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The process of getting a government job(Healthcare. Start date May 10th!)


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4 hours ago, flapgreen said:

The questionnaire is just checking boxes and multiple choice thing, right? 

Depends on the job posting but that was how it was for me.  Very simple.

 

The resume is where you need to match the job posting as identical as possible.

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Got a tentative offer at Ft Leonard Wood! 

Got the official final offer letter today. 

They agreed to my pay request. GS 12-7! 

19 minutes ago, Gally said:

Depends on the job posting but that was how it was for me.  Very simple.

 

The resume is where you need to match the job posting as identical as possible.

Great. That's very helpful. I wasn't sure which part to repeat the bullet point list on. I'll have to get a little creative with putting that in the resume. 

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If the questionaire is the type where you rate youself as Expert. Make sure your resume supports your claim. You can humble yourself out of a job...

As a PT, you should be able to land a job easily. There are normal Physical Therapy positions and some that support Wounded Warriors - more extreme challenges.

Depending upon scarcity, many medical positions have bonus pay on top of the locality pay.

If willing to move, look online for all military location maps. The more bases in the same area, the easier it is to move up or around. The VA is usually near the military hubs as well.

Pay will not be as much as a contractor, but you don't have to worry if you have a job every October 1st (start of the government funding year). Usually comparable to civilian hospitals though. No one gets into the govt to become rich. Stability is the draw. Couple of retirement options FERS and TSP. Good leave as already mentioned: 4 hours sick and 4 hours personal every two weeks. Personal bumps up to 6 and 8 every two weeks eventually. If truly sick, team members donate hours to each other frequently.

While applying and once you get into the system, get used to doing "mandatory" trainings, forms, and whatnot. The govt loves to have red tape for silliness. Just laugh and comply.

 

As for the military side of it:

Usually gratifying supporting those that have served. You're supporting the ~5% of the population that willingly put their life on the line for the nation. It's never about a business' bottom line. It's Mission and People.

DOD Medical is not like the regular military itself. They may wear a uniform, but don't ask any of them to march in a straight line. Medical is obviously top heavy / officers since everyone is eduated. Regular miltary is enlisted heavy with few officers per capita. It'll be the inverse of any movie you see.

Make sure to read if the positions you apply for have a mobility / readiness requirement. A civilian PT probably won't deploy, but read the fine print.

If you have never worked with the military before, get used to being called sir or ma'am even if you are extremely younger/older than the military person. Respect is the norm. Reciprocate.

Learn the ranks and call them as such. Much like Doctor, the titles are earned. In the military setting, the rank is usually mentioned over the profession. (Colonel Smith instead of Doctor Smith). Many teammates and patients will wear the rank long after they stop wearing the uniform.

You will meet great people and while many will be in pain when you are servicing them, they all usually have a good story to tell. When you sit with a WW2 Vet still wearing their service cap with medals on it...you will remember why you do what you do.

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5 hours ago, Riffraff said:

If the questionaire is the type where you rate youself as Expert. Make sure your resume supports your claim. You can humble yourself out of a job...

As a PT, you should be able to land a job easily. There are normal Physical Therapy positions and some that support Wounded Warriors - more extreme challenges.

Depending upon scarcity, many medical positions have bonus pay on top of the locality pay.

If willing to move, look online for all military location maps. The more bases in the same area, the easier it is to move up or around. The VA is usually near the military hubs as well.

Pay will not be as much as a contractor, but you don't have to worry if you have a job every October 1st (start of the government funding year). Usually comparable to civilian hospitals though. No one gets into the govt to become rich. Stability is the draw. Couple of retirement options FERS and TSP. Good leave as already mentioned: 4 hours sick and 4 hours personal every two weeks. Personal bumps up to 6 and 8 every two weeks eventually. If truly sick, team members donate hours to each other frequently.

While applying and once you get into the system, get used to doing "mandatory" trainings, forms, and whatnot. The govt loves to have red tape for silliness. Just laugh and comply.

 

As for the military side of it:

Usually gratifying supporting those that have served. You're supporting the ~5% of the population that willingly put their life on the line for the nation. It's never about a business' bottom line. It's Mission and People.

DOD Medical is not like the regular military itself. They may wear a uniform, but don't ask any of them to march in a straight line. Medical is obviously top heavy / officers since everyone is eduated. Regular miltary is enlisted heavy with few officers per capita. It'll be the inverse of any movie you see.

Make sure to read if the positions you apply for have a mobility / readiness requirement. A civilian PT probably won't deploy, but read the fine print.

If you have never worked with the military before, get used to being called sir or ma'am even if you are extremely younger/older than the military person. Respect is the norm. Reciprocate.

