Getting a job within the jurisdiction of the federal government can seem like a daunting task. However, you can apply to most positions in a government job much like any other — a simple resume. However, what a federal resume is, and what distinguishes it from other kinds of resumes is important. Read on to learn more about what a federal resume is through our federal resume guide.
What is a Federal Resume?
A federal resume is a resume used specifically to gain employment within the federal government. You can apply for a federal job with this type of resume, or by using an OF612 form. An OF612 is also known as the Optional Application of Federal Employment, and is a simplified application form that is more useful for applicants with little experience, and asserts the minimum amount of information necessary for a particular job.
OF612 forms are usually submitted in lower level federal jobs such as librarians, police officers, and post workers. It’s also more convenient for newly graduated students or those with little experience in their chosen field. While the OF612 is a convenient option, no matter the position, a federal resume is still the preferred method.
There are a number of national databases that serve as federal resume guides and post information on job openings within the federal government. Writing a resume for one of these positions may seem like an undertaking, but the features you want to showcase the most will be any necessary skills and requirements you have. Include your job history, skill sets, and personal achievements.
What to Include in a Federal Resume?
When writing a federal resume, you’ll need to include a lot more specific information than in any other type of resume. You’ll need to list at least five past positions and for every previous position you list, you must include:
- Start and end dates that include the month and year
- How many hours you worked per week
- Position title and pertinent job responsibilities
- Accomplishments from your job positions
- Experiences that address every requirement for the federal position you’re trying to fill
Government positions also like to see any volunteer work you’ve done, as well as any positions you hold within the community.
How to Format a Federal Resume?
Now that you know what basic information should be included in a federal resume, we should address formatting and organization. Make sure you can grab the attention of an HR manager right away with proper formatting.
- List your job experience in reverse chronological order, with your most recent experience first.
- Provide greater detail than you normally would to offer more relevant information for every aspect of the position.
- Show your experiences and accomplishments under the job where you earned them instead of in a separate section.
- Use bullet or paragraph format to describe each of your experiences under each job position.
- Choose consistent and similar terminology across the board. Avoid acronyms or terms that aren’t easily understood.
While you may have previously been employed in the military or other branch of the government, you should avoid using any jargon that may be hard to understand. Often, the first people to look through a stack of resumes are laymen.
Length of a Federal Resume
What a federal resume does is provide government agencies all the information they need to make the best decision. More information means a longer resume. Most federal resumes are several pages long, as opposed to a single page resume most other job positions require. In fact, it’s not uncommon for a federal resume that covers ten years of employment to reach up to eight pages.
While you might think this means you need to provide lengthy job descriptions, this isn’t always true. You want to show only the most relevant experiences and write everything in a concise professional manner.
Resume Pundits Can Help
Hopefully, you’ve learned a little more about what a federal resume is. While they can be a confusing, complex world to navigate, if you’re interested in a federal position, Resume Pundits can help. Reach out to our team to find out how we can help you stand out from the crowd.