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How To Write A Resume For A Government Position

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Read The Job Description Carefully

4 Tips To Write An Effective Federal Resume

It is important to read the job description carefully before writing a cover letter to get all the necessary details. Make sure you know which skills and experiences are necessary for the position. Consider which of these requirements you have and how you can highlight them in your cover letter. The job description also informs you about other job requirements. Some job descriptions have specific requirements for a cover letter, so ensure you check for these and follow the instructions carefully.

Ccar Method For Writing Ksa

Youll write from a first-person perspective. Your narrative should explain how you learned your knowledge and applied it to overcome challenges.

As for how to complete the KSA for a federal job, the CCAR method offers a good strategy. CCAR directs you to frame your responses around context, challenges, actions, and results.

Examples of KSAs for federal jobs typically include these 4 elements. They work well to build responses that effectively describe your experience.

Locate the CCAR elements in this example statement for a fish biologist job:

As a biologist for the State Wildlife Agency, I monitored populations of 12 sport fish species in inland waters. Feedback from anglers suggested that populations were dipping in 4 key species. To improve the accuracy of my data, I gained authorization from my director to add more sampling locations. I additionally surveyed anglers at 3 of the areas most popular fishing lakes over 6 months. The additional data enabled the adjustment of catch limits and the recovery of the affected fish populations in 5 years.

To get the best idea of how to approach a KSA, look for KSAs for federal jobs examples related to your field.

Identify Licenses Or Certifications

This section is optional and only required if applicable to the position. If the job posting identifies a license or certificate explicitly to be considered for candidacy, detail the information in this section. You can list professional designations, such as being a CPA or chartered professional accountant, or professional licenses, such as a P. Eng. or professional engineer license.

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Use Numbers As Much As Possible

Use numbers to evaluate your statements and demonstrate your contribution when adding your KSAs into your federal resume. Where possible, include precise monetary sums, timings, and amounts. You should add more details since federal human resources specialists would like to know that you have the abilities needed to succeed and contribute to the company.

How To Write A Federal Resume In 2021

Federal Government Resume Example

Creating a federal resume is a lot trickier than a conventional one.

For starters, you need to make it way more comprehensive .

You also have to add very specific details, such as your GS rating, clearance, and more.

Want to learn how to create/build a federal resume the easy way?

Read on to find out:

  • Whats a Federal Resume & How Does It Differ From a Conventional One
  • How to Write a Federal Resume in 6 Easy Steps
  • How to Look for Federal Jobs

And more!

So, lets get started.

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How To Write A Ksa For A Government Job

  • How to Write a KSA for a Government Job
  • The majority of government job announcements will require applicants to complete a KSA questionnaire. The acronym stands for Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. KSAs for federal jobs collect information from applicants about their experiences that are directly related to the job.

    Knowing how to write KSA for federal jobs will greatly improve your chances of being asked to a job interview. Hiring managers consider the responses on KSAs as closely as resumes.

    The KSA government jobs questionnaire essentially serves as a preliminary job interview in written form. It supplements your resume although its acceptable to repeat information on a KSA thats already present on your resume.

    Follow these basic steps to write answers for your KSA:

  • List important keywords from the job announcement that pertain to requirements and qualifications. Youll want to incorporate these keywords in your KSA.
  • Identify factors related to job requirements within the job announcement. Check for special selective factors or special placement factors necessary to qualify for the job at all. Your KSA must address these special factors to gain an interview.
  • Spend some time thinking about all of your experience and skills. Pertinent experience, even from unpaid volunteer activities, counts as well as work history.

    Key Components Of Your Federal Resume

    To create your federal resume, we strongly suggest you use the Resume Builder on USAJOBS to guide you through the resume-writing process to ensure you do not leave out anything important. You are permitted to create several resumes and tailor them to fit different positions. You may also create a searchable, master resume that enables HR specialists to contact you about an opportunity that might be a great fit for your skills and experience.

    Building Your Federal Resume

    • Candidate Information

    You will first be asked to provide your name, contact information, citizenship status and other basic information. Most positions require applicants to be a U.S. citizen to apply, but there may be some exceptions for hard-to-fill jobs. You also need to identify whether you have ever worked for the federal government and whether you qualify for veterans preference.

    Note: You are eligible for veterans preference if you have served on active duty in the Armed Forces.

    • Work experience

    List the required information fields for all relevant jobs youve held. Each part of the resume is essential to your resume meeting the minimum qualifications. Experienced workers may choose to only list jobs held in the last 10 years.

    Required:Employer, location, position title, start and end date, average hours worked per week, responsibilities and accomplishments.

    • Education

    Required:Schools attended, degrees obtained.

    Optional Information to Include

    Jobrelated training


    Language skills

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    List Any Professional Development Training

    List any professional development training that is specific to the job position. This section is optional but can provide further credibility to your expertise by showing your willingness to continue improving your skills and knowledge. If you include this section, begin with the title of the training you completed, the facility that provided the education, and the date you finished. This is an excellent opportunity to highlight essential or asset experience not listed in your work history section.