Learn the ranks and call them as such. Much like Doctor, the titles are earned. In the military setting, the rank is usually mentioned over the profession. (Colonel Smith instead of Doctor Smith). Many teammates and patients will wear the rank long after they stop wearing the uniform.

You will meet great people and while many will be in pain when you are servicing them, they all usually have a good story to tell. When you sit with a WW2 Vet still wearing their service cap with medals on it...you will remember why you do what you do.

This is excellent. I've spent my career in geriatrics and had many WW2 guys over the years. Now starting to get more Vietnam guys. 

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You're definitely not getting rich in the private sector of Healthcare either. I'm just looking for stability and the autonomy to be the best therapist I can be. 

Edited by flapgreen
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Just talked to a former classmate who's been in the government side for the last 8 years and is at GS 13.  Echoed most of the same sentiments as in here. Just need to get in the system any way I can and then can go wherever after a year. As I expected, she said the SOCOM jobs are highly competitive and I'd likely have to already be in the system to get one of those. 

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Applied to 5 listings. 2 agency wide PT listings where I could check the locations, 2 VA jobs in Texas and Louisville, 1 SOCOM job. I'll check the site weekly for new listings.  I have plenty of time to wait. Just started a new job after leaving one of 8 years. 

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20 hours ago, flapgreen said:

Applied to 5 listings. 2 agency wide PT listings where I could check the locations, 2 VA jobs in Texas and Louisville, 1 SOCOM job. I'll check the site weekly for new listings.  I have plenty of time to wait. Just started a new job after leaving one of 8 years. 

I used to have USAJobs email me every week with results of a saved search so I could see everything new a little easier.

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I recently got a government job (not federal though). The pay is less  but the benefits are pretty damn good. I have to decide if I want to opt in the pension retirement plan or the the investment retirement plan. I'd lean the pension plan but they aren't as good as they used to be. 

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2 hours ago, eoMMan said:

I recently got a government job (not federal though). The pay is less  but the benefits are pretty damn good. I have to decide if I want to opt in the pension retirement plan or the the investment retirement plan. I'd lean the pension plan but they aren't as good as they used to be. 

What's the difference 

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  • 2 weeks later...
4 hours ago, flapgreen said:

Got through to the next level on the SOCOM job. Got an email saying it was referred to the hiring manager. 

I have had that happen a few times where nothing came of it. I’d say it more often does not lead to an interview for me, but I can’t imagine that is the norm.

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22 minutes ago, Cold Dead Hands said:

I have had that happen a few times where nothing came of it. I’d say it more often does not lead to an interview for me, but I can’t imagine that is the norm.

Yeah, I'm sure I'll see that plenty of times, which is fine.  If I can keep getting to the level where it's passed onto the hiring manager, I'll find something eventually.  I'm in no rush to move away, unless it's worth it. 

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21 minutes ago, Cold Dead Hands said:

I have had that happen a few times where nothing came of it. I’d say it more often does not lead to an interview for me, but I can’t imagine that is the norm.

Part of this will depend on how many people were referred to the hiring manager (or on the cert as we say). @flapgreen indicated he thinks these are jobs without a lot of applicants so he’s got a chance at an interview. 

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47 minutes ago, dgreen said:

Part of this will depend on how many people were referred to the hiring manager (or on the cert as we say). @flapgreen indicated he thinks these are jobs without a lot of applicants so he’s got a chance at an interview. 

I would think the SOCOM job has a lot of applicants, but I can't be sure.   I just don't think a lot of therapists know much about these jobs, who aren't already in the system. I know it was never talked about as an option when I was in school. 

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  • 5 weeks later...

This is definitely going to take a while, but I now have references from 2 different people already work on bases. Hoping that helps some. Applied to about 7 or 8 jobs so far. A couple referred but nothing yet. 

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On 8/5/2020 at 5:04 PM, Gally said:

It is for sure a game.  It goes against everything I have done with regards to a resume.  The longer the better trying to capture all of the points on the job posting.  Try and use exact phrasing from the job posting in your experience sections.  

 

There are also two different tracks depending on what type of job.  There is the GS track (essentially pay bands) or NH track.  The NH track is more technical (engineering) type jobs and has more technical training requirements but has less pay bands that are wider so it usually pays better.  The type with be listed on the job posting.  It may say pay scale of  low GS6 if its a GS track or NH-2 if its that type.  All that meana is how the pay scales work.

Got a question about this.  I've obviously been filling out the resume correctly to get to the next level at hiring manager, but it feels like such a weird resume to write out.  I mean I get that including everything from the bullet list is necessary to get passed on, but what then? All the hiring manager is seeing is basically a copy and paste of the job posting requirements and me saying I've son that. Should I add in extra stuff at the end of all of that like I would on a regular resume as well? 

