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Job Title: Food Safety Ombudsman

Department:Department Of Agriculture

Agency:Departmental Administration

Sub Agency:Departmental Management

Job Announcement Number:ES-2012-0004

SALARY RANGE:

$96,690.00 to $125,695.00 / Per Year

OPEN PERIOD:

Wednesday, January 25, 2012 to Wednesday, February 01, 2012

SERIES & GRADE:

GS-1801-14

POSITION INFORMATION:

Full-Time - Temporary NTE 1 year

PROMOTION POTENTIAL:

14

DUTY LOCATIONS:

1 vacancy(s) - Location Negotiable After Selection, US

WHO MAY BE CONSIDERED:

Applications will be accepted from all United States citizens.

JOB SUMMARY:

The United States Department of Agriculture's overarching mission is to provide leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, and related issues based on sound public policy, the best available science, and efficient management. With USDA you'll have the flexibility and freedom to explore a world of possibilities through a wealth of exciting and challenging career opportunities. By joining USDA, you can hone your career skills while helping to secure the U.S. future and make a real difference in the lives of Americans and people around the world.

The Office of the Secretary is seeking a motivated and highly-qualified candidate for an exciting full-time, temporary position.

THIS IS A TEMPORARY POSITION NOT TO EXCEED ONE (1) YEAR.

THE DUTY LOCATION WILL BE DETERMINED UPON SELECTION. AS A RESULT, THE SALARY RANGES VARY ACCORDING TO THE GEOGRAPHIC AREA LOCALITY ADJUSTMENTS.  THEREFORE, RATES SHOWN ABOVE ARE ONLY A GUIDE AND WILL DEPEND UPON THE SELECTEE'S DUTY LOCATION.


The Office of the Secretary directs and coordinates the work of the  Department, provides policy direction for all areas of the Department's responsibilities including research, educational and regulatory activities, nutrition, conservation, and farm programs, forestry, and international agriculture and maintains relationships with organizations and others in the development of programs and maintaining liaison with the Executive Office of the President and members of Congress on all matters pertaining to Departmental policy.

CONCURRENT ANNOUNCEMENT: This vacancy is also being announced as vacancy announcement number ES-2012-0005. Please review that announcement if you are currently employed by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and wish to be considered under merit promotion procedures. Note: Applicants must apply separately for each announcement in order to be considered under both procedures.

KEY REQUIREMENTS

 

         U.S. Citizenship.

         Background Investigation.


DUTIES:

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The primary purpose for this position is to respond to employee concerns related to the humane handling and slaughter of animals and other duties pertaining to the food safety mission as assigned by the Under Secretary. The incumbent performs the following duties:

-Independently establishes a process to collect and resolve confidential complaints and concerns of employees about programs, policies and procedures that may threaten the effectiveness of the food safety mission and are not being addressed in a timely manner in other forums.

-Recommends cross-cutting improvements in programs, policies and procedures to decision-making officials to minimize the recurrence of problems.  

-Develops an annual report to the Under Secretary and the Mission Administrator summarizing problems, resolutions, and recommendations.    

-Reviews complaints, obtains and impartially reviews patterns of relevant facts, identifies options for resolution, and collaborates with concerned parties and decision-making official(s) for long-term resolution.  

-Refers complaints or concerns covered by existing regulations to the appropriate internal or external forum.   

-Represents the Under Secretary or other senior-level officials to the National Partnership for Reinvention (NPR).  

-Plans, designs, and carries out an employee ombudsman program aimed at identifying and facilitating resolution of substantive and administrative program management issues raised by or of concern to employees and citizens as potentially threatening food safety effectiveness.


QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED:

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At the GS-14 level:
Applicants must have one year of specialized experience equivalent to the next lower grade level in the Federal service.  Qualifying experience for GS-14 includes one year of specialized experience comparable to GS-13 which is directly related to the work of this position and which has equipped the applicant with the competencies to perform successfully the duties of the position. For this position, specialized experience is experience monitoring and analyzing substantive administrative and program issues pertaining to food safety effectiveness and the humane handling of animals to assure compliance with the humane slaughter law.

