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exotiq  
#1 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 10:07:30 AM(UTC)
exotiq

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I'm so frustrated.  This economy is lousy!  I have been unemployed for almost a year now because of it!  I still keep asking myself, "Why did I think that it would be a good idea to leave my secure, permanent status federal position in 2006, to take a 2-year term, with the expectation of going back to permanent status?!"

I was a Legal Assistant (OA) with DOJ's U.S. Attorney's Office for over 5 years.  I was getting burnt out in my position and wanted a change, and when my boyfriend at the time, suggested that we move, I started putting in for federal transfers and other positions in the new location. 

I end up taking a Secretary (OA) position with NASA (Kennedy Space Center), thinking that it would boost my resume....That was a mistake!  They even tried to reassure me (Of course, they couldn't put it in writing) that I would be able to go back to permanent status once I completed my 2-year term appointment. 

Well, this was in 2006....Some time in early 2008 (7 months prior to the end of my 2-year appointment), we're told that our Administrative/clerical positions (GS-07 and below) would be basically discontinued and would be replaced with contract positions.  Great!  Just what I wanted to risk my federal career for! 

I was determined to find another federal position, but time ran out and I couldn't do it.  So, I ended up unemployed for a month.  Swallowing my pride, I ended up taking one of those contract positions, that paid me $5 less per hour, without benefits (or any that I could afford on that salary).  I worked that job for about 13 months until I was laid off again 2 days prior to Christmas 2009.

I realize now that I made the mistake to take a position with an agency too unstable with regard to maintaining it's workforce -- NASA.....Let that be a lesson to any of you --- Unless you're an engineer, don't bother with them!

I have been desperate to get back into the federal civilian service, but to know avail.--vested and all!  I haven't had a job interview in over 2 years! 

I finally found a job advertised for a LEGAL ASST (OA) with DOJ's ICE (Orlando) ...I'm thinking, "I should be a shoe-in since I've already done this job," except it was for the U.S. Attorney's Office. 

Today...I get a reply that says that "I didn't meet the minimum qualifications for the job"....What??!!!!  ...Are you kidding me????  

How is it that I didn't meet the minimum qualifications for a job I already performed for over 5 years???!!!


I'm so frustrated!!!  ...And concerned that I won't be able to find anything by the time my unemployment runs out!  I've even had to resort to trying to find a lame minimum wage job and so far nothing!   I used to work for the state of Florida too....Over 10.5 years...I can't find anything there either!

...I'm so frustrated I could scream!  How does this happen?  I even have an AA in Information Technology/Visual Communication.

I can't see how a former federal employee with over 7.5 years of federal civilian service can't get a job?!  Could it be my age?  I just turned 45...but I don't even look 35 -- So I suppose I look 'old on paper'????  ...I can't figure it out!

Does someone know something that I don't???

bmj2  
#2 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 10:16:18 AM(UTC)
bmj2

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I wish I had a good reason to give you, but it's not that uncommon to "not meet minimum qualifications" according to HR.  I've even been told I wasn't qualified for a job I was doing.  Unfortunately it has a lot to do with who does the evaluation, what keywords they are looking for, and their understanding of the English language.  The best I can suggest is contact the HR person on the announcement and get an explanation.  When they re-read it, it often changes to "qualified."
sherco  
#3 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 10:23:07 AM(UTC)
sherco

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Sounds to me like you didn't have the right terminology in your resume.
kgkistari  
#4 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 12:04:53 PM(UTC)
kgkistari

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Usually, when you've done the job but "don't meet the minimum qualifications" for the job, it means you didn't write up the application very well.  Each job looks for specific terms in the application.  If you didn't use those, you won't qualify.
Ruanne  
#5 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 12:58:07 PM(UTC)
Ruanne

