This position is located within a USDA Natural Resources Conservation state, area, or field office within a designated state.
This position provides assistance to the Soil and Water Conservation District assigned to the field office within the assigned Natural Resources area; and to work with landowners to apply and maintain a number of conservation practices and review of financial assistance requests under the provision of federal, state, and local agriculture programs.
Provides information to farmers, ranchers and other rural residents on the kind of assistance available from NRCS and other USDA agencies.
Assists with conducting engineer surveys to design mechanical practices to be utilized in conservation planning.
Advises landowners on eligibility prerequisites and conditions that must be satisfied to qualify for program acceptance and payments.
Provides technical support to conservation planners in resource planning by utilizing survey tools and planning software.
Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position.
Job family (Series)
0458 Soil Conservation Technician
Conditions of Employment
You must be a US Citizen or US National.
Males born after 12/31/1959 must be Selective Service registered or exempt.
Subject to satisfactory adjudication of background investigation and/or fingerprint check.
Successful completion of one-year probationary period, unless previously served.
Direct Deposit: Per Public Law 104-134 all Federal employees are required to have federal payments made by direct deposit to their financial institution.
Successfully pass the E-Verify employment verification check. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, visit E-Verify at https://www.e-verify.gov/.
Must possess and maintain a valid state motor vehicle operator's license for the type of vehicle(s) operated to perform the duties of this position.
Applicants must meet all qualifications and eligibility requirements by the closing date of the announcement including specialized experience and/or education, as defined below.
Minimum Qualification Requirement: To be considered minimally qualified for this position, you must demonstrate that you have the required specialized experience and/or education for the respective grade level(s) in which you are applying:
Specialized Experience: One or more full-time years (12-months) of specialized work experience, equivalent to at least the GS-04 grade level in the Federal service, performing the following duties:
gathering and compiling planning data on soil limitations, erosion, surface drainage, and sedimentation to make preliminary engineering surveys;
assisting in the development of large area resource conservation plans;
working with landowners on the application and maintenance of conservation practices. (Your resume must CLEARLY demonstrate this experience)
Education: Successful completion of a full 4-year course of study leading to a bachelor's degree (a) with major study in forestry, range management, agriculture, or a subject-matter field directly related to the position, or (b) that included at least 24 semester hours in any combination of courses such as forestry, agriculture, crop or plant science, range management or conservation, wildlife management, watershed management, soil science, natural resources (except marine fisheries and oceanography), outdoor recreation management, civil or forest engineering, or wildland fire science. No more than 6 semester hours in mathematics is creditable. (Must submit transcripts as proof of any claimed education.)
Combination of experience and education: You must have a combination of education and experience as listed above which when combined totals 100% of the necessary education and experience to qualify for this position. Only education in excess of the first 60 semester hours of a course of study leading to a bachelor's degree is creditable toward meeting the specialized experience requirements. Two full academic years of study, or 60 semester hours, beyond the second year is equivalent to l year of specialized experience. The total percentage must equal at least 100 percent to qualify an applicant for GS-5. (Must provide transcripts) IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE. If your resume does not support your questionnaire answers, we will not allow credit for your response(s).
Specialized Experience: One or more full-time years (12-months) of specialized work experience, equivalent to at least the GS-05 grade level in the Federal service, performing the following duties:
advising landowners on the use of one or several single alternative practices such as nutrient management, roof runoff structures, contour cultivation, grassed waterways, and terracing;
installing and maintaining soil and water conservation measures on farms, ranches, or agricultural land;
performing surveying work, reducing notes and drafting specifications for various stabilization or diversion practices;
providing advice on merging conservation practices using established objectives. (Your resume must CLEARLY demonstrate this experience)
Education Substitution for GS-06: Successful completion of one full year of graduate education from an accredited college or university leading to a master's degree with a major course of study in agriculture, forestry, range management, or another subject-matter field directly related to the position; OR
Combination of experience and education: You must have a combination of education and experience as listed above which when combined totals 100% of the necessary education and experience to qualify for this position. Only graduate education is creditable toward meeting the specialized experience requirements. One full academic year of graduate study, or 18 semester hours, is equivalent to 1 year of specialized experience. The total percentage must equal at least 100 percent to qualify an applicant for GS-6. (Must provide transcripts) IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE. If your resume does not support your questionnaire answers, we will not allow credit for your response(s).
