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ChrisV  
#1 Posted : Tuesday, August 4, 2020 3:36:16 PM(UTC)
ChrisV

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Hello all,
I'm new here and been wanted to ask for some advice on how to moving up from a WG to a GS position.
I'm a Sheet Metal Mechanic WG-10 for 5 years and I'm still trying to moving up the ladder but gotten no where. I've been applying on usajobs for 2 or 3 years now but none of my applications got reffered (Well actually I got one reffered for a WG-12 position but the job closed in April and I still haven't heard anything from them).
I have an associate degree in Diversify Studies, an A&P Mechanic certificate, no military background. I try to shoot for a job like Electronic Technician but without a degree from that field, it might be harder?
Please any advice would be helpful.
nembamike  
#2 Posted : Wednesday, August 5, 2020 5:07:34 AM(UTC)

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In most cases you either meet the job requirements based on education or experience or a combination of the two. Since you don't have a degree ypu most likely need to apply for those jobs on experience alone. Make sure when you do apply that your work experience matches what's in the announcement. Good luck.
BOPDentist  
#3 Posted : Wednesday, August 5, 2020 6:03:56 AM(UTC)
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ChrisV,

if you are still below the age 37, have you considered looking at Bureau of Prison jobs (DOJ); they usually have many "facilities"-type jobs that you would qualify for based on your experience....and they have good promotion potentials.

Most of the Wardens and BOP executive SES staff are all COs (correctional officers) who started from the bottom, and went up real fast! My current warden started out at GS5 and is now in the SES echelon.

Work environment is not bad at all; and I had my reservations of coming in to the BOP in 2016 when I was exploring the idea. And all my misconceptions were proved false. But age must be below 37 for most BOP occupations.

Edited by user Wednesday, August 5, 2020 6:06:04 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

icanzz  
#4 Posted : Wednesday, August 5, 2020 6:29:53 AM(UTC)
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I worked for years as a Safety officer GS12. I would visit dams/hydro electric. The person in charge is always a GS15 Superintendent, but he was not even close to being the highest paid person there, he had a few other GS people, secretary, park rangers working for him/her..none of them came close to the pay of the WG pay people. The WGs from the 30 year old to the 60 year old all made more in than the Super. I don't think I met 1 WG with a college degree...but all where certified in prime power production.
frankgonzalez  
#5 Posted : Wednesday, August 5, 2020 7:02:16 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: ChrisV Go to Quoted Post
Hello all,
I'm new here and been wanted to ask for some advice on how to moving up from a WG to a GS position.
I'm a Sheet Metal Mechanic WG-10 for 5 years and I'm still trying to moving up the ladder but gotten no where. I've been applying on usajobs for 2 or 3 years now but none of my applications got reffered (Well actually I got one reffered for a WG-12 position but the job closed in April and I still haven't heard anything from them).
I have an associate degree in Diversify Studies, an A&P Mechanic certificate, no military background. I try to shoot for a job like Electronic Technician but without a degree from that field, it might be harder?
Please any advice would be helpful.
To get referred, your resume has to show you have done the work in some form or fashion.

If you have your A&P, then QA would be a good next step, or at least a move over to the Engine shop from Sheet metal (ie do more Powerplant having done Airframe). Or, you could go back to school to pick up an Avionics certification...or get an BSc in EE if you really want to move over to GS. As pointed out though, as a WG your overtime and hourly rate can exceed many in the GS world.

Of course, working in the office is less demanding on your body (I'm an old Avionics Specialist from my time in the AF who switched to my current field while active duty and my civil service career has had way less impact on my body than my decade+ working on acft).

It will depend on what you actually want to do long term. "Move to GS" is NOT going to help anyone give you advice. That is too broad a concept. It is like saying I want to live somewhere else...without more details, the answers will be all over the place.

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
thanks 1 user thanked frankgonzalez for this useful post.
ChrisV on 8/5/2020(UTC)
djp  
#6 Posted : Wednesday, August 5, 2020 7:41:25 AM(UTC)

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If you are looking at maintenance and repair work

GSA
VHA
DOD
Prisons

They have these kind of jobs.