NOTE:  We recommend that your application clearly show your possession of the specialized experience qualification requirement.

 

There is no substitution of education for experience at this grade level.

All qualification requirements must be met by the closing date of this announcement.

Employment is contingent upon satisfactory completion of a background investigation and the granting of a federal suitability or security clearance.

HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED:

Applicants will be evaluated on their demonstration of the possession of the following competencies as described in the online assessment questions. You do not need to respond separately to these competencies. Your answers to the online questions will serve as responses to the competencies. Applicants answers will be validated against information provided in their resumes, including their paid or volunteer experience, education, training, and certifications.

1. Knowledge of food safety policies, structure, functions and practices of the United States' meat and poultry industries sufficient to respond to concerns related to the humane handling and slaughter of animals and to the effectiveness of the food safety mission.

2. Ability to identify trends in issues and problems and plan and implement an Ombudsman strategy that substantively influences administrative program management policies and procedures resulting in improved employee morale and enhanced mission effectiveness.

3. Knowledge of conflict resolution methodologies, techniques and approaches to negotiate collaborative solutions to novel, sensitive or highly controversial issues.

4. Ability to establish and maintain cooperative relationships with staff at all levels and with a wide variety of management officials and others in the private and public sector to effectively influence acceptance and implementation of recommendations and resolve highly controversial issues.

Applicants will be rated using the Category Rating system. If you meet the eligibility and qualification requirements for this position, you will be rated on your possession of the competencies listed above. Based on the extent and quality of your experience paid and unpaid), education, and training in relation to these competencies, you will be placed into one of the following three categories:

Best Qualified  
Applicants with a background that demonstrates a superior level of possession of all competencies.

Well Qualified  
Applicants with a background that demonstrates a satisfactory level of possession of the competencies.

Qualified  
Applicants possessing the specialized experience described above and any education or selective factor if also required.

Application of Veterans Preference for Delegated Examining: Category rating and selection procedures place those with veterans preference above non-preference eligibles within each category. Preference eligibles who meet the eligibility and qualification requirements and who have a compensable service-connected disability of at least 10 percent are listed in the highest quality category, except when the position being filled is scientific or professional at the GS-9 level or higher. This position is not a scientific or professional position.
To preview questions please click here.


BENEFITS:

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The Federal government offers a number of exceptional benefits to its employees. This link provides an overview of the benefits currently offered: http://www.usajobs.gov/ResourceCenter/Index/Interactive/Benefits

OTHER INFORMATION:

Recruitment/relocation incentives will not be authorized.

Additional vacancies may be filled from this announcement.

Background Investigation:  Employment is contingent upon satisfactory completion of a background investigation and the granting of a federal suitability or security clearance.

If you are a displaced Federal employee, you may be entitled to receive special priority consideration under the Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP) or the Career Transition Assistance Program (CTAP). Eligible ICTAP/CTAP employees within
the commuting area must (1) submit documentary evidence of eligibility (a separation notice; a 'Notice of Personnel Action' (SF-50) documenting separation; an agency certification that you cannot be placed after injury compensation has been terminated; an OPM notification that your disability annuity has been terminated; OR a Military Department or National Guard Bureau notification that you are retired under 5 U.S.C. 8337(h) or 8456), (2) submit all required documents specified in the announcement, and (3) be rated in the Well Qualified definition as described above in the "how you will be evaluated" section.

All Federal employees are required by PL 104-134 to have Federal salary payments made by direct deposit to a financial institution of their choosing.

Male applicants born after December 31, 1959, must certify that they have registered with the Selective Service System or are exempt from having to do so under Selective Service law, if selected.

The US Department of Agriculture participates in E-Verify and will provide the Social Security Administration (SSA) and, if necessary, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with information from each new employee's Form I-9 to confirm work authorization.