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2 hours ago, flapgreen said:

Got a question about this.  I've obviously been filling out the resume correctly to get to the next level at hiring manager, but it feels like such a weird resume to write out.  I mean I get that including everything from the bullet list is necessary to get passed on, but what then? All the hiring manager is seeing is basically a copy and paste of the job posting requirements and me saying I've son that. Should I add in extra stuff at the end of all of that like I would on a regular resume as well? 

Depends on the hiring process.  If tge resume gets you to the interview phase then it doesn't really matter.  If there is still another phase of resume review then it probably doesn't hurt to add other items into the document if it helps sell you.  Typically you don't get a chance to redo the resume after you starting the process.  Yoy submit through the site and then you either make it to the next phase or you don't.  If you make it then whatever you initially turned in is what is used through that cycle.

 

When I did the process I submitted one resume and never had a chance to revise or add anything.  I am not sure if that helps or not.

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15 hours ago, Gally said:

Depends on the hiring process.  If tge resume gets you to the interview phase then it doesn't really matter.  If there is still another phase of resume review then it probably doesn't hurt to add other items into the document if it helps sell you.  Typically you don't get a chance to redo the resume after you starting the process.  Yoy submit through the site and then you either make it to the next phase or you don't.  If you make it then whatever you initially turned in is what is used through that cycle.

 

When I did the process I submitted one resume and never had a chance to revise or add anything.  I am not sure if that helps or not.

Yes, it does. I've got referred for 6 positions so far.  I just want it to look good for the next person that sees it and not just a copy and pasted version of the job description. Going to add some more things in

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  • 1 month later...

Still waiting patiently. Actually 3 jobs posted over the past month at bases within 2 hours of here. May end up having to go to middle of nowhere for a year and then transferring a year later. 

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

A couple weeks and no word from Ft Knox. No idea how to feel about that. Holidays may have something to do with that. Guy who interviewed me said he would be able to contact me directly again and it would be through some DOD department. Also could tell the government went back to work today. Got a couple emails at same time saying not selected on positions I didn't get interviews for. Phone interview at base in Missouri on Friday. 

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3 minutes ago, flapgreen said:

A couple weeks and no word from Ft Knox. No idea how to feel about that. Holidays may have something to do with that. Guy who interviewed me said he would be able to contact me directly again and it would be through some DOD department. Also could tell the government went back to work today. Got a couple emails at same time saying not selected on positions I didn't get interviews for. Phone interview at base in Missouri on Friday. 

I went 1 month before I heard anything back.

I was in florida for Christmas and got a phone call offering me the job.  The rec closed before Thanksgiving

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1 minute ago, belljr said:

I went 1 month before I heard anything back.

I was in florida for Christmas and got a phone call offering me the job.  The rec closed before Thanksgiving

That's reassuring.  I went into this knowing it would likely take a while. Out of the 4 jobs I've applied to so far, I've gotten two interviews, so I feel positive about that. It's just a matter of time. 

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Just now, flapgreen said:

That's reassuring.  I went into this knowing it would likely take a while. Out of the 4 jobs I've applied to so far, I've gotten two interviews, so I feel positive about that. It's just a matter of time. 

I will say, I was in a little different boat though. I was already working in the building and I actually didn't have to interview

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2 minutes ago, belljr said:

I will say, I was in a little different boat though. I was already working in the building and I actually didn't have to interview

Yeah, I'm making the move from private Healthcare to government.  I knew I'd have last priority to most of the jobs I applied to, if other government employees had applied. Just gonna keep applying to positions as they come available. Location isn't important right now. I can transfer later. 

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12 minutes ago, flapgreen said:

A couple weeks and no word from Ft Knox. No idea how to feel about that. Holidays may have something to do with that. Guy who interviewed me said he would be able to contact me directly again and it would be through some DOD department. Also could tell the government went back to work today. Got a couple emails at same time saying not selected on positions I didn't get interviews for. Phone interview at base in Missouri on Friday. 

Give them a few days to sort through things. I'm working as a contractor for NAVAIR and, yes, my area was basically totally shut down for two weeks.

When I actually worked on base, my building was literally on shutdown and only authorized people were doing machinery maintenance and overhaul.

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Just now, flapgreen said:

Yeah, I'm making the move from private Healthcare to government.  I knew I'd have last priority to most of the jobs I applied to, if other government employees had applied. Just gonna keep applying to positions as they come available. Location isn't important right now. I can transfer later. 

