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    The position is located in the Office of Business Operations, Acquisitions and Contracting Branch, Central Federal Lands Highway Division (CFLHD), Federal Highway administration in Lakewood, Colorado. CFLHD is responsible for the program administration of the Federal Lands Transportation Program (FLTP) and the Federal Lands Access Program (FLAP) and other programs in 14 western states.

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    As a Contract Specialist, you will:

    • Serve as subject matter specialist for, and maintain expertise in, Federal Procurement Law, Federal and Departmental regulations and good business practices in planning and performing the Division's contracting processes. Work closely with the Acquisitions Team Leader/Contracting Officer to accomplish the timely development, advertisement, selection, awarding and administration of engineering services, construction services, simplified acquisitions, and support related acquisitions.
    • Be responsible for advising and consulting with the Acquisitions Team Leader/Contracting Officer, Construction Branch and legal counsel regarding the settlement of contractor claims and in the preparation of Contracting Officer decisions and settlement of claims.

    • Exercise expertise and good business judgment in the interpretation and implementation of procurement policies, procedures, standards and guidance for the formulation and administration of all contract types including simplified, construction and architect & engineering (A/E) contracts. Coordinate with and provide direct support as a team member to the acquisition team relative to procurement activities within the Division and to help promote uniform application throughout the agency.

    The ideal candidate for this position is a mid-career individual with a solid background and experience in pre-award, award and administration of contracts using the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) specifically Parts 8, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 36, and 37.  He or she would possess expertise in the award of a wide variety of contract types for the acquisition of simplified requirements to include non-personal services, construction, and architect and engineering support services. Federal Acquisition Certification in Contracting (FAC-C) in Level I or above is highly desirable.

    *PLEASE NOTE: Given our continuing need for professionals in this field, we will routinely review applications and refer the top candidates for potential interviews multiple times during the open period of the announcement.  Reviews and referrals of applications will be completed on an as needed basis with the initial review occurring ten days after the opening date.

    Travel Required

    Occasional travel - Position requires occasional travel.

    Supervisory status


    Promotion Potential


  • Job family (Series)

    1102 Contracting

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    Conditions Of Employment

    • You must be a U.S. citizen & meet specialized experience to qualify.
    • Submit application and resume online by 11:59 PM EST on the closing date.
    • Applicable documents are required for the Mandatory Education requirements.
    • Direct Hire Authority will be used to fill this position.


    • SELECTIVE SERVICE: Males born after 12/31/1959 must be registered for the Selective Service.
    • PROBATIONARY PERIOD: Applicants may be required to successfully complete a one-year probationary period (unless already completed).
    • CONFIDENTIAL FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE REPORT: The Ethics in Government Act of 1978 requires the applicant selected for this position to submit a Confidential Financial Disclosure Report (OGE Form 450) within 30 days of appointment and annually thereafter.
    • GOVERNMENT TRAVEL CARD: This position involves some travel.  A government contractor-issued travel card will be issued and must be retained for official business only.


    To meet the basic qualifications for this position, you must (1) meet the Mandatory Education Requirement for the series, AND (2) provide a copy of your transcripts or other applicable documentation for verification. The selecting official will review your application for (3) the specialized experience. Please review the following information before proceeding with the application process: 

    (1) All applicants must meet the education requirements under A or B to qualify for applying to a GS-11-12 contracting position:

    A. A 4-year course of study leading to a bachelor's degree with a major in any field;  


    B. At least 24 semester hours in any combination of the following fields: accounting, business, finance, law, contracts, purchasing, economics, industrial management, marketing, quantitative methods, or organization and management. 

    For additional information, please refer to the OPM qualifications standard for GS-1102: Contracting Series at: https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/classification-qualifications/general-schedule-qualification-standards/1100/contracting-series-1102/.

    (2) Upload the appropriate document(s) to your application for verification purposes.

    Applicants must meet all qualification requirements by the closing date of this announcement. Exception: Students enrolled in a qualifying degree program can apply if the anticipated graduation date is within six months of closing date of the announcement. Graduation transcript must be received before start date.

    (3) Specialized Experience:

    The selecting official will review your application for the following experience to determine who they wish to interview.  Be sure to verify how you meet this experience in your resume.  

    Note - applicants who are qualifying based on experience must possess at least one year of specialized experience at or equivalent to work at the next lower level, that provided the knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform successfully the work of the position, in addition to meeting the basic requirements in paragraph A or B above.

    • Exception: Employees in GS-1102 positions will be considered to have met the standard for positions they occupy on January 1, 2000. Employees who occupy GS-1102 positions at grades 5 through 12 will be considered to meet the basic requirements for other GS-1102 positions up to and including those classified at GS-12. This includes positions at other agencies and promotions up through grade 12. However, employees must meet specialized experience requirements when seeking another position.

    For the GS-11:

    On Experience, at least one year of experience, equal or equivalent to the GS-09 grade levelwhich included:

    • Experience using procurement regulations and a variety of contracting procedures for pre-award or post-award phases, such as in the procurement of supplies, services or equipment.
    • Experience providing technical assistance to staff and management.

    On Education, you must have:

    • 3 full academic years of progressively higher level graduate education* leading to a Ph.D. degree or Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree.

    You can also qualify based on a combination of graduate education* and experience.

    *Graduate Education Requirement: To qualify for GS-1102-11 positions on the basis of graduate education, graduate education in one or a combination of the following fields is required: accounting, business, finance, law, contracts, purchasing, economics, industrial management, marketing, quantitative methods, or organization and management.

    For the GS-12:

    On Experience, at least one year of experience, equal or equivalent to the GS-11 grade levelwhich included:

    • Experience providing guidance to technical personnel in the development and formulation of contracting approaches.
    • Experience with a range of contracting methods and contract types, including formally advertised acquisitions and negotiated acquisitions.
    • Experience procuring specialized services, such as architectural and engineering services.