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What the other guys all said. You can be as qualified as the sky is blue, but if you don't spell it out the way they are looking for, you aren't going to be considered qualified. You need to parse job announcements, OPM descriptions, and your target agency's website. You need to echo some of that phrasing (obviously without lying about your qualifications!) Each application and resume should be targeted for the specific job series and agency. You need to spell things out in detail, using specific examples. Your Federal resume should be 4 or 5 pages long. I always recommend Kathryn Troutman's book "Federal Resumes." Because I was just like you a year ago, jumping up and down that they considered me not qualified for a job I had done in the military. After revising my application strategies I started getting Qualified Not Selected. That's progress, let's you know you are doing it right. After that, it's just a waiting game, apply apply apply and eventually you'll make the top of the list. Beer
BGC84  
#6 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 1:22:10 PM(UTC)
BGC84

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exotiq wrote:
I'm so frustrated.  This economy is lousy!  I have been unemployed for almost a year now because of it!  I still keep asking myself, "Why did I think that it would be a good idea to leave my secure, permanent status federal position in 2006, to take a 2-year term, with the expectation of going back to permanent status?!"I was a Legal Assistant (OA) with DOJ's U.S. Attorney's Office for over 5 years.  I was getting burnt out in my position and wanted a change, and when my boyfriend at the time, suggested that we move, I started putting in for federal transfers and other positions in the new location.  I end up taking a Secretary (OA) position with NASA (Kennedy Space Center), thinking that it would boost my resume....That was a mistake!  They even tried to reassure me (Of course, they couldn't put it in writing) that I would be able to go back to permanent status once I completed my 2-year term appointment.  Well, this was in 2006....Some time in early 2008 (7 months prior to the end of my 2-year appointment), we're told that our Administrative/clerical positions (GS-07 and below) would be basically discontinued and would be replaced with contract positions.  Great!  Just what I wanted to risk my federal career for!  I was determined to find another federal position, but time ran out and I couldn't do it.  So, I ended up unemployed for a month.  Swallowing my pride, I ended up taking one of those contract positions, that paid me $5 less per hour, without benefits (or any that I could afford on that salary).  I worked that job for about 13 months until I was laid off again 2 days prior to Christmas 2009.I realize now that I made the mistake to take a position with an agency too unstable with regard to maintaining it's workforce -- NASA.....Let that be a lesson to any of you --- Unless you're an engineer, don't bother with them!I have been desperate to get back into the federal civilian service, but to know avail.--vested and all!  I haven't had a job interview in over 2 years!  I finally found a job advertised for a LEGAL ASST (OA) with DOJ's ICE (Orlando) ...I'm thinking, "I should be a shoe-in since I've already done this job," except it was for the U.S. Attorney's Office.  Today...I get a reply that says that "I didn't meet the minimum qualifications for the job"....What??!!!!  ...Are you kidding me????   How is it that I didn't meet the minimum qualifications for a job I already performed for over 5 years???!!!I'm so frustrated!!!  ...And concerned that I won't be able to find anything by the time my unemployment runs out!  I've even had to resort to trying to find a lame minimum wage job and so far nothing!   I used to work for the state of Florida too....Over 10.5 years...I can't find anything there either!...I'm so frustrated I could scream!  How does this happen?  I even have an AA in Information Technology/Visual Communication.I can't see how a former federal employee with over 7.5 years of federal civilian service can't get a job?!  Could it be my age?  I just turned 45...but I don't even look 35 -- So I suppose I look 'old on paper'????  ...I can't figure it out!Does someone know something that I don't???


Sounds to me like you're just not having any luck because of going up against vet preference. No matter what is said, or how much people that are usually vets try to deny it, vet preference has become the make or break in most cases now because there are so many with vet points applying now.
shockdj  
#7 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 1:42:35 PM(UTC)
shockdj

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I agree with what most others have said.  Unfortunately, the only advice I can give is to read the vacancy announcement thoroughly and make sure that you explicitly address every requirement listed using the same terminology.  Regarding veterans preference, a veteran could end up being selected over you, but if your status says did not meet minimum qualifications, that has yet to come into play.  If that were the case, I would expect to see something like referred but not selected or you were not in the group of most qualified candidates.  Good luck with your future applications.
Will  
#8 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 3:03:35 PM(UTC)
Will

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Remeber the people that are looking over the resumes are just people and make mistakes.  There should be a contact number on the job write a quick email explaining where they made the mistake.
 
