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Vol  
#1 Posted : Thursday, May 14, 2020 7:54:41 AM(UTC)
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A few weeks back the famous "Don't sell yourself short during an application" came to bite me back.

HR sent me an email about a promotion I had applied to that said the following:

"We have reviewed your resume and application materials and determined that you are eligible for this position. However, your responses to the applicant assessment questions did not place you in the highest quality category and therefore we are unable to refer your application to the selecting official."

And so my application died. It gives me hope that I got a strong resume / application material for a GS-13/14 job, hopefully one day I'll be able to get an interview. Don't lie on your application, but also DON'T SELL YOURSELF SHORT.

There's a very good article here on federalsoup about how application assessments can be the deathknell of applications. Read it! A lot of things you don't think may count as "experience" count as experience. Get yourself to the interview and let them decide, don't apply to auto disqualify yourself.

I'm saving this application forever in order to remind myself of my mistake and growing from it. Wanted to put this out there for anyone that might need it.
I'm just waiting here waiting for the third impact.
DaVinci95  
#2 Posted : Thursday, May 14, 2020 11:57:22 AM(UTC)
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The problem isn’t so much you selling yourself short as it is all the other applicants lying and claiming to be an expert in everything. The application questionnaire is worthless, yet HR continues to insist on using it. So your options are either to lie too and hope they don’t call you on it or answer truthfully and accept that you will miss out on opportunities.

Matrix  
#3 Posted : Saturday, May 23, 2020 7:08:39 PM(UTC)
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This is very true. We had a person on our team, that literally did the job position for a year during the hiring process of that position, but he didn't put "expert" on everything. In his mind, he was answering nation-wide.

Guess who didn't get referred? They cancelled the announcement, told him to put expert, and posted until he made the certificate. His "interview" was in a polo shirt, and he made it with no education, no VA disability, etc.

In a way, kind of shows you that mission areas will hire who they want...but also we had got referrals from people in the same building that we KNEW had minimal experience in that. They simply revised their resume to work it that way, and "expert" means something different to everyone so you can't even claim fraud.
Endless Summer  
#4 Posted : Saturday, May 23, 2020 8:52:43 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Matrix Go to Quoted Post
This is very true. We had a person on our team, that literally did the job position for a year during the hiring process of that position, but he didn't put "expert" on everything. In his mind, he was answering nation-wide.

Guess who didn't get referred? They cancelled the announcement, told him to put expert, and posted until he made the certificate. His "interview" was in a polo shirt, and he made it with no education, no VA disability, etc.

In a way, kind of shows you that mission areas will hire who they want...but also we had got referrals from people in the same building that we KNEW had minimal experience in that. They simply revised their resume to work it that way, and "expert" means something different to everyone so you can't even claim fraud.


I have to disagree with the "Lie because everyone else does" philosophy. I would even suggest that Matrix's post is proof of my position. I have always graded myself accurately. Hell, I've gotten job offers where I chose "I have had training but no experience" on questions.

I've also gotten my a$$ handed to me during an interview where I incorrectly graded myself at the max. It was a misunderstanding, but I never heard back from them.

Read the question carefully, answer in a way that you can defend during the interview and that's supported by your resume. After all, how many of us have gotten into a job and found it had nothing to do with the PD, interview, or questionnaire.
GWPDA  
#5 Posted : Sunday, May 24, 2020 5:52:37 AM(UTC)
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The position I have always taken, counselled others to take and argued in favor of forever is simply this: Never disqualify yourself. Do not diminish what you are, what you know, or your experience in order to satisfy someone else's ambitions.

To do this, you must assess yourself accurately, not comparatively. You must know what the standard is and know whether you meet it or whether you can meet it. Do not disqualify yourself. You may not 'win' every struggle, you may be marked down 'unfairly' or inaccurately, but you will still be correct. Do not betray yourself. There are far, far too many people eager to damage you too help them do it.
thanks 1 user thanked GWPDA for this useful post.
SD Analyst on 5/25/2020(UTC)
smithandjones  
#6 Posted : Sunday, May 24, 2020 6:02:42 AM(UTC)

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The federal HR is a swamp from which fairness cannot arise.
someoldguy  
#7 Posted : Sunday, May 24, 2020 6:13:34 AM(UTC)
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I'll admit I've claimed "expert" knowledge which might have been, shall we say, a bit of a stretch... but I always made sure that I had some item on my resume/work history that I could at least point to as a plausible source of my expertise.

So while I may have inflated, I never out-and-out fabricated. And most of the fed interviews I've been in asked questions which were not directly related to any claims of expertise or even the job in question, e.g. "Tell me about a time you had to work with a difficult person. What did you do? How was the situation resolved?"

Edited by user Sunday, May 24, 2020 6:14:21 AM(UTC)  | Reason: e.g.? i.e.? I can't tell the difference anymore.

DISCLAIMER: You read it on an open internet forum :)
AnotherGuy  
#8 Posted : Sunday, May 24, 2020 6:47:54 AM(UTC)
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We hired a scientist near the end of February this year, and we are letting the scientist go this month. She claimed she had specific skill sets during the interview but was unable to perform nor keep up with the pacing. Bye Felicia. We've been dismissing scientists lately; too many resume-perfect applicants turned out to be a bunch of frauds.
gailbuf  
#9 Posted : Sunday, May 24, 2020 4:25:49 PM(UTC)
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I'm a computer programmer at GS-12 step 3, started in Sept 2017. I have strong technical skills and responded "8" for my strongest ones on my application. I applied for 2 positions, including one where I was working as a contractor. I ended up being referred on both, was asked to interview for both. I ended up accepting the position where I was working as a contractor. I was completely honest about my skills, an didn't think they were worth a 9 or 10 self-rating
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