    Related: How To Write a Targeted Resume in Five Steps

    List Your Past Work Experiences In Detail

    Essential Tips for Writing Your Federal Resume

    Your work experience section is going to make or break your federal resume.

    At the end of the day, this is what hiring managers really care about, while the rest of your resume is supposed to support this section.

    Creating a convincing work experience section for a federal resume is a 2-parter:

    First, you need to make sure that you include all the relevant work experience information.

    Then, you need to present your path responsibilities and achievements in the most convincing way possible.

    Let us teach you how to do both:

    What to Include in a Federal Resume Work Experience Section

    For each entry in your work experience section, start off with the employment information. This includes:

    • Employer name
    • Whether Its OK to Contact Supervisor

    Heres how this would look in a real-life resume entry:

    Supervisory Security Specialist

    Average Hours Per Week: 40

    Supervisor: Michelle Doe

    Yes, you may contact the supervisor.

    Then, in plain text or in bullet points, describe all your responsibilities and achievements right underneath each work experience.

    If you had several roles for the same employer, bold out each role and put the corresponding responsibilities and achievements underneath.

    Here, Its important to note that you want to be as detailed as possible, compared to when compiling a conventional resume.

    For the latter, youd list out 4-6 bullets of your top achievements and responsibilities and call it a day. With a federal resume, you need to include more information.


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    Identify Your Highest Gs Grade

    All jobs within the federal government are graded within the General Schedule to determine pay rate and job responsibility. The GS scale goes from 1 to 15 with 10 steps within each grade that have a pre-determined pay increase at each step. If you are currently employed with the federal government, include your highest GS grade and current salary range.

    Tailor To The Job Posting

    Never use the same resume for different government positions. Whether it is an old federal resume or a new resume you wrote for another job, create a new version for the position you are applying for.

    Match the language and competencies of the posting, so its clear to the hiring manager that you took the time to carefully review the job description and requirements.

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    Sample Rsums You Can Download

    The following are 2 downloadable samples of résumés:

    These samples contain all the sections normally found in a résumé. They are designed to help you prepare a clear and professional looking résumé.

    To use one of the samples, save a copy of the one that interests you on your computer. You can then replace the information contained in the various sections with your information.

    How To Write A Cover Letter For A Government Job In 5 Steps

    FREE 8+ Sample Federal Resume Templates in MS Word

    A cover letter can sometimes be the first impression of you on your job application. A well-written cover letter helps your application stand out among others and improves your chances of getting an interview invitation. Government jobs can be competitive, and it’s essential to have a cover letter that communicates your thoughts and pays attention to detail. In this article, we discuss how you can benefit from a good cover letter, explain how to write a cover letter for government jobs, provide an example, and answer frequently asked questions about the process.

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    How To Write A Ksa Statement

    Many government occupations require KSA scores on the federal resume, the capabilities needed for the post, and achievements and work experience that represent what a potential employer is searching for.

    Understanding how to successfully incorporate this information into your resume could help you land your dream position. Give examples to demonstrate that:

    • You took the initiative to resolve a problem.
    • You devised a novel system or applied software to a new goal.
    • You functioned as a mentor to newer employees.
    • You had to cope with several challenging circumstances.
    • You worked on a variety of projects in numerous functional spheres
    • You were a part of a team that worked together to attain clearly stated goals. However, remember when showing team activity to identify your role in it.

    Creating Your Own Federal Resume

    Are you applying to a government job that requires you to upload your federal resume to USAJOBS or a specific agency website? To make a resume with proper federal resume formatting, include these sections:

    Heres how to determine what you should list for each of those items:

    Desired job details

    Per the US Department of Labor, you need to list the title, grade, and announcement number of the job youre applying for on your federal resume. Find the job details on the USAJOBS job posting, and list them like this:

    Desired Job: Human Resources Specialist, GS 12, CARX-21-11007872-SHe-OCA

    Citizenship status

    Many positions in the federal government have specific requirements regarding citizenship, so include your citizenship and visa status to speed up the vetting process. List your citizenship status as either yes or no, or write your work visa status.

    Veterans preference

    The federal government gives hiring preferences to veterans under the The Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974. So if you served in the US military, include your veterans preference on your resume.

    You should either list your veterans preference status as no , or your point preference eligibility .

    If you dont already know your veterans preference eligibility, find it at


    If you have a Schedule A disability, you may be eligible for special hiring preferences. Heres how to list your disability on your resume:

    Disability: Schedule A

    General schedule grade

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    Have Your Resume Reviewed

    Your resume is such a large part of finding success, so why do the minimum when it comes to making sure its stellar? Not only does a review service ensure that it will be free of grammatical and structural errors, but it also helps to give it the extra edge that could make all the difference. You want your resume to be clear, concise, and well designed. At we offer different resume review services that are sure to give your resume the edge and promise you have been trying to achieve.