Had this happen on recent resume I sent in and got a reply back a few days later that they had corrected it and submitted my name and changed my status.
computerscott2  
#9 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 8:04:50 PM(UTC)
computerscott2

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BGC84 wrote:

Sounds to me like you're just not having any luck because of going up against vet preference. No matter what is said, or how much people that are usually vets try to deny it, vet preference has become the make or break in most cases now because there are so many with vet points applying now.
Not meeting the qualification is different than not making the cutoff. Vets preference does not affect not meeting the qualification.  Are you applying for both internal and external openings? If you worked 7.5 years, did you ever achieve career (permanent) status? Since you are trying to get back in you should ALWAYS apply under both announcements if they are advertised both internally and externally. Also do you mention in your applications (or check the box) that (if you have had career status) that you are applying as a reinstatement eligible? If you apply for the internal postings you do not have to worry about vet preference.
It sounds to me like either your resume is too short or you did not answer the questions fully. The fed game is a frustrating one, but there is success in numbers.
 
computerscott2  
#10 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 8:12:21 PM(UTC)
computerscott2

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Read these old posts, you may have to start from page 1 of them. They may help you find your errors or at least give you a leg up on the competition.
 
Posts for newbies. If you want to get ahead start on the federal job process read these posts. They have a wealth of information that will help you get started. Before asking questions, do a search and see if it has been answered before. You would be surprised at the number of times the same questions keep coming up again and again. There is gold in these fedsoup hills, you just have to be willing to mine for it. A lot of miners don’t mind helping the newbies, but if a newbie shows no effort on their part, they can be overlooked quickly. Most importantly, be prepared for long periods of waiting. The fed job process is not for people with immediate gratification needs. It will be a long process, if you happen to luck out and get a shorter process than most, then it is a bonus. Good luck in your search.

 Look for the comments that I posted and ignore any negative comments. I am not tooting my own horn here, but wish to share my experiences to help you avoid the frustrations I experienced.

http://www.federalsoup.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=21081&KW=truths&title=how-to-stay-sane-in-the-fed-job-process

 

http://federalsoup.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=8868&KW=truths&title=8-truths-about-government-job-application-process

 

Try this link too:
http://www.federalsoup.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=20395&title=the-view-from-the-ranking-panel

Here is another post (not mine) to look at for resume specifics:

http://federalsoup.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=9869&KW=resume&title=how-to-write-a-winning-resume

computerscott22010-12-02 04:29:27
Brothaman  
#11 Posted : Wednesday, December 01, 2010 11:07:50 PM(UTC)
Brothaman

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exotiq, I had the same issue, I left my old job, and then I reapplied for it. I was rated as unQ, I ask the question.....how do NOT qualify for a job, that you did for 5 years. They got defensive, I was nice about it, and somehow  I was rated qualified.
jfwilder  
#12 Posted : Thursday, December 02, 2010 12:48:44 AM(UTC)
jfwilder

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You are entitled to a "debrief"...but you must request one.  You may find out that way why you didn't qualify.  I didn't know about debriefs until recently, but they are a valid way to know exactly why you weren't selected.
ShariL  
#13 Posted : Thursday, December 02, 2010 10:43:02 PM(UTC)
ShariL

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I feel your pain.  I had to take a contractor job before I was able to get back into government.  I was a contractor doing resume reviewing though so I can provide some insight.  The vacancy's title does not tell the whole story.  When completing your resume you must read the entire announcement.  The duties say one thing, but the specialized experience requirements may say something else.  Address the specialized experience using the experience you possess (honestly of course).  It is also helpful to read the qualification requirements from OPM's website.  Now that most agencies are using USASTAFFING, resumes must make it through an automated filter before a human touches the application.  As much as it pains me to say it, buzzwords and key phrases will be helpful here.  Also, make sure you provide complete dates for any experience blocks.  Do not just put years.  Staffing specialists need the months.  Another secret:  If the position you are describing contains more than one kind of specialized experience (i.e., legal secretary and office automation) make sure you divide the experience block and identify just how much time you spent performing each type of work.  In the world of staffing you must have one year of specialized experience at the next lower level.  If you have not provided months and/or percentages of time, there is no way for the staffer to find the 12 months.  I hope this helps.  Good Luck.
exotiq  
#14 Posted : Friday, December 03, 2010 4:32:49 AM(UTC)
exotiq

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Hey Guys!  I followed some of your tips and advice and I decided to contact the HR dept to inquire as to why I didn't meet the minimum qualifications. 

