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#1 Posted : Thursday, September 17, 2020 1:35:21 PM(UTC)

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A merit promotion position is advertised. Current and Former employees, as well as VEOA, are eligible. It's a ladder GS9-GS12. For GS09, specialized experience involving specific duties (not necessary to list them here) is required, or a Master's Degree in the proper field (which I have).

HR says I'm not eligible because I do not have one year specialized experience, which is true. However, I have a Master's Degree. Here comes the dumb question, when did substituting education for experience at the GS09 level stop? I have been eligible for a GS09 because of my Master's Degree. I may not have gotten referred but I have always been eligible when I was otherwise eligible for the announcement.

I suspect I am dealing with a newbie HR person. I just need confirmation I am not missing something. It's been a long time since I've had to formally contest a rating.

In the event I am given the proper determination, what is my next course of action?

#2 Posted : Tuesday, November 24, 2020 4:33:29 PM(UTC)

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I think you, like myself, are caught up in the time-in-grade (TIG) dilemma. I'm an unprotected veteran with over 20 years as a graphic designer (visual information specialist) with a Master's Degree. I have been a GS-9 for over 3 years. I have the skills and experience to be a GS-12. I have seen individuals without college degrees as GS-11s and their skills are horrible. But they've been there a long time.

Once you are in the system you have to play the TIG game. It is used to hold you back and keep pay requirements low. Your best chance is to apply for a job that is open to "All US citizens" This is supposed to bypass TIG requirements. My experience has been that I am automatically disqualified via this venue because I also applied as a TIG applicant. Totally legal to do both.Yet I have seen people in different fields go from a 9 to a 12. Although the system is designed to be transparent, HR has too many tricks to keep people in place and hire who they really want. It depends a lot on supply and demand in a particular field. You also have to remember that a lot of these job postings have to be advertised "for transparency" because they already have a person within their ranks that is really getting a promotion.

Edited by user Tuesday, November 24, 2020 4:38:58 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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