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How to Use the USAJOBS Website to Apply for Federal Jobs?

In today's Internet- driven world, virtually everything can be done online. That includes applying for jobs—yes, even for Federal government jobs. The official Internet portal for jobs in Uncle Sam's different agencies is USAJOBS (www.usajobs.gov). From here, you can search, apply, and manage your applications.

If you're not quite Internet-savvy yet, well, it's really about time you start learning how. Aside from the convenience of being able to access all vacancy announcements from one site, you also save time, gas, and even postage fees from having to mail all your applications one by one.The resume builder feature also allows you to store up to five different resumes which you can use to apply for a vacancy that you are qualified for. You may even have the option of allowing government agencies to find you by making your resume searchable.

Let's assume that you are a first-time user of the USAJOBS portal. What should you do? Once you've already found the site by typing the URL given above on the address box on your browser, familiarize yourself with the site's layout. You can find the "Home," "Search Jobs," "My Account," and "Resource Center" on the top portion of the site. If you want to see the latest openings or want to look for vacancies in particular agencies, you can immediately search for jobs by clicking on the Search Jobs tab. You can also narrow down your search by state or keywords.

If you want to find specific information for your particular circumstance—let's say you're a student or a veteran or a senior executive or an individual with a disability, you can find more details from the Resource Center. Aside from giving tons of helpful information, the various pages also direct you to other government websites where you can glean more details about vacancies and other steps in the application process.

After getting the "lay of the land," so to speak, you can then open an account. While you do not need to create one if you simply want to search for available Federal jobs, you do need to register to be able to access the jobseeker resources like the resume builder and other features essential for you to apply for a Federal job.

You will be asked to create a profile and input your resume when you create an account. It's best to have your resume prepared so that you will just fill in the necessary fields. Once that has been completed you can start your job search and the online application process.

When you're ready to submit an application for a particular job, make sure that you read the "How to Apply" section of the announcement carefully. Prepare additional documents like transcripts and/or Veterans' Form DD-214 so that you can upload them when if it is asked for. After lodging your application, you can manage your career by logging into your account and checking what the status of your application is to the agencies you have applied to.