The agent was able to confirm that I supplied the required paperwork, so he advised that I needed to follow-up in writing and demand that I be reinstated for consideration, which I did right after we hung up.

After about an hour or so later, the agent called me back and told me that after they reviewed my documents in further detail, he discovered what the problem was; 

The SF-50 used to submit for the position was the very last one I had on record, which came from NASA, my last federal employer, however, since I was hired as a 2-Year Term Appointee, the special coding on the SF-50 form indicated that, which deemed me ineligible to apply to a position that would accept former federal employees with reinstatement status.  Apparently, 2-Year Term Appointees are not considered to be 'reinstatement eligible'.  This is something I was never aware of and no one at NASA informed me of this. ...Conveniently?  hmmm....makes me wonder....

He also tipped me off that for future reference, I need to use the last SF-50 from my previous federal employer where I was a permanent status, career service civilian employee (The US Attorney's office, where I was a Legal Assistant (OA) for over 5 years).

Interesting, isn't it?!  ...I bet you guys didn't know that, did ya??  ...I wonder how many people know this information?  ...It was certainly an eye-opener for me!!!

I was shocked to learn the truth!  ...And no one ever told me this before???  ....If I had known this, I might have been able to resume my civilian federal service a long time ago, since it's been over 2 years now that I've been trying to get reinstated in federal government! 

To think with all of the applications that I submitted in the past and up to now, must be over 100, I was applying to jobs that were hiring 'reinstatement eligibles'...sometimes ONLY...and me, knowing that I was one of them, expecting to have a shot and the whole while, I was using the wrong SF-50?!!!!  

Well, now that I know, I quickly found the right SF-50 and replaced it with the one from NASA in my USAJOBS profile, and now it will be a waiting game to look out for the next vacancy announcement that comes up, so that I can try yet again! 

...I'm still can't believe that I managed to waste almost 3 years running in circles (it feels like)....Thank goodness I made tenure at least!

That's the problem with federal government sometimes....they lack in supplying you with information that you need and that can be useful & beneficial. 

I appreciate your help folks!  Had I not taken your advice, I would have continued to sulk in frustration and desperation, not bothering to inquire further because of already feeling defeated and worn down from being in a state of helplessness.  Thanks! ...Now I have rejuvenated hope!  ...Hopefully not false hope.....

happy1  
#15 Posted : Friday, December 03, 2010 4:35:12 AM(UTC)
happy1

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Sounds to me like you're just not having any luck because of going up against vet preference. No matter what is said, or how much people that are usually vets try to deny it, vet preference has become the make or break in most cases now because there are so many with vet points applying now.
 
BCG84,
 
Please leave the anti-vet venom out of "all" of you postings as it is getting old. 
 
If you would re-read the posting you quoted, you will see that there is no mention of them not being selected for a position and they were instead determined to be not qualified.  This has nothing to do with veterans preference and is not part of this string.
 
Get a life and have a happy day.
charlesriver  
#16 Posted : Friday, December 03, 2010 5:38:48 AM(UTC)
charlesriver

