The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), Specialty Crops Inspection (SCI) Division is responsible for developing U.S. grade standards and providing inspection, grading, certification, and audit-based services nation-wide on a user-fee basis for fresh and processed fruits and vegetables and related products. In this position, you will serve as a grader at an inspection point, processing facility or area office lab.Learn more about this agency
- The duties described are for the full-performance level. At developmental grade levels, assignments will be of more limited scope, performed with less independence and limited complexity.
- The duties may include, but are not limited to:
- Selects representative samples from the product lots in accordance with prescribed sampling and plans.
- Inspects products to determine the quality, condition, and/or compliance with U.S. Grade Standards or stated contract specifications.
- Prepares and maintains a variety of reports related to production data and grading results.
- Makes observations to determine if plant facilities, operating methods, processing equipment and personnel are in compliance with SCI sanitation requirements and FDA regulations.
- Observes raw product material to establish the suitability for processing and advises plant management of the results.
76% or greater - You may be expected to travel for this position.
Job family (Series)
Conditions Of Employment
- You must be a US Citizen or US National.
- Individuals who were born male after 12/31/1959 must be Selective Service registered or exempt.
- Satisfactory Background investigation and/or fingerprint check.
- Successful completion of one-year trial period.
- 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 https://www.e-verify.gov/
- Selectee will be subject to a pre-employment medical statement and/or exam.
- Prior to an official offer, selectee will be required to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) acknowledging/accepting that geographic mobility is a condition of employment. Failure to sign the MOU will result in withdrawal of the job offer.
- Valid state driver's license is required at the time of application.
Qualifications*THE OPEN PERIOD OF THIS ANNOUNCEMENT HAS BEEN EXTENDED TO 9/23/2021*
To qualify, you MUST meet all program and qualification requirements by the closing date of the announcement.
To be eligible, applicants must meet one of the following requirements;
- Completed all requirements for an associates, bachelors, masters, professional, doctorate, vocational, or technical degree or certificate from a qualifying educational institution within the previous two (2) years.
- Individuals who, due to military service obligation, were precluded from applying to the Recent Graduates Program during any portion of the 2-year eligibility period described above shall have a full 2-year period of eligibility upon release or discharge from active duty. This eligibility period cannot extend more than 6 years from the date on which the requirements for the academic course of study were met.
FOR THE GS-05 LEVEL: Applicants must have 3 years of general, progressively responsible experience, one year of which was equivalent in level of difficulty and responsibility to the GS-4 level in the Federal service. Experience must demonstrate the ability to:
- Analyze problems to identify significant factors, gather pertinent data, and recognize solutions, plan and organize work.
- Communicate effectively orally and in writing.
Experience must provide evidence of the knowledge, skills and abilities necessary to perform the duties of this position and show decision making responsibilities.
General clerical experience (typing, filing, routine processing, or other non-specialized repetitive tasks) is not creditable.
4-year course of study leading to a bachelor's degree
FOR THE GS-07 LEVEL: Applicants must have one year of specialized experience (equivalent to the GS-05 level) that demonstrates:
- Performs grading, sampling and/or inspection assignments of a simple and routine nature.
- Displays greater knowledge of grading principles, standards, and regulations, increased skill in identifying and describing product defect, and/or skill and knowledge in inspecting facilities.
- Draws samples of product, performs mechanical tests, attends formal training courses in grading agricultural commodities, and grades samples.
- Grades and inspects distinct products for comparison with clear standards and common contract specifications.
- Identifies and describes common product defects or diseases.
One full year of graduate level education in Agriculture, Mathematics, Engineering, Science, Business, Economics or a related field.
Superior Academic Achievement: To qualify based on superior academic achievement, you must have completed the requirements for a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution AND must meet certain GPA requirements.
TRANSCRIPTS are required.
COMBINATION OF EDUCATION & EXPERIENCE AT THE GS-05/07 GRADE LEVEL: Applicants may have combinations of successfully completed education and specialized experience to meet total qualification requirements. The total percentages must equal at least 100 percent to qualify an applicant for that grade level. Applicants may have combinations of successfully completed graduate education and specialized experience to meet total qualification requirements. The total percentages must equal at least 100 percent to qualify an applicant for that grade level.
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.
Transcripts including the date your degree was conferred are required. Applications will not be considered without this documentation.
- Recent Graduate appointments are intended to last for 1 year. Recent Graduates who satisfactorily complete all the USDA Recent Graduates Program requirements may be non-competitively converted to a Term or Permanent appointment in the competitive service. Conversion is not guaranteed. Recent Graduates converted to Term appointments may later be non-competitively converted to a Permanent competitive service position.
- If selected, official transcripts will be required prior to entrance on duty.
- A Pathways Participant Agreement will be required if you are selected for a position. The agreement must be signed by all applicable parties prior to entrance on duty.
- First time hires to the federal government normally start at the lowest rate of the salary range for the grade selected.
- 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.
- Ability to work in an environment with exposure to freezing and/or hot temperatures, fumes, dust and odors, slippery surfaces, moving materials, handling equipment, high noise levels and in close proximity to others. The work further requires working on weekends and overtime; traveling for extended periods of time; working multiple shifts and changing/rotating shifts (i.e., first, second and third).
- You must be able to perform work that requires long periods of physical exertion to lift and move boxes, cartons and heavy packages of product (often weighing over 50 pounds); prolonged periods of standing, walking, stooping, bending, and climbing; physical coordination and finger dexterity in at least one hand to perform digital examinations of commodities; normal or corrected vision in at least one eye for distance, depth perception, and color to detect abnormalities in product; the ability to assure safety in a highly-mechanized and/or noisy environment through adequate or correctable hearing; use of both legs, arms and hands to perform carrying, pulling, pushing, reaching above the shoulder, kneeling, grasping, and working with hands in water; and the ability to determine product quality organoleptically (e.g., through sight, smell and/or taste).
- Successfully complete at least 1-year of continuous service in addition to all requirements of the Program as outlined in the Participant Agreement.
- Demonstrate successful job performance.
- Meet the qualifications for the position to which the Recent Graduate will be converted.
How You Will Be Evaluated
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.
Category rating procedures will be used to rank and select eligible candidates. The following quality categories will be used: Best Qualified, Well Qualified, and Qualified. Within each quality category, veterans' preference eligibles will receive selection priority over non-veterans. Your final category placement will be based on your responses to the assessment questionnaire.
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.
To preview the application questionnaire, please visit: https://apply.usastaffing.gov/ViewQuestionnaire/11226171
The following documents are required for your applicant package to be complete. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, your system failure or downtime, 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; and 5) supervisors name and phone number for each work period listed and whether or not they may be contacted for reference checks.
- College Transcripts: You must submit a copy of your college transcripts. An unofficial copy is sufficient with the application; 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 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. For further information, visit the following: Foreign Education Evaluation. All transcripts must be in English or include an English translation.
- If claiming veterans' 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 within 120 days after the date the certification is submitted. The certification must be on the letterhead of the appropriate military branch and include the dates of military service. Veterans' 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 veterans' 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
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.
How to Apply