Career&Employment, Employment & Career

Why are Military Spouses Not Getting the Federal Jobs?


In the 2016 Military Family Lifestyle Survey, 79% of military spouses applying for federal jobs were not hired. This is a startling statistic. As someone who has worked with many spouses, I would have loved to ask those spouses a number of questions.

Did you register for the PPP-S Program? The Priority Placement Program for Military Spouses, better known as PPP-S, provides military spouses with a high priority for Department of Defense (DoD) positions. You must register with your local Civilian Personnel Office or Civilian Personnel Advisory Center. You also need a FEDERAL resume.  

Did you create a FEDERAL resume?  The federal resume is very different than a two page corporate resume. The federal resume provides the hiring manager with details of how you are best qualified for a position.

Did you CUSTOMIZE your resume?  With a federal application you still need to customize the resume. In particular you need to fully address how you are an expert based on the questionnaire.

How did you answer the QUESTIONNAIRE?  The federal application includes a questionnaire. The number one reason people are not referred to the hiring official is how they answer the questionnaire. The number two reason is not documenting their expertise (see above).

Do you understand the SPOUSE NON-COMPETITIVE APPOINTMENT? This is separate from the PPP-S program and allows you to apply for positions open to “current federal employees,” which opens up many jobs to you.

Did you upload the DOCUMENTS?  Another common mistake is not uploading the proper documents. Did you upload a copy of your marriage certificate and spouse’s orders? To receive the spouse preference, these must be included. Do you have post high school education? You need to upload your transcripts, or your education will not count (and stop worrying about GPA, the hiring manager will likely not see your transcripts).

Want to know more? Check out our Federal Tool Kit.




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