Hiring and Recruiting (not including CARES)


What are the three principal methods of hiring and recruiting in the Federal government and what are some of the key differences between them?

The three principal methods are:

  • Delegated Examining
  • Internal Merit Promotion
  • Excepted & Special Hiring Authority

Delegated Examining is open to all candidates and provides the first opportunity for career and career conditional appointments in the federal government. Under Merit Promotion, only individuals who are current or former permanent federal employees can apply. Under Excepted Authorities, you may hire individuals without competition and each authority has its own probationary period and time period to convert to permanent employee status.

BACK TO TOP

What are Selective Factors?

Selective Factors are those factors which are essential in the successful performance of a job. They are screen-out factors or minimum qualifications that are required for the job and cannot be learned on the job in a reasonable amount of time. Selective factors should be used with caution and they should only be used when they are clearly stated and supported in the position description. For example, a foreign language may be a selective factor for an International Affairs position.

BACK TO TOP

What are Quality Ranking Factors?

Quality Ranking Factors are competencies or Knowledges, Skills, and Abilities that are expected to enhance performance in a position. They determine the level of proficiency. Once the person is determined to be minimally qualified for the job, the Quality Ranking Factors are then used to determine the most qualified as compared to others who are also qualified.

BACK TO TOP

What is a Crediting Plan and how should it be used?

A Crediting Plan (or rating schedule/evaluation plan) is a plan developed to rate and rank candidates for a specific position. It is designed to measure the level at which eligible applicants possess the job related knowledge, skills, and abilities that are necessary for successful performance in the job to be filled. This is done through a review of the applicant's total education, training, experience, activities, awards, supervisory appraisals, and background in relation to each knowledge, skill, or ability identified.

BACK TO TOP

If a candidate applies for a position and they currently live outside the ‘area of consideration’ stated on the job announcement, are they eligible to be considered for the position?

No. If they apply, they would be considered ineligible because they are outside the area of consideration.

BACK TO TOP

What is FWS policy for submission of required materials in response to vacancy announcements?

All application materials must be submitted by the closing date of the announcement.

BACK TO TOP

Can you restrict a vacancy announcement to the local workstation?

Yes. Managers can establish areas of consideration but it must be broad enough to ensure the attraction of a diverse pool of highly qualified applicants.

BACK TO TOP

What do you do in the situation where you need to not only hire someone for a vacant position but you need that person to report to work immediately because of the nature of the work? When the candidate reports for work, she states she is 8 months pregnant and will need to be out for 12 weeks beginning 2 weeks after she starts. Your interviews were over the phone so you did not know this before. What could you have done or asked that would have prevented this?

Selections will be made solely on the basis of merit, fitness, and qualifications without regard to race, gender, color, religion, age, marital status, national origin, sexual orientation, non-disqualifying disability conditions, parental status, genetic information, political affiliation, or any other non-merit factors.

BACK TO TOP

Does the Selecting Official do the ranking of candidates after the announcement closes or does Human Resources do it?

The Human Resources Office will rank the candidates or convene a panel of subject matter experts to do the rating.

BACK TO TOP

What type of rating and ranking information can be released to applicants?

The following information may be released to an applicant: Whether he or she was qualified and/or referred for selection; who was selected; his or her own supervisory appraisal and rating on the ranking elements; procedures used to arrive at the final scores; and cut off scores; or any other information allowed by the Freedom of Information Act or Privacy Act.

BACK TO TOP

What questions can a supervisor answer if someone calls for a job reference on an employee? Can the supervisor state they would not hire that person again? Can he/she talk about performance or conduct issues they’ve had with that employee or if they’ve ever been on a Performance Improvement Plan?

Yes. A supervisor can tell a prospective employer they would not hire that person again. As far as performance or conduct issues go, it is safe to mention or answer if asked as long as what is stated is based on actual documentation that currently exists in the employee’s file. If the supervisor has never documented the performance or conduct issue, it would not be a good idea to mention it. Since Performance Improvement Plans are documented and maintained in the employee’s file, it would be appropriate to mention it. Most documents that are kept in the employee’s file are time limited and, after a specified period of time, must be destroyed. According to DOI policy, it is not permissible to refer to a past performance or conduct issue if the documentation for it no longer exists due to requirements to destroy it based on time limitations. As a final point and in rare circumstances, it is forbidden to provide any reference information on a current or past employee if there is a signed negotiated agreement or settlement in the employee’s file forbidding such a reference.

BACK TO TOP