach by Kathryn Troutman

March 03, 2008

How are Federal Government resumes different then your usual job resume? We’ve got the answers for you.

Monster member twilliams 406 asks: I have a private-sector resume that I think looks pretty good; can I keep anything from it when I write my federal resume, or is it better to start from scratch?

The Federal Career Coach responds: You might be able to keep some of the language, but chances are you’ll need to build and add more content to your resume for it to match government vacancy announcements as well as make the most of your federal job search. If you find two or three jobs that look interesting, look at the language that outlines the duties and try to use some of those words as resume keywords.

Submitting a private-industry resume is a common error. The job seeker knows he’s qualified ou’ll have to describe your work in more detail. The one-line bullet point that you might have used in your private-sector resume will become four or six lines or four sentences.

For example, on a private-sector resume, you might have a bullet that says: “Led a team of 12 project coordinators, writers and editors.” On your federal resume, you can say: “Led a team of 12, delegated tasks to the various team members, planned agendas for meetings, reviewed work, trained staff in carrying out project loads, resolved problems, prepared briefings for senior officials based on project deadlines, established benchmarks.”

It almost sounds like your federal resume should sound like what you would say in a private-sector interview, where someone reads a bullet point on your resume and says, “Could you explain this?”

That’s a very good point. It’s more of an expanded written/verbal resume. In fact, a government resume is considered to be the application, an examination, because they examine the resume to ensure you’re qualified. And sometimes government hiring managers don’t interview — they hire based on what they see on the resume.

Next Page: Can you send a resume and get a job offer from it?

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