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Managing Your Federal Job Search Campaign

Federal Job Search Campaign

Federal Job Search Campaign

Karol Taylor shares some great insight:

Can you think of ways you might conduct a campaign – any kind of campaign? Three styles immediately come to mind: political, advertising, and fundraising. Your federal job search can be understood this way: In a political campaign, someone is selected based on written and verbal advertising that promotes his skills. If selected, he gets paid. Your federal job search campaign is comparable: Your skills are marketed on a résumé, validated in the interview, you’re selected, and as a result, you get paid!

But how do you make this happen? What are some strategies for managing your federal job search in a way that meets your desired outcome? You need a plan!! Below are specific actions to take:

#1. Have a well-developed, up-to-date résumé (#1 in the builder), and NEVER use it to apply for a job (more later). Use the builder for the following reason: federal HR needs specific information to complete their paperwork. If your résumé does not include that information, there will be no review, and thus no referral to the hiring manager. For each and every application, duplicate résumé #1, then customize it by adding key words (specialized experience and competencies), and use this résumé to apply for the position. Be sure to delete it after your application has been accepted, making room for the next.

#2. Keep a federal job application “library.” Double check to make sure your application package uploaded properly, then copy and paste your résumé to a Word document. Be sure to save a copy of the Vacancy Announcement, too. Make the file easily identifiable so you can use it to prepare for your interview.

#3. Use your Occupational Series (four-digit code) found at OPM.Gov on the saved search function. Two series that need to be narrowed further are 0343 and 2210. Add relevant key words to these. To identify your specific occupational series, review the following article and read about qualifications.

#4. Save relevant documents to your USAJOBS account. USAJOBS only allows for low-resolution documents (limited space), so include as much information from them as you can on the résumé builder, even if it is duplicative.

#5. Network. You are poised to post a highly competitive federal application package. How will the hiring official know your name? Here are some ideas:

You know someone who knows a federal hiring manager in your field – ask around. Then ask that person to give the hiring manager a copy of your résumé. Do this prior to job postings to avoid any semblance of pre-selection. If the supervisor responds that they are not currently hiring, suggest that the supervisor hold onto it in the event that those circumstances change. Don’t do this after a job has been posted, the appearance of pre-selection will put the supervisor’s job at risk. He or she will not under any circumstance accept it.
Join Toastmasters, Inc. Almost every federal agency has one. Employees might be willing to share your résumé with their boss.
Complete a Google search to find a professional federal organization related to your field. Use key phrases like “federal ‘your field’ organizations”.
The Office of Personnel Management offers a list of approved professional affiliations. NASA offers a list as well.

#6. Develop two powerful tell-me-about-yourself / why-should-I-hire-you pitches to use while networking. The first pitch will be fewer than 12 words in length and should be used when introducing yourself. Develop it in a way that helps the other person to understand your skill set. It should address your major tasks – not everything you do, which is how you can narrow it to 12 words. The second pitch should take between one and two minutes to share, and can be used when the entire networking group is making introductions. Again, be sure that every word counts, and do your best to sound professional. (This pitch can also be used in an interview.)

All job searches need a plan, but a private sector plan will not be effective in a federal search. The above tips are designed to address the unique federal job search process. They provide powerful insight on how to develop a strategy for managing a successful federal job search campaign.

See more at: http://www.careersingovernment.com/tools/gov-talk/about-gov/managing-federal-job-search-campaign/#comment-100196