HOW TO APPLY:

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ONLINE APPLICATION:
Application to this announcement requires the online submission of basic applicant information and responses to competency questions and submission of supporting documentation (described in the required documents section below).  All application materials will be accepted until midnight Eastern Time on the closing date.  Help
in applying online is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the number listed in the Contact information section.

NOTE:  Our online application system is 100% compatible with the following web browsers: Netscape; IE versions 5.5 and above and Safari 1.0 and above on Mac.  If you are using any other web browser to complete your application you may experience errors, missing text or you may be unable to complete your application on-line.

STEP ONE (On-line Resume):
You must create a user account and at least one Federal resume at USAJOBS.  The information you provide in your Federal resume will become part
of your application and will automatically be transferred to our system when you apply on-line.

1.  Begin the application process by clicking on the [Apply Online] button at the bottom of the announcement.

2.  Log into your USAJOBS account (if you are not already logged in) or create one (if you do not have one established).  

3.  Select the resume you would like to submit and click on [Apply for this position now!]. You will now be automatically transferred to our system where you will complete the application process.

STEP TWO (Personal Information and Competencies):
1.  Once you have been transferred, follow the on-screen prompts to complete your application. Be certain to read the on-screen instructions thoroughly before continuing. First, you will be asked to complete or update your information on file.  

2.  After completing or updating your information, you will be asked to respond to questions specific to this vacancy.  You must respond to all questions in order to save or proceed with the application process.  

3.  Once you have answered all the vacancy questions click on [Finished].

STEP THREE (Faxing Supporting Documentation):
The next step of the application process is to fax all the required supporting documentation specified in the Required Documents section of this vacancy announcement. You do not need to have all of your supporting documentation submitted in order continue with the online portion of the application process.  Please carefully follow the instructions below to ensure your supporting documents are properly faxed and received.  All required documents must be received by midnight Eastern Time on the closing date of the vacancy announcement.  
 
FAX INSTRUCTIONS:
1.  After answering all vacancy related questions, you will be taken to a page containing a list of fax cover sheets for all required supporting documents.
 
2.  If you have previously faxed supporting documentation the status of those documents will indicate Received.  There is no need to resubmit documents which show a status of received unless you are submitting an updated copy.

3.  You must use a separate cover sheet for each type of supporting documentation. Choose the document cover sheet(s) you would like to print by selecting the appropriate check boxes in the Selected Documents column.

4.  Click the Print Cover Sheets button. A window will pop up containing the fax cover sheet(s) you selected. Print the coversheet(s). NOTE: You must be connected to a printer in order to print the coversheets.

5.  Once you have reviewed the list of documents and printed any required fax cover sheets click on [Done].  You will be moved forward in the application process.

6.  Before faxing your document(s), take care to ensure the document is legible and all information is complete and signed, if necessary.  Fax only documents which are clear and legible. Original documents with light or faded print and/or dark or patterned backgrounds will not be legible upon receipt.  Illegible faxed documents cannot be used for qualification or verification purposes.

7.  Place the corresponding cover sheet on top of the document and fax the cover sheet and document together to the fax number specified on the cover sheet.  

NOTE: If you are faxing more than one document, EACH DOCUMENT MUST BE FAXED SEPARATELY under its corresponding cover sheet to the fax number specified on the cover sheet. DO NOT FAX ALL DOCUMENTS UNDER ONE COVER SHEET.  

8.  Be sure to save these cover sheets in the event you need to re-fax your supporting documents.  Each fax transmission includes a unique identification number, which ensures your document is processed correctly.

9.  You will receive an e-mail confirming the fax has been successfully received by Human Resources. This EMAIL CONFIRMATION is our official receipt of submission. The fax confirmation generated by the fax machine is NOT your official receipt of submission.  

Your application will be considered incomplete and YOU WILL BE FOUND INELIGIBLE if you fail to submit the required documentation as specified under the required documents section by midnight Eastern Time on the closing date of the vacancy announcement.

