Federal Resume Writing Do's

Most of us have at least taken a stab at writing a regular resume, but writing a federal resume is a bit different. You can't simply follow the "rules" of writing a standard resume and expect that it will get you that federal job. In other words, you have to meet certain rules and criteria in your resume in order to be considered. These days, writing the resume on the Federal Resume form is the accepted protocol; this form is also known as the OF-612 form.
 
Some "dos" when it comes to writing your federal resume
 
·    Include personal information as requested
 
Make sure you include full contact information, such as your full name, mailing address and zip code, reinstatement eligibility or civilian grade if applicable, and job series and dates of previous positions as applicable.
 
·    Write educational and background qualifications in chronological order
 
Unlike the average resume, you're going to provide your background information and qualifications in chronological rather than reverse chronological order. So, for education, you'll want to start with your high school education, and move on up from there. List each institution separately, including name and location, and what type of degree if any received, and the years you attended. You can include grades and awards received, too.
 
·    List major subjects pursued, and include the total credits earned
 
It might be tempting to use bullet points for these sections, but be careful; while bullet points are perfect for civilian resumes, they're less applicable in federal job applications.
 
·    Be as detailed as possible
 
Again, while civilian resumes focus on being brief, succinct and to the point, federal employers are going to want to know exactly what you've done, specifically as it relates to education and experience. Therefore, go for detail rather than brevity.
 
·    List equivalent experience
 
There may be times when your education doesn't exactly match the qualifications needed for the job, but if you've had experience that will qualify you nonetheless, make sure you list it. It may just get you the job even if your educational qualifications fall short. Be as detailed as possible, again.

 

Gail Esparan