A forum for recruiters in federal government to discuss best practices for sourcing the best candidates for openings in federal agencies and for those who may want to post announcements to federal recruiters about career fairs, conferences, etc.
The Resume Place...
September 30, 2011 at 1:50 pm #142615
To the delight of many, it’s been over 3 months since my last post. Back in late June, OPM advertised an SES position for the Assistant Director, Integrated Hiring Solutions (Announcement 11-SES-324-LEK). It opened June 28th and closed on July 11th. It was the perfect role for me and I had to apply.
Only one problem; I needed an SES federal resume that addressed 5 Executive Core Qualifications: Leading Change, Leading People, Results Driven, Business Acumen, and Building Coalitions.
If you look at my LinkedIn profile, you’ll notice a bunch of bullet points in the rough form of a resume. Nothing special and certainly not awe inspiring for an SES position within the federal government. Ironically, when I created QuickHire, my vision was to rid the world of resumes. More or less, I failed.
Fortunate for me (and the reason I don’t burn bridges, ha ha), I knew someone who’s business is built around federal resumes and the SES format is their specialty. So I made a call to Kathryn Troutman, founder of The Resume Place (http://www.resume-place.com). I’ve known Kathryn for over a decade. While we hunted for business in the same sector we never competed against one another.
The Resume Place has been in operation for almost 40 years and now has over 20 employees most of which are resume writers. Starting out, The Resume Place helped law students write their resumes for Corporate America. Soon after inception, The Resume Place began helping people fill out the KSA’s for the SF 171.
Over the years, Kathryn & Associates have written several books on the federal hiring process, created numerous training classes for applicants, Hiring managers and HR alike. Kathryn’s first book “The Federal Resume Guidebook” is now in its 5th edition (I have a signed copy). Kathryn has written 6 books (20 editions) on federal hiring cover military, students, etc. The most surprising thing to me is that The Resume Place has reinvented the federal resume format several times. It’s like an ever evolving science and it works!
Kathryn was excited about the OPM vacancy announcement too and matched me up with Diane Hudson Burns. Kathryn and Diane had just completed a new book and training course on SES Hiring, so the timing couldn’t have been better.
While we never met face to face, Diane, who lives in Idaho was excellent at guiding me through the process of developing an federal SES resume. She is organized, experienced, knows federal hiring and is easy to work with. She started with the requirements of the position and why I felt it was for me. She interviewed me at least 4 times and numerous emails eliciting my work experience and anecdotes. She had a process and guided me through it. In the end we had to cut out some really good material to meet the 5 page limit. The best part was that working with Diane was like going down memory lane. I have accomplished a lot in my career and it was good to document.
I applied on Monday July 11th. I had a USAJOBS account and uploaded my resume to my profile. I clicked the apply link and it took me over to USA Staffing. Did you know that USA Staffing doesn’t allow single sign on from USAJOBS and that you have to create a separate account?
I had to answer 1 question (yes/no) asking if I was qualified for the position. I answered “Yes”. I uploaded my resume (again), my cover letter and logged out. I received an automated email response saying that my application had been received. On July 22nd, I received another email that I was eligible for the position and that my resume would be sent to the Executive Review Panel. On August 4th, I was “recommended for consideration” by the panel and sent to the hiring manager and on August 5th I was scheduled for an interview on August 22nd with Angie Bailey. For those of you, who follow my posts, might recall that I haven’t been the kindest when it comes to Angie or OPM. I guess what goes around, comes around.
Take note, that with all of my baggage, I was deemed Best Qualified for this SES position at OPM and I owe it all to The Resume Place and especially Diane Hudson Burns. Diane also spent time preparing me for a structured interview.
The interview (although not really structured) was friendly and I thought it went well. I was treated pretty well. Angie Bailey even acknowledged they read my posts. In all, there were 52 candidates for the position. OPM selected only 5 for interviews. On September 8th, I was notified that while I was among the best qualified and interviewed, OPM selected someone else. Although disappointed in not being selected, closure is a good thing and I hope all federal agencies are as timely with their disposition letters as OPM was with me.
Overall, I was satisfied with the process. While I can’t disagree more with OPM’s decisions of late, I will no longer refer to them as anything other than OPM. My version of the Treaty at Versailles.
But that won’t stop my posts. I’ve bottled up quite a few drafts while the hiring process played out for this position. To give OPM credit (more like a mulligan), they could NOT have picked a better time to crash USA Staffing and lose 70,000 applications. I digress.
The best thing about working with Kathryn Troutman and Dianne Hudson Burns of the Resume Place is that I now have a 5 page resume with what amounts to “the OPM stamp of approval” that can be reused for other SES positions. A job well done!
November 3, 2011 at 8:44 pm #142617
Paula B GolladayParticipant
I have used not only all of Kathryn's books when reviewing resumes for 100's of candidates over the past 2 years, I also highly recommend her books to as many individuals as possible. I clearly state that my recommendation is mine alone and not sanctioned by the IRS, not one person has come back to me saying that the books were useless. Most come back and praise how useful the book (s) was to them in creating a better resume. Note to all a federal resume is almost never written in bullet format by doing so you critically limit yourself be found best qualified or highly qualified.
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