STEP FOUR (Review and Submit Application):  
The final step of the application process is to review and submit your complete online application package.  

1.  Review the personal information, core questions, vacancy questions and resume for accuracy and completeness.

2.  Once you are satisfied with your application click on [Finished] to submit your application.  

If you do not click on [Finished] your application will not be submitted and you will not receive consideration.

3.  Once you have submitted your application you will be redirected back to USAJOBS where you may view your application status, continue to browse for open positions and/or apply for additional positions.  You may return at any time until midnight Eastern Time on the closing date of the announcement to update or make changes to your
application.


APPLICANTS WHO DO NOT APPLY ONLINE:
You are strongly encouraged to complete the on-line portion of the application process via USAJOBS.  If you cannot apply on-line, call the number listed under Agency Contact section between 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. prior to the closing date to request a hard copy of the complete application package.  If you do not request the complete application package, and your application does not include all the information requested within the web site How do I apply if I cannot apply on-line (See link below.), you will not be considered for this vacancy.  Be advised, if you request an application package late in the announcement period, you cannot receive an extension past the closing date.  Hard copy faxed applications must be received by midnight Eastern Time on the closing date of the announcement.  Hard copy applications that are not faxed will be accepted at the Human Resources Office listed in the Agency Contact section of this announcement until 4:30 p.m.  All hard copy applications must include all the information listed at How do I Apply if I cannot apply on-line.  Application packages submitted via e-mail will NOT be accepted.

***Do NOT use government postage paid envelopes.

***Applicants who cannot apply on-line, click the link below for instructions on how to apply. How to apply if I cannot apply online

At the above web site, click on Frequently Asked Questions, then Appling for Jobs and finally How to apply if I cannot apply online

***Be certain to submit all supporting documentation.  This information should be submitted in the format prescribed within the Required Documents section of this announcement.

***If you are found qualified for this position, you will ONLY be considered at the grade level(s) for which you applied*


APPLICANTS MUST SUBMIT ALL OF THE INFORMATION REQUESTED ON THE WEB SITE HOW DO I APPLY IF I CANNOT APPLY ON-LINE. APPLICANTS FAILING TO SUBMIT A COMPLETE APPLICATION PACKAGE WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED FOR THIS POSITION.

REQUIRED DOCUMENTS:

RESUME - showing relevant experience and education

COMPLETED QUESTIONNAIRE

VETERANS DOCUMENTATION - DD-214, SF-15 and the proof as requested on the SF-15 if claiming 10-point Veterans' Preference; DD-214 if claiming 5 point preference or VEOA eligibility (separated under honorable conditions after 3 years or more of continuous service).

DISPLACED EMPLOYEE PLACEMENT DOCUMENTS - Only required if requesting priority consideration under CTAP/ICTAP. You must submit ALL of the FOLLOWING: your most recent performance appraisal, the proof of eligibility letter from the Agency and your most current SF-50, displaying current series and grade.  In addition, you MUST meet the well qualified standards for this vacancy.

AGENCY CONTACT INFO:

Julia Baker
hone: 703-995-9625
Fax: 571-258-4052
mail: jbaker@yrci.com
Agency Information:
Departmental Management
DHRD
1400 Independence Ave SW
Rm. 17-W
Washington, DC
20250
US
Fax: 571-258-4052

WHAT TO EXPECT NEXT:

After the announcement has closed, we will conduct an evaluation of your eligibility and qualifications and determine your ranking. The most highly qualified candidates will be referred to the hiring manager for further consideration and possible interview.  We will inform you of your status upon completion of the evaluation process.

Agency Information:

Departmental Management
DHRD
1400 Independence Ave SW
Rm. 17-W
Washington, DC
20250
US
ax: 571-258-4052

Questions about this job:

Julia Baker
Phone: 703-995-9625
Fax: 571-258-4052
Email: jbaker@yrci.com

Job Announcement Number:

ES-2012-0004

Control Number: 307816300

 

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