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Federal Career Planning and Development

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leprendun  
#1 Posted : Sunday, November 25, 2018 9:02:23 AM(UTC)
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I'm approaching the three-year mark in the competitive service in February. Will the change in status from career-conditional to tenured status be processed by HR automatically, or do I have to request it specifically? Is there generally a long delay in getting the SF-50? I'm itching to get out of government and see if the grass is greener in private industry, but I don't want to leave before I'm sure that I have career tenure.

I'm assuming my career tenure date is three years after my EOD. Are there any common pitfalls or HR minutiae that would change the effective date? Just trying to cover all my bases to time my job search.
FrankJr  
#2 Posted : Sunday, November 25, 2018 3:33:59 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: leprendun Go to Quoted Post
I'm approaching the three-year mark in the competitive service in February. Will the change in status from career-conditional to tenured status be processed by HR automatically, or do I have to request it specifically? Is there generally a long delay in getting the SF-50? I'm itching to get out of government and see if the grass is greener in private industry, but I don't want to leave before I'm sure that I have career tenure.

I'm assuming my career tenure date is three years after my EOD. Are there any common pitfalls or HR minutiae that would change the effective date? Just trying to cover all my bases to time my job search.


In theory the employee need not act at the three year mark; but in the not so perfect world waiting for the actual SF-50 is a good idea as address issues is much easier while working for the federal government vs not working for the federal government. As a side note, the initial impression would be the "career" status at three years is of greater value as a current federal employee vs. a future federal employee. No incentives for the agencies to hire employees simply due to "career" status.

Ideally leverage the federal employment. Both the public sector and the private sector have advantages and disadvantages. The private sector is non too fond of prior public sector employees, and vice versa.
cyberfx1024  
#3 Posted : Sunday, November 25, 2018 5:16:22 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: leprendun Go to Quoted Post
I'm approaching the three-year mark in the competitive service in February. Will the change in status from career-conditional to tenured status be processed by HR automatically, or do I have to request it specifically? Is there generally a long delay in getting the SF-50? I'm itching to get out of government and see if the grass is greener in private industry, but I don't want to leave before I'm sure that I have career tenure.

I'm assuming my career tenure date is three years after my EOD. Are there any common pitfalls or HR minutiae that would change the effective date? Just trying to cover all my bases to time my job search.


When I reached career tenure it was done automatically by HR. The SF-50 took a couple weeks for it to processed for me to get it.
spence  
#4 Posted : Monday, November 26, 2018 11:54:23 PM(UTC)

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My case is different. I had to open a ticket for HR at my agency to research. During the time I was career-conditional, I had had 3 different jobs in 2 different agencies, with some of the jobs being seasonal. The seasonal time affected calculations because a little of the time when I was in nonwork status could count towards the 3 years for career tenure, but mostly not. The offseason wasn't a break in service, because I was a career-conditional seasonal, not temporary, but the offseason still mostly didn't count toward the 3 years.

So when it was a few months after I believed I should qualify for my career tenure, I followed up with my agency and opened that ticket. If I hadn't opened the ticket, I don't know if they'd ever have switched me from career-conditional to career.

Because of my years as a seasonal only partially counting, I actually became career about 5 calendar years after I started, rather than the normal 3 years. I knew I should qualify around then though, as I'd been keeping track and knew the rules.

If you worked for 3 years in only one year-round job or at least in only one agency, it'll probably go more smoothly and automatically than it did with me.

I agree with the advice not to leave federal employment until you get an SF-50 documenting your career tenure, to avoid the risk of being deemed ineligible for status announcements and avoid having to prove anything about your status later.

Edited by user Tuesday, November 27, 2018 12:21:53 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

S D Analyst  
#5 Posted : Monday, December 10, 2018 2:23:20 PM(UTC)
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While it's great to make career tenure first, I would encourage you to make 5 years before leaving. The reason is that 5 years vests you in your particular retirement system. There are currently 3 flavors of FERS where you pay different amounts into the system for the same retirement benefit (FERS (0.8%); FERS-RAE (3.1%); FERS-FRAE (4.4%)). If you leave after 3 but before 5 years, when you come back you get stuck in whatever the current system is. That is the law. You must have 5 years in a retirement system in order to remain in it. The different contribution amounts for the 3 FERS flavors can make a significant difference in your net pay.
thanks 2 users thanked S D Analyst for this useful post.
LowKeyOG on 12/11/2018(UTC), leprendun on 12/12/2018(UTC)
leprendun  
#6 Posted : Wednesday, December 12, 2018 7:03:24 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: S D Analyst Go to Quoted Post
While it's great to make career tenure first, I would encourage you to make 5 years before leaving. The reason is that 5 years vests you in your particular retirement system. There are currently 3 flavors of FERS where you pay different amounts into the system for the same retirement benefit (FERS (0.8%); FERS-RAE (3.1%); FERS-FRAE (4.4%)). If you leave after 3 but before 5 years, when you come back you get stuck in whatever the current system is. That is the law. You must have 5 years in a retirement system in order to remain in it. The different contribution amounts for the 3 FERS flavors can make a significant difference in your net pay.


This wasn't even on my radar, thanks for the information! It certainly adds a significant wrinkle to any career planning.
TheRealOrange  
#7 Posted : Wednesday, December 12, 2018 7:14:36 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: leprendun Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: S D Analyst Go to Quoted Post
While it's great to make career tenure first, I would encourage you to make 5 years before leaving. The reason is that 5 years vests you in your particular retirement system. There are currently 3 flavors of FERS where you pay different amounts into the system for the same retirement benefit (FERS (0.8%); FERS-RAE (3.1%); FERS-FRAE (4.4%)). If you leave after 3 but before 5 years, when you come back you get stuck in whatever the current system is. That is the law. You must have 5 years in a retirement system in order to remain in it. The different contribution amounts for the 3 FERS flavors can make a significant difference in your net pay.


This wasn't even on my radar, thanks for the information! It certainly adds a significant wrinkle to any career planning.

Plus, if you have at least 5 years of creditable service, even if you never return to federal service, you can obtain a deferred retirement upon reaching age 62. The annuity would begin the first day of the month after you reach age 62. Five percent of your high-3 average salary may not be much, but it's certainly better than nothing.
thanks 1 user thanked TheRealOrange for this useful post.
S D Analyst on 12/12/2018(UTC)
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