Fed government jobs questions

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by klmno, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Does anyone here know anything about being a civilian working for the federal government? Where can I find the GS pay scales and stuff? What kind of contract is involved? Will they pay for moving or give sign on bonuses? What are the benefits provided (time off and insurance)?
  2. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Pay scales vary by location; depending on cost of living etc. Your entering GS level is determined by the prescribed GS level for the job. When I worked for the IRS, I was a full-time seasonal employee, but since I was expected to work more than 6 months a year, I was eligible for health insurance. No contract, I just had to come back when they called me to come back at the beginning of the new season. I imagine any perks like being paid to move or a sign on bonus would be dependent on the job. Schedules and time off, again, depending on the job. I was a CSR, worked from 7:30 am - 4 pm Monday through Friday, but others started at 5:30 am, and swing shift ended at 1:30 am. I worked about 8 months/year, but other positions, like Data Transcriber, only last about 3 months.

    They used to post a lot of open positions online, I think it was America's Jobs, or something like that. If you have a service center nearby, you have a better chance of being hired there than a TAC office, just because of the number of people they hire.

    Good luck. Job hunting is not fun.
  3. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    It's USAJobs.com that you want to take a look at.

    If, as a civilian employee, you have paper orders changing your location, and they state that you have a relocation allowance (usual), you would contact your closest Personal Property Shipping Office and they will arrange to have commercial movers pack, pick up, move, deliver, and unpack your stuff. ALL of it. At Government expense.

    PM me if you should need info on your closest installation PPSO.

    Bennies for civilian employees are great. You have to go to a lot of meetings, of course, but the retirement is good, you get to use the BX/PX and commissary (CHEAPER THAN KROGER LEMME TELL YA), lots of vacation and sick leave. And the more years you are on the job, the better of course. It doesn't top out the way normal jobs do.

    Some things to keep in mind: Background check for clearance. There are several levels of clearance, from Network Access Clearance to TOP SECRET. They will ask a LOT of questions. When I got my first clearance I had to find out where my ex husband lived. THAT was interesting. Financial problems do not necessarily result in denial of clearance, depending on what you're doing. I had a bankruptcy on mine. But I don't work with money.

    Expect federal agents to ask your friends and family questions about you! That was fun, letting my friends know that "MIB" would be calling. Still wonder what exactly they were asked.

    Does this help any? Oh, I'm only a CONTRACTOR, not a civilian...
  4. bby31288

    bby31288 Active Member

    I work for the federal government. Use USAjob is the place to check. You can find payscales at www.opm.gov, they list the scales, locality pay etc. I do not think they will pay for your relocation unles you are hired someplace and then moved somewhere else. I currently work for a installation undergoing a BRAC (Base Realignment and Closure) if I wanted I could take an early move to APG Maryland and they would pay for the move, etc.
  5. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Thanks! I had a security clearance before so I think they don't need to do as much to re-activate it but it shouldn't be a problem anyway. I used USAJOBS to apply for this job but I didn't poke around on it to find out about bennies- I'll do that. I know the GS level for the job and did find another website that talked about COLA, which we also had in the military so I understand that. I'm really woondering about the medication insurance though. In the military, I had no medication costs unless I wanted to seek treatment off-base and on my own, without involving the military. So as a civilian, do I pay for my own insurance or do they cover part of that cost and I just pay for difficult child's? Is it a fed insurance program or a choice of private ones?

    This other website I found said they could negotiate relocation expenses upon hiring but make sure it is settled before taking the job. Also, I guess each GS level also has a "step" involved and if you are an experienced professional, you can negotiate the step you are started at in order to take the job with a salary that is comparable to what you are used to. Does all that sound true?
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2009
  6. bby31288

    bby31288 Active Member

    Check out FEHB on line. I'm not sure of the exact address. You can google it. If you were in the Military you could claim a veteran's preference. Where I am, certain jobs are no longer GS scales. They fall under DK, or DB which is paybanding. Pay for performance. Still the benefits for the government are good. You can negotiate for steps. Also as far as the clearance when I went back I had to fill out all of the forms again! But I believe that they investigate back to when you left, the don't re-investigate from prior when you received your first clearance.
  7. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Thanks!! That was a big help! Well, if I have to do all the paperwork over for the clearance, I hope my son's record doesn't knock me out. I don't think it would since he's a juvenile and my record is good and I feel sure there are others with clearances whose kids have gotten in trouble with the law.
  8. bby31288

    bby31288 Active Member

    I don't believe it will. My brother is a difficult child and spent many years in jail, etc. Thankfully it didn't affect mine. Now my credit on the other hand.....eventually I will need to "update" and that could be a problem. Most jobs with clearances are under the condition that you can "get and maintain a clearance", so maintaining my clearance may be an issue in the future...sigh I will cross that bridge when i come to it.
  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    K...Jamie had to get a top security clearance when he to Quantico. Basically because he worked on base with the Presidents helicopter. Also he was a MP who could be called to work that gate. Wouldnt be wise to have someone without that level of security clearance...lol.

    They checked him out thoroughly but Corys problems didnt hold him back. I assume if we had been crackpots it may have been a problem but we arent. We have minor problems like I have written one bad check in my life and I had my problems as a teen, and Tony got busted once as a teen for shoplifting but that didnt effect Jamie's security clearance.