An added problem is union rules can be a problem. Where only union members can compete for mid level jobs vs entry levels open to anyone.
ChrisV  
#7 Posted : Wednesday, August 5, 2020 7:00:34 PM(UTC)
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Thank you all so much for the replies. I've always wanted to moving my career forward in the Air Force,especially working with aircrafts. I will continue my work search and improve my skills.
And yes, QA is also a position that I am thinking to shoot for as well.
Again, greatly appreciate everyone's input!
frankgonzalez  
#8 Posted : Thursday, August 6, 2020 3:19:23 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: ChrisV Go to Quoted Post
Thank you all so much for the replies. I've always wanted to moving my career forward in the Air Force,especially working with aircrafts. I will continue my work search and improve my skills.
And yes, QA is also a position that I am thinking to shoot for as well.
Again, greatly appreciate everyone's input!
Are you in the Reserve or ANG? If not, have you considered it? If so, consider trying for a job that will translate to what you would like to do as a civil servant. ie. If you want to become a pointy-head avionics geek..consider Guidance and Control (my old job- either flightline or back shop) or Comm-Nav as they will give you the greatest variety of aircraft you can work on (rather than say ECM or Bomb-Nav systems). Then as you get experience in that AFSC, you can translate that to the series you want to get into.

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
GSBS  
#9 Posted : Friday, August 7, 2020 3:43:22 PM(UTC)
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I applied for a Wage Grade position and was given a G.S. Position. What I found out as I was new to Government, the top Step would take 20+ Years instead of 5 listed on the WG announcement.
foureyedbuzzard  
#10 Posted : Saturday, September 5, 2020 8:09:49 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: icanzz Go to Quoted Post
I worked for years as a Safety officer GS12. I would visit dams/hydro electric. The person in charge is always a GS15 Superintendent, but he was not even close to being the highest paid person there, he had a few other GS people, secretary, park rangers working for him/her..none of them came close to the pay of the WG pay people. The WGs from the 30 year old to the 60 year old all made more in than the Super. I don't think I met 1 WG with a college degree...but all where certified in prime power production.


Just a clarification regarding your post in the event others reading this are interested:

Hydro employees at major federal hydro agencies are "negotiated rate" positions, also sometimes called (not entirely correctly) "prevailing wage". They don't follow the default WG/WL/WS payscales. Agency employees at Western Area Power Administration, Bureau of Reclamation, Bonneville Power Administration, and others have payscales much higher than what you'll see in published WG series jobs like at a shipyard or the VA or other appropriated fund agency, as they have to compete with commercial public utility companies for talent, comply with Davis-Bacon Act, etc. Typically these payscale series carry labels such as WB, BB, WE, etc. There are other agencies outside hydro/power that are also "negotiated rate"- not many - but they do exist. Based upon STRAIGHT TIME pay, these employees would almost never make higher wages than say a GS-15 superintendent. However, once shift-differentials and overtime are factored in, yes, many would. Typically electricians/mechanics at hydros make in the 48 to 55/hr rate (straight time), with their hourly supervisors (in the same job series) in the 70/hr range. Their OT pay is also negotiated and not capped as it is with GS jobs. So yeah, you can make A LOT of money (more than a GS-15) in these jobs. Of note, virtually all of the agencies with these special pay scales are "non-appropriated funds" - they are not funded by taxes, but rather by the revenue they generate by selling electric power or other tangible products even though they are government agencies. This is very specialized hands-on "blue collar" work - high voltage power systems, massive mechanical systems (flood gates, turbines, etc.) Some have degrees, most don't, but these are positions where know-how can only be gained through specialized hands-on experience.

Edited by user Saturday, September 5, 2020 8:30:43 AM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

Nittany Lioness  
#11 Posted : Wednesday, October 14, 2020 10:20:13 AM(UTC)
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I assume you are at Tinker since your profile says Oklahoma. Since there are lots of GS jobs in AFSC (which I assume you are part of) get a mentor over on the "white collar" side of the base and express your interest in moving over there. Every single equipment specialist (1670 job series) I ever worked with in my AF career started as a WG on the MX side of the house. I think very few had degrees. They usually started out as GS-9s and the journey level was GS-11 although there were some 12 leads. Good luck.
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