Resumes - 10 Tips For Success
by: Heather Eagar
A federal job requires you to take a different approach and adhere
to a different set of rules and techniques. Unlike private sector
recruitment, the procedures followed in federal recruitment goes
by certain criteria and rules. The basic idea here is to provide
every applicant an equal opportunity. Of late, the OF-612 form,
or Federal Resume, is the accepted resume form for federal jobs.
Here are 10 key tips to writing a Federal Resume that works:
1. Donít forget to include information specific to the job as advertised.
Information such as the job number, grade and title of the jobs
you are interested in applying for.
2. Include personal information such as your full name, mailing
address with ZIP code, any phone numbers, Social Security Number,
reinstatement eligibility and civilian grade, including the job
series and dates that you held the previous position.
3. Write your educational qualifications in chronological order,
starting from high school to college. Include the name and city
of each institution, and the type and year of diploma/degree received.
Donít forget to highlight the grades that you received and any awards.
Make detailed descriptions in the KSA.
4. You must specifically mention the major subjects and total credits
you have earned. While writing these points, you may be tempted
to make use of bullet points Ė however, while these work well for
resumes targeting civilian positions, they may not be well received
when applying for federal jobs.
5. You should explain things in great detail. The underlying reason
for this is that education counts a lot more in federal recruitment
than in the private sector. Therefore, you should use this format
to show (read: market) how well you qualify for the job through
6. Even if your education does not exactly match the qualifications
as advertised, you can still qualify through equivalent experience.
In this case, you can get over this hurdle by explicitly spelling
out your previous experience and how it relates to the job at hand.
7. Federal Resumes are not scanned by machines in most cases, which
in itself must be a welcome relief. Since your resume will most
likely be read by an actual, live human, make sure that you make
the most of it by being as descriptive as possible.
8. If you have previous work experience having relevance to the
job in question, include it with full details. Give the telephone
numbers of employers, position(s) you held, numbers of hours per
week and salary. Writing your accomplishments and duties (to a lesser
extent) is important. You should also indicate whether it is OK
to contact the previous employer.
9. Donít forget to write about any other qualifications that may
be even slightly related to the job. Explain why you think they
are similar by giving concrete such as software used, etc. Memberships,
certificates or awards also count heavily in federal job applications.
10. Donít forget to enclose the KSA and mention it in the resume.
Avoid the KSA becoming a verbatim copy of your resume. Write the
KSA in your own style, without borrowing from samples and use lots
of examples to justify your application. Always type your full name
and sign it.
The bottom line here is that you cannot follow the same rules for
federal resumes as for civilian ones. By following the tips above,
and writing your KSA's descriptively and succinctly, you will be
well on your way to landing that federal job.