Specialized Experience: One or more full-time years (12-months) of specialized work experience, equivalent to at least the GS-06 grade level in the Federal service, performing the following duties:
designing, installing and maintaining a variety of nonroutine conservation measures on public and privately owned land including farms, parks, shoreline, dams and reservoir areas, forests, and/or wildlife habitats; advising property holders on the effectiveness of applying soil and water conservation practices;
conducting basic research in support of conservation planning efforts;
performing surveying work, reducing notes and drafting specifications for various stabilization or diversion practices;
providing advice on merging conservation practices using established objectives;
developing and maintaining constructive relationships with clients, partners, and Conservation Districts. (Your resume must CLEARLY demonstrate this experience)
Education Substitution for GS-07: One full year of graduate education from an accredited college or university leading to a master's degree with a major course of study in agriculture, forestry, range management, or another subject-matter field directly related to the position; OR
Combination of experience and education: You must have a combination of education and experience as listed above which when combined totals 100% of the necessary education and experience to qualify for this position. Only graduate education is creditable toward meeting the specialized experience requirements. One full academic year of graduate study, or 18 semester hours, is equivalent to 1 year of specialized experience. The total percentage must equal at least 100 percent to qualify an applicant for GS-7. (Must provide transcripts) IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE MAY NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE. If your resume does not support your questionnaire answers, we will not allow credit for your response(s).
For more information on the qualifications for this position, click here: https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/classification-qualifications/general-schedule-qualification-standards/0400/soil-conservation-technician-series-0458/
Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.
If you are selected for a position with further promotion potential, you will be placed under a career development plan, and may be non-competitively promoted if you successfully complete the requirements and if recommended by management. However, promotion is neither implied nor guaranteed.
You must submit a copy of your college transcripts or a list of college courses with credit hours, dates completed, and grades received to verify all education requirements (i.e. substitution of education and/or basic education requirement). If a relevant course is not clearly qualifying (e.g. special topic, seminar, research, thesis, obscure or misleading course title, etc.), please submit an official course syllabi and/or detailed course description from the university/college for that particular course to ensure you are properly evaluated. Please note that qualifications determinations are based solely on the information submitted for each particular vacancy announcement. You must document all requirements on every vacancy; we cannot use previous determinations as a basis for rating. All required information must be received by the closing date of this announcement, and non-submission of all required documents/documentation will result in non-consideration. Unofficial transcripts will be accepted. This information must be received by the closing date of this announcement. Non-submission of these documents will result in non-consideration. Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications.
Foreign Education: If you are using education completed in foreign colleges or universities to meet the qualification requirements, you must show that the education credentials have been evaluated by a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign education programs and such education has been deemed equivalent to that gained in an accredited U.S. education program; or full credit has been given for the courses at a U.S. accredited college or university. For further information, visit: https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html
This position may be eligible for telework within the local commuting area of the position and other flexible work arrangements. Employee participation is at the discretion of the supervisor.
PLEASE NOTE: In the interest of filling these positions as efficiently as possible, we are requiring the following:
If called for an interview, applicants must be available to interview within 3 business days of being contacted.
If a tentative job offer is extended, selectee will have 2 business days in which to accept or decline.
Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP), Reemployment Priority List (RPL), or Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP): Visit the OPM website for information on how to apply as a CTAP, RPL, or ICTAP eligible. To exercise selection priority for this vacancy, CTAP/RPL/ICTAP candidates must meet the basic eligibility requirements and all selective factors. CTAP/ICTAP candidates must be rated and determined to be well qualified (or above) based on an evaluation of the competencies listed in the How You Will Be Evaluated section. When assessed through a score-based category rating method, CTAP/ICTAP applicants must receive a rating of at least 85 out of a possible 100.
Active Duty Service Members You must submit a statement of discharge/certification of release or an official written document from the armed forces that certifies you are expected to be discharged or released from active duty service in the armed forces under honorable conditions no later than 120 days from the date the certification is signed.Enlisted Record Briefs and military identification do NOT qualify as official documentation. Although veteran preference points are not assigned under category rating procedures, veteran preference eligibles are listed ahead of non-veterans within each category for which they are qualified. In addition, qualified veterans with a compensable service-connected disability of 10% or more are placed at the top of the highest quality category (i.e. Best Qualified).
Promotion Potential: If you are selected for a position with further promotion potential, you will be placed under a career development plan, and may be non-competitively promoted if you successfully complete the requirements and if recommended by management. However, promotion is neither implied nor guaranteed.
