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Current and Prospective Employees

Eliminating Narrative Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs) Essay-Style Questions
Tips on using the Resume
Keywords
Numbers
Other Important Tips
How do I check the status of my application?
HHS Careers 

Eliminating Narrative Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs) Essay-Style Questions  

Tips on using the Resume  

One of the requirements of hiring reform is that you will be able to apply to almost any Federal job with just a resume and an optional cover letter. When applying to different types of jobs, you may still be required to answer a questionnaire or submit an online form, so please pay close attention to the information listed under the "How to Apply" section in each job opportunity announcement.

Keywords  

Keywords are very powerful words that can enhance a recruiter’s understanding of your qualifications and experience. For example, when a recruiter reads the keyword "analyst," he or she might assume you have experience in collecting data, evaluating effectiveness, and researching and developing new processes.

Keywords are most likely action verbs. When constructing your explanation of previous experience, you should use action verbs to act as descriptions, expressing how you performed that function and with what result.

If the job announcement uses keywords to describe the duties such as "develops" or "implements," these words are representative of independence in work assignments and the range of responsibility for the available position. You should include your experience "developing" or "implementing" to demonstrate your previous independence.

Numbers  

Enhance your résumé by adding numerical results. Numerical results can increase appeal with recruiters because it provides a description of the responsibility level that may relate directly to the duties of the position. For example, an individual who was in the budget field has "worked with disseminating budgets for small projects." But when the applicant describes her experience with numbers, her description is more relevant as "disseminated the budgets for small projects amounting to $450,000." Numbers can be a great way to describe the responsibility, pressures, and accomplishments of your previous endeavors as they relate to the position you are applying to.

Other important tips:  

  • Many of the assignments, committees, or extra-curricular groups students participate in can be used as experience on an application as long as it corresponds with the job duties and KSA’s of the position. For example, Katie was the head of the finance club where she worked on sample projects with a consulting firm. She can describe that experience when applying for a Financial Analyst position.
  • HHS advises applicants not to include their SSN on paper résumés or in the body of an electronic résumé.
  • Using bullets is a great way to describe job duties on a résumé.  Although not always common on federal résumés, bullets make it easier to read job duties.

How do I check the status of my application?  

  • To check the status of a vacancy through USAJOBS, logon to the MyUSAJOBS portion of the website and click on “Track your online job Applications”. This will show whether or not your application has been received.
  • Always keep a copy of the vacancy announcement. You are welcome to contact the Human Resources Specialist on the announcement for information regarding the status of your application.

HHS Careers  

Do you need assistance discovering the right career?  What about information on how to apply for Federal employment opportunities?  Are you interested in learning about the benefits afforded to Federal employees?  Then, HHS Careers is a one stop resource for all your employment needs!  Check it out at http://www.hhs.gov/careers/