The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) recently published a memo to executive department heads and agencies regarding the implementation of the Trump Administration’s Executive Order) on improving the federal hiring process by placing more emphasis on candidates’ relevant knowledge, skills, competencies, and abilities.
“As an older worker, what is the best way (other than to showcase my experience) to show that I am the best candidate for the job?”
For nearly ten years, I have been asked this question many times over. Quite frankly, when I was first asked about how to market yourself as someone past their mid-40s, at best, I clumsily struggled in my response to the individual’s age-related question.
Our ‘all-volunteer’ cadre of Federal subject matter experts and hiring managers work hard to provide individuals in career transition with the best federal employment resources and information, all through monthly virtual workshops and office hours, along with special events like “Fireside Chats,” at no cost. And even though we would like to provide more help to job seekers with other career services – i.e., resume review, coaching, job search strategy, etc. – our volunteers do not have time due to life’s obligations (e.g., working full-time jobs, taking care of family needs, and spending time with loved ones).
You might be asking yourself, “How do I highlight my experiences in my resume on how they impacted my organization’s priorities?”
As a retired federal service senior executive, my response would be: “Write like an executive.” And how to write like an executive is to showcase how your significant accomplishments contributed to your organization’s priorities.
By Frieda Wiley
When I applied for my first government job more than 20 years ago, I didn’t just sprinkle my resume with keywords. I littered my resume with them, thinking I’d score an interview. As I snail-mailed my FBI internship application, I felt confident and naively optimistic. Not only did I hear crickets, but I didn’t receive even as much as a rejection letter. I was crushed.