    You cannot qualify on education at this level, you must have experience.

    KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES (KSAs): Your qualifications will be evaluated on the basis of your level of knowledge, skills, abilities and/or competencies in the following areas:

    • Contracting/Procurement - Knowledge of various types of contracts, techniques, or requirements (for example, Federal Acquisitions Regulations) for contracting or procurement, and contract negotiation and administration.
    • Negotiation - Works with others towards an agreement that may involve exchanging specific resources or resolving differences.
    • Technology Application - Uses machines, tools, instruments, or equipment effectively; uses computers and computer applications to analyze and communicate information in the appropriate format.
    • Acquisition Strategy - Knowledge of the principles and methods for developing an integrated acquisition management plan that describes the business, technical, and support strategies, including the relationship between the acquisition phases, work efforts, and key program events (for example, decision points, contract awards, test activities).

    For all types of consideration, 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, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment.  You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.


    See the Qualifications section for Mandatory Education Requirements.

    Additional information

    Displaced employees may be eligible for ICTAP or CTAP priority consideration. For more information, please review the OPM Employee's Guide to Career Transition.

    PLEASE NOTE:  This vacancy may be used to fill similar positions within 90 days for this location.

    How You Will Be Evaluated

    All applicants who provided the appropriate documentation per the mandatory education requirements will be reviewed.  Applicants will not be rated or ranked.  Veteran's Preference does NOT apply.

    All applications that are verified to meet the basic qualifications will be referred to the selecting official.

    DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE: PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE WILL NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.  All answers provided in the on-line process must be substantiated by a resume. If, upon review, it is determined that your resume and/or supporting documents do not support your answer choices, your application may be removed from consideration.

    Ultimately, the Automated Staffing Office is responsible for determining an applicant's eligibility. Please ensure that your resume provides enough detail to support your specialized experience and the KSA's.  

    To preview questions please click here.

    Background checks and security clearance

    Security clearance


    Drug test required


    Position sensitivity and risk

    Moderate Risk (MR)

    Trust determination process


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    Required Documents

    ALL Applicants must provide a resume that fully supports the required specialized experience and was created within USA Jobs Resume Builder and respond to the vacancy questions by the closing date of the vacancy. 

    The following is a list of documents that are only required based on the type of position and consideration for which you are applying.  Please review each of the following sections to determine which, if any, additional documents you need to provide with your application.
    TRANSCRIPTS - Transcripts are required as there is a stated education requirement for the series. 

    • The transcripts need not be official, but must show that you meet the stated education requirements, including specific major or class requirements. Provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. 
    • Foreign education must be reviewed by an organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. You must show proof the education credentials have been deemed to be at least equivalent to that gained in conventional U.S. education program. For special instructions pertaining to foreign education and a list of organizations that can evaluate foreign education, see the Department of Education website.
    • If you are currently in, or have previously held, a government position in the same series and grade, you may upload a SF-50 for verification purposes and referral. Transcript(s) will still be required if you are selected for the position. 

    DISPLACED EMPLOYEES: If requesting consideration under the Career Transition Assistance Program (CTAP) or Interagency CTAP program (ICTAP), you must meet the well qualified standards for this vacancy (meeting minimum requirements for position and scoring at least an 85 or falling in the Gold Category)  and provide all of the following documents:  

    • your most recent performance appraisal,
    • the proof of eligibility letter from the Agency, and
    • your most current SF-50, displaying current series and grade.

    Failure to submit any of the required documents by the closing date of the vacancy will result in your removal from consideration for this position. Please review your application prior to final submission and ensure you have submitted all appropriate documents. Uploading documents to USAJobs does NOT ensure inclusion with your application to our system.  You must verify that the documents are in the system with your application prior to final submission.

    If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

    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. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

    Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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    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.


    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.

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    How to Apply

    You must submit a complete application package (including resume, vacancy questions and supporting documents) no later than midnight Eastern Time on the closing date of the announcement.

    • To begin, click the Apply Online button on the job announcement.
    • Follow the directions to register, submit all required documents and complete the assessment questionnaire.
    • You may review your saved application(s) at https://my.usajobs.gov.

    If you are having difficulty applying online, please contact the DOT Automated Staffing Office via email at Transjobs@dot.gov.

    Agency contact information

    Automated Staffing Office








    Submit Application and Documents Online
    1200 New Jersey Ave SE / HAHR - 50
    Washington, District of Columbia 20590
    United States
    Learn more about this agency

    Real solutions to meet genuine challenges. Innovative ideas to take on growing realities. That's the Federal Highway Administration - Leaders in Paving the Way on the Road to Success

    The Department of Transportation (DOT) is ranked #5 in the 2019 best places to work in the Federal Government!

    Next steps

    As needed, a Human Resources Specialist will issue certificate(s), or list(s) of applications, which will then be forwarded to the selecting official for further consideration. At this point, you may check online to see if your application was referred by logging in at MYUSAJOBS and clicking on "Applications."

    From this point on the selecting official determines all aspects of the hiring process. If they wish to contact you for an interview or for hire, they will do so directly. Otherwise, when a selection is made, we will update your application status online and the Human Resources Specialist for the vacancy will notify you by email.

Fair & Transparent

The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy And gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

Reasonable Accommodation Policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

A reasonable accommodation is any change to a job, the work environment, or the way things are usually done that enables an individual with a disability to apply for a job, perform job duties or receive equal access to job benefits.

Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodations when:

  • An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.

You can request a reasonable accommodation at any time during the application or hiring process or while on the job. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Legal and regulatory guidance

This job originated on www.usajobs.gov. For the full announcement and to apply, visit www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/574410700. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.