Federal Employment Application/Hiring Process

Applying for positions with the federal government is a SLOW process. Begin the process early and BE PATIENT. It could take anywhere from 9-18 months to complete the process.

NOTE: The application/hiring process is complex and difficult to navigate for those that are unfamiliar with it.To begin, read the information below. You are encouraged to schedule an appointment with a Career Center staff member to assist you through this process and answer any questions or concerns you may have. To schedule an appointment to review information on federal hiring, contact the Career Center directly at 717-477-1484.

STEP 1: Research Information/Agencies Through The Internet

Research information on federal job opportunities through one (or more) of the following:

STEP 2: Review Information/Resources Thoroughly

  • Obtain the vacancy announcement.
  • Research and obtain specific information about the opportunities of interest to you.
  • The vacancy announcement is an important source of information. It will answer most questions you may have about the position.
  • Review Procedures for Federal Job Search [PDF] for more detailed information.

STEP 3: Prepare Resume And Application Materials

  • Follow the application instructions carefully and completely. Submit all required information and documents by deadline dates.Some jobs with unique requirements may also ask for additional/other forms to be completed and submitted.
  • It is essential to follow the instructions carefully and completely. Submit all required information and documents by deadline dates.
  • Carefully Review Federal Resumes: Content And Format [PDF] carefully.
  • View Sample Federal Resume [PDF] for an example on how to get started.
  • At any point in the process, contact the Career Center to schedule an appointment to review the process in more detail and ask questions.

Additional Information and Resources

Federal Career Guides

Guides to help students identify jobs and internships within the federal government that align with their choice of majors and/or interests.