    How To Write A Good Resume

    3 Resume strategies for a Government job

    Your resume must clearly, concisely and strategically present your qualifications to get a recruiter interested in meeting you. It should convey your skills, work experience and assets. The resume is used to describe what you can accomplish professionally in a manner that also illustrates what you can do for an employer. Job opportunities can arise unexpectedly. An updated modern resume is the key to a successful job search. Here are some do’s and don’ts of how to write a good resume and what to include.

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    Use Numbers To Highlight Your Accomplishments

    Use numbers, percentages or dollars to highlight your accomplishmentsyou can find this information in things like your performance reviews, previous job descriptions, awards and letters of recommendation.

    When explaining your accomplishments:

    • Include examples of how you saved money, earned money, or managed money.
    • Include examples of how you saved or managed time.


    • Improved efficiency of document processing by 25% over the previous year.
    • Wrote 25 news releases in a three-week period under daily deadlines.
    • Managed a student organization budget of more than $7,000.
    • Wrote prospect letter that has brought in more than $25,000 in donations to date.

    These statements show in concrete terms what you accomplished.

    Provide A Detailed Personal Information

    The personal details section of a federal resume needs more information than a conventional resume.

    Heres what you need to include in the personal information section of your federal resume:

    Your full name
    A mailing address
    The details of the desired position & Availability Citizenship status
    The last 4 digits of your social security number Physical disabilities
    Highest General Schedule grade Your veterans preference


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    Writing A Resume For State Government

    Applying for a state government job is a unique process in comparison to other industries. Just as with most jobs, however, the first step is creating a resume. With state jobs there are some distinct considerations and expectations to keep in mind when doing so. Here are some tips on how to craft an exceptional resume for state government opportunities.

    Start by visiting the official website of the state government you are interested in. Each state will have its own process and expectations regarding the format and submission of application materials. The state of Nevada, for example, does not request resume submissions for most jobs but instead asks you to create an online portfolio that includes many of the same sections as a resume. States such as New York and California, meanwhile, require you to pass an exam or assessment before you can apply for any state positions.

    Its important to familiarize yourself with your desired states expectations. Often, the state website offers a step-by-step guide on completing the application process. When you apply for a specific position, read the job description carefully. For government jobs, be sure to follow instructions carefully. Pay attention to the details such as how to format dates and what information to include. Failure to properly follow instructions could result in your application being dismissed entirely regardless of your qualifications.

    What Is A Government Job Resume

    Top Government Resume Templates &  Samples

    A government job resume is a formal document for application to a federal, provincial, or regional government position. It’s similar to other professional resumes regarding your skills and work history and has a strong focus on the essential requirements for the job. A government resume lists your essential and asset qualifications for the recruiting manager to identify quickly. You also include your formal education, professional profile, awards, and other government job information, if applicable, such as security clearance or language proficiency.

    Within government job postings, there is typically a list of crucial qualifications or skills followed by qualities that would be an asset. When you format your resume with a focus on the skills and abilities mentioned in the government job posting, you can improve your chances of making it through the screening process and landing an interview. Most federal and provincial jobs use an automated screening process, looking for keywords and phrases in your application.

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    Provide Other Requested Information

    This is the last section, and where you can provide the additional requested information as listed in the government job posting. You can include your language proficiency, such as being fluently bilingual or having another language as a native language. In this section, you can also add any security clearance specifications required for the position, if listed. Use this section to address any other criteria highlighted in the job posting when you can meet the requirement.

    Related:How To Feature Your Language Skills on a Resume

    Write An Extensive Professional Experience Section

    The professional experience section of your federal resume can determine whether or not youll be shortlisted for the position.

    Along with the regular details like the name of your previous employer, job title, and location, you need to include additional information like the following in your federal resumes professional experience section:

    • The full address of your previous company
    • Your previous supervisors name and contact information
    • The number of hours you worked per week
    • Your salary

    When you are describing your professional experience, ensure that you follow the given points:

    • Use figures and data points to illustrate your work whenever possible
    • Make use of power verbs
    • Use a healthy balance between brief paragraphs and bullet points to enhance readability
    • Frame your sentences using the cause and effect approach

    In a regular resume, simply listing a couple of bullet points is enough to showcase your potential.

    However, in your federal resume, you need to provide in-depth details of your past role and the responsibilities that came with it.

    Ensure to read the Qualifications & Evaluations tab thoroughly while reading the job listing so you know exactly how you must tailor your resume and on what grounds your resume will be evaluated.

    And unlike a regular resume, a federal resume does not have a key skills section. Thus, you must demonstrate your skills through your past experiences.

    Take a look at the following federal resume example for professional experience:


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