It's different in different department and agencies.  But they will have recs for current government employees only and open recs for anyone.  I was not a government employee I was a contractor.  But in my neck of the woods, you prove your worth as a contractor then they flip you eventually

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1 minute ago, belljr said:

It's different in different department and agencies.  But they will have recs for current government employees only and open recs for anyone.  I was not a government employee I was a contractor.  But in my neck of the woods, you prove your worth as a contractor then they flip you eventually

Definitely. There aren't a lot positions for my type of job on base for civilians, so I had to commit to moving wherever a position opened up.  I'm 43 now and the private sector of Healthcare is really unraveling in my field.  As soon as I heard about this type of opportunity, the family and I decided to go for it. 

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24 minutes ago, flapgreen said:

A couple weeks and no word from Ft Knox. No idea how to feel about that. Holidays may have something to do with that. Guy who interviewed me said he would be able to contact me directly again and it would be through some DOD department. Also could tell the government went back to work today. Got a couple emails at same time saying not selected on positions I didn't get interviews for. Phone interview at base in Missouri on Friday. 

Not sure if you have looked at a map, but Fort Leonard Wood is literally in the middle of nowhere - deep in the Ozarks. You would be an hour and a half from the closest decent city (Springfield).

If you love to fish and hike, you will love it here. If there is ever an attack from foreign soldiers this is the last base they will attack. The rednecks in the Ozarks would take them out before the soldiers would ever have to lift a finger.

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1 hour ago, ChiefD said:

Not sure if you have looked at a map, but Fort Leonard Wood is literally in the middle of nowhere - deep in the Ozarks. You would be an hour and a half from the closest decent city (Springfield).

If you love to fish and hike, you will love it here. If there is ever an attack from foreign soldiers this is the last base they will attack. The rednecks in the Ozarks would take them out before the soldiers would ever have to lift a finger.

Yeah, I'm aware. We've committed to going anywhere we need to go to get in the system. I grew up in Kentucky, so I'm used to it. Ultimately, we want to end up back in Florida on base but getting on down there is tougher straight out of the private sector. Hoping Ft Knox calls, because it's only about 2 hours or so from where we're at currently. 

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4 hours ago, flapgreen said:

Interview with the 2nd job in the books.  Now waiting to hear back from either one of them 

Good luck! 

We're already in, and a co worker and I interviewed for the same job back in October. She has ten years more experience in this specific field and they were looking for that specific experience. It wasn't a doubt that she would get the job (I'm good with it, the interview was mostly for practice). She finally was offered the job yesterday. For an internal hire.  

Just to say if you don't hear anything for a while, don't get discouraged.

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21 minutes ago, -OZ- said:

Good luck! 

We're already in, and a co worker and I interviewed for the same job back in October. She has ten years more experience in this specific field and they were looking for that specific experience. It wasn't a doubt that she would get the job (I'm good with it, the interview was mostly for practice). She finally was offered the job yesterday. For an internal hire.  

Just to say if you don't hear anything for a while, don't get discouraged.

Thanks for the encouragement. Are you a contractor on post? 

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I missed this thread until now.  I've been in military healthcare for almost 20 years now including almost the last 10 as a GS, but in a supporting role as opposed to direct patient care.  Good luck, but if you haven't been warned ahead of time, military health care is a very unique animal. Having a gallows humor helps. If you ever find yourself in the National Capital Region, let me know.

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13 minutes ago, Charlie Steiner said:

I missed this thread until now.  I've been in military healthcare for almost 20 years now including almost the last 10 as a GS, but in a supporting role as opposed to direct patient care.  Good luck, but if you haven't been warned ahead of time, military health care is a very unique animal. Having a gallows humor helps. If you ever find yourself in the National Capital Region, let me know.

Appreciate that. I'll be in direct patient care once I'm in. I have a buddy who works at Eglin who's given me the rundown. I'll love it

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27 minutes ago, flapgreen said:

Thanks for the encouragement. Are you a contractor on post? 

No, I'm a federal employee.

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4 minutes ago, -OZ- said:

No, I'm a federal employee.

Oh OK. I read it wrong. You're both already in the system but interviewed for a different job. 

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Just now, flapgreen said:

Appreciate that. I'll be in direct patient care once I'm in. I have a buddy who works at Eglin who's given me the rundown. I'll love it

The issue that bothers me the most is that when a new commander comes in every two years, many times they want to make changes for the sake of making changes.  Half of the ones we've had in my tenure here have reminded me of CPT Stillman from Stripes.

Seriously, though, the providers and nurses who work in military healthcare have an added level of responsibility, since one of the carrots that recruiters dangle in front of potential recruits is great healthcare for life, which is where you come in. I always mention that to the new providers we get, hoping they'll cling to that personal sense of duty when they feel pushed to their limit with the bureaucracy.  The patients and staff are usually great, but sometimes you'll run into policies and procedures that don't make sense and slow you down.

 

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  • flapgreen changed the title to The process of getting a government job(Healthcare. Start date May 10th!)

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