Physical Demands: The work requires regular and routine prolonged walking over field terrain and bending, lifting, and stretching when utilizing survey instruments and equipment.
Work Environment: The work involves regular and recurring exposure to agricultural and construction type equipment while in operation. There may be exposure to heat snow and ice as well as herbicide and chemical spray operations, which require safety precautions
How You Will Be Evaluated
You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.
Applications will be evaluated in accordance with Office of Personnel Management's (OPM) Delegated Examining Procedures and USDA policy using category rating. Applicants who meet basic minimum qualifications will be placed in one of three categories: Best Qualified, Well Qualified, or Qualified. Within these categories, applicants eligible for veteran's preference will receive selection priority over non-veterans. Category placement will be determined based on applicants' quality of experience and the extent they possess the following knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSA) or competencies:
Customer Service, Data Collection and Analysis, Oral Communication, and Writing
Your application, including the online Assessment Questionnaire, will be reviewed to determine if you meet (a) minimum qualification requirements and (b) the resume supports the answers provided to the job-specific questions. Your resume must clearly support your responses to all the questions addressing experience and education relevant to this position. Those determined to be in the best qualified category will be referred to the selecting official for consideration.
Note: If, after reviewing your resume and/or supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have inflated your qualifications and or experience, your score may be adjusted to more accurately reflect your abilities, or you may be found ineligible. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating. Providing inaccurate information on Federal documents could be grounds for non-selection or disciplinary action up to including removal from the Federal service.
Clicking the link below will present a preview of the application form; i.e. the online questionnaire. The application form link below will only provide a preview and does not initiate the application process. To initiate the online application process, click the "Apply" button to the right.
To view the application form, visit: https://apply.usastaffing.gov/ViewQuestionnaire/10853778
Background checks and security clearance
Drug test required
Position sensitivity and risk
Non-sensitive (NS)/Low Risk
Trust determination process
The following documents are required for your applicant package to be complete. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, your system failure, etc. Encrypted documents will not be accepted. Failure to submit required, legible documents may result in loss of consideration.
Resume that includes:1) personal information such as name, address, contact information; 2) education; 3) detailed work experience related to this position as described in the major duties including work schedule, hours worked per week, dates of employment; title, series, grade (if applicable); 4) other qualifications.
A complete Assessment Questionnaire
Other supporting documents:
Veterans Preference Documentation, if applicable
College transcript(s) if qualifying based on education or to meet basic requirements, if applicable
Any other supporting documentation required for verification as described in the announcement
If education is required or you are using education to qualify, you must submit a copy of your college transcripts. An unofficial copy is sufficient with the application if it includes your name and the necessary course information; however, if you are selected, you will be required to submit official transcripts prior to entering on duty. Education must have been successfully obtained from an accredited school, college or university. If any education was completed at a foreign institute, you must submit with your application evidence that the institute was appropriately accredited by an accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as equivalent to U.S. education standards. There are private organizations that specialize in this evaluation and a fee is normally associated with this service. For a list of private organizations that evaluate education, visit the NACES website. All transcripts must be in English or include an English translation.
If claiming veteran's preference, you must submit a DD214, Certificate of Release from Active Duty, which shows dates of service and discharge under honorable conditions. If currently on active duty you must submit a certification of expected discharge or release from active duty service under honorable conditions not later than 120 days after the date the certification is submitted. Veteran's preference must be verified prior to appointment. Without this documentation, you will not receive veteran's preference and your application will be evaluated based on the material(s) submitted.
If claiming 10-point veteran's preference you must provide the DD214 or certification requirements (see above bullet), plus the proof of entitlement of this preference as listed on the SF-15 Application for 10-point Veterans' Preference. The SF-15 should be included but is not required. Failure to submit these documents could result in the determination that there is insufficient documentation to support your claim for 10-point preference. For more information on veterans' preference visit FEDSHIREVETS
Surplus or displaced employees eligible for CTAP, RPL, or ICTAP priority must provide: proof of eligibility (RIF separation notice, notice of proposed removal for declining a transfer of function or directed reassignment to another commuting area, notice of disability annuity termination), SF-50 documenting separation (as applicable), and your most recent SF-50 noting position, grade level, and duty location with your application per 5 CFR 330.
A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.
Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.
This job is open to
Career transition (CTAP, ICTAP, RPL)
Federal employees who meet the definition of a "surplus" or "displaced" employee.
U.S. citizens, nationals or those who owe allegiance to the U.S.