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BGC84 wrote:
exotiq wrote:
I'm so frustrated.  This economy is lousy!  I have been unemployed for almost a year now because of it!  I still keep asking myself, "Why did I think that it would be a good idea to leave my secure, permanent status federal position in 2006, to take a 2-year term, with the expectation of going back to permanent status?!"I was a Legal Assistant (OA) with DOJ's U.S. Attorney's Office for over 5 years.  I was getting burnt out in my position and wanted a change, and when my boyfriend at the time, suggested that we move, I started putting in for federal transfers and other positions in the new location.  I end up taking a Secretary (OA) position with NASA (Kennedy Space Center), thinking that it would boost my resume....That was a mistake!  They even tried to reassure me (Of course, they couldn't put it in writing) that I would be able to go back to permanent status once I completed my 2-year term appointment.  Well, this was in 2006....Some time in early 2008 (7 months prior to the end of my 2-year appointment), we're told that our Administrative/clerical positions (GS-07 and below) would be basically discontinued and would be replaced with contract positions.  Great!  Just what I wanted to risk my federal career for!  I was determined to find another federal position, but time ran out and I couldn't do it.  So, I ended up unemployed for a month.  Swallowing my pride, I ended up taking one of those contract positions, that paid me $5 less per hour, without benefits (or any that I could afford on that salary).  I worked that job for about 13 months until I was laid off again 2 days prior to Christmas 2009.I realize now that I made the mistake to take a position with an agency too unstable with regard to maintaining it's workforce -- NASA.....Let that be a lesson to any of you --- Unless you're an engineer, don't bother with them!I have been desperate to get back into the federal civilian service, but to know avail.--vested and all!  I haven't had a job interview in over 2 years!  I finally found a job advertised for a LEGAL ASST (OA) with DOJ's ICE (Orlando) ...I'm thinking, "I should be a shoe-in since I've already done this job," except it was for the U.S. Attorney's Office.  Today...I get a reply that says that "I didn't meet the minimum qualifications for the job"....What??!!!!  ...Are you kidding me????   How is it that I didn't meet the minimum qualifications for a job I already performed for over 5 years???!!!I'm so frustrated!!!  ...And concerned that I won't be able to find anything by the time my unemployment runs out!  I've even had to resort to trying to find a lame minimum wage job and so far nothing!   I used to work for the state of Florida too....Over 10.5 years...I can't find anything there either!...I'm so frustrated I could scream!  How does this happen?  I even have an AA in Information Technology/Visual Communication.I can't see how a former federal employee with over 7.5 years of federal civilian service can't get a job?!  Could it be my age?  I just turned 45...but I don't even look 35 -- So I suppose I look 'old on paper'????  ...I can't figure it out!Does someone know something that I don't???


Sounds to me like you're just not having any luck because of going up against vet preference. No matter what is said, or how much people that are usually vets try to deny it, vet preference has become the make or break in most cases now because there are so many with vet points applying now.



I find it amazing how a few really spiteful people on this site try to make unsuccessful job attempts into a veterans preference issue. I'm not a vet. I've been working for the gov for going on six years. I've  had dozens of referrals, many interviews, and quite a few job offers. I definitely understand the frustration of the person who posted this thread. It took me a while to get the hang of the application process as well as to understand the nuances of KSA's, keywords, etc. But the jackasses who continually try to project their bitterness over vet preference really need to get a life.
jrf274  
#17 Posted : Friday, December 03, 2010 8:31:55 AM(UTC)
jrf274

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so I'm glad I came across this thread. Finally I got into the Federal Government in a full-time career conditional appointment (I'm a non-vet) but I was hired along with 50 others at the same time.

Yesterday I got a call about a job I applied for a few months ago (Program Specialist). I'm currently a GS-7, but this position is a GS-9 with promotion potential to a GS-11. The only catch is, after going back and looking at the application, it's a "Term appointment not to exceed 4 years".

On Monday I'm going to clarify if this is a term appointment or if it is a career conditional/career position (because I originally wasn't referred for this particular position, but I applied for 2 other positions of the same title "Program Specialist" at the same location as GS-9's that *are* permanent positions).

Long story, short - it sounds like it wouldn't be wise for me to leave my full-time (permanent) career conditional position, for a term appointment (even if it pays more)....especially since I'm a non-vet and it would be exteremely difficult for me to get back into the federal gov't on a full-time permanent appointment.

I hope that made sense.
Ish Kabibble  
#18 Posted : Friday, December 03, 2010 8:49:07 AM(UTC)
Ish Kabibble

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jrf274 wrote:
so I'm glad I came across this thread. Finally I got into the Federal Government in a full-time career conditional appointment (I'm a non-vet) but I was hired along with 50 others at the same time.

Yesterday I got a call about a job I applied for a few months ago (Program Specialist). I'm currently a GS-7, but this position is a GS-9 with promotion potential to a GS-11. The only catch is, after going back and looking at the application, it's a "Term appointment not to exceed 4 years".

On Monday I'm going to clarify if this is a term appointment or if it is a career conditional/career position (because I originally wasn't referred for this particular position, but I applied for 2 other positions of the same title "Program Specialist" at the same location as GS-9's that *are* permanent positions).

Long story, short - it sounds like it wouldn't be wise for me to leave my full-time (permanent) career conditional position, for a term appointment (even if it pays more)....especially since I'm a non-vet and it would be exteremely difficult for me to get back into the federal gov't on a full-time permanent appointment.

I hope that made sense.

Make sure you clarify the position type - sometimes you'll see that it's term NTE 4 years, but "may be non-competitively converted to a permanent position".  If that's the case, they can make you permanent during your term position, which may make it worthwhile.  Ultimately, you have to make the choice.
jrf274  
#19 Posted : Friday, December 03, 2010 8:58:37 AM(UTC)
jrf274

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Ish Kabibble wrote:

jrf274 wrote:
so I'm glad I came across this thread. Finally I got into the Federal Government in a full-time career conditional appointment (I'm a non-vet) but I was hired along with 50 others at the same time.

Yesterday I got a call about a job I applied for a few months ago (Program Specialist). I'm currently a GS-7, but this position is a GS-9 with promotion potential to a GS-11. The only catch is, after going back and looking at the application, it's a "Term appointment not to exceed 4 years".

On Monday I'm going to clarify if this is a term appointment or if it is a career conditional/career position (because I originally wasn't referred for this particular position, but I applied for 2 other positions of the same title "Program Specialist" at the same location as GS-9's that *are* permanent positions).

Long story, short - it sounds like it wouldn't be wise for me to leave my full-time (permanent) career conditional position, for a term appointment (even if it pays more)....especially since I'm a non-vet and it would be exteremely difficult for me to get back into the federal gov't on a full-time permanent appointment.

I hope that made sense.

<div style=": rgb255, 255, 255; margin-left: 1px; margin-top: 1px; margin-right: 1px; margin-bottom: 1px; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: rgb0, 0, 0; font-weight: normal; font-size: 12px; line-height: 1.4; border-top-width: 0px; border-right-width: 0px; border-bottom-width: 0px; border-left-width: 0px; border-style: initial; border-color: initial; -: none; ">Make sure you clarify the position type - sometimes you'll see that it's term NTE 4 years, but "may be non-competitively converted to a permanent position".  If that's the case, they can make you permanent during your term position, which may make it worthwhile.  Ultimately, you have to make the choice.



<<NOTE : This is a TERM appointment (not-to-exceed 4 years). A term appointment is a non-permanent appointment expected to last longer than one year, and can be extended non-competitively for a maximum of four years. Typically, the employing agency hires the term appointee for work of a specific project.   Term appointments are non-status, and non permanent appointments. Term employees are eligible to earn leave and generally have the same benefits as permanent employees including health and life insurance, within-grade increases and Federal Employees Retirement System and Thrift Savings Plan coverage. >>

Thanks for your response, but eh, that doesn't say anything about converting it. I've applied for over 3 years to get into my current, permanent career conditional position....I know how hard it is. Even though I don't really like my job, I would rather stay in it and keep looking for other career conditional positions as opposed to potentially leaving my 'status' position. It would be totally different if I had 3 years of continuous service; then I'd consider the term position, I'm only about 5 months in at this point.
Ryos  
#20 Posted : Saturday, December 04, 2010 2:33:45 AM(UTC)
Ryos

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I wouldn't advise going to a term position at this time.  In the best of times that may not convert to a status position.  These would be the most likely positions to go first when position cutting begins.  It's better to be stuck in a status position you hate than go to a term position you would love with a greater likelihood of separation.

Edit: with regards to the original topic, yeah, this sort of thing really makes it challenging to try and get a position that is most suitable to your skill set.  I'm in the same boat...
Ryos2010-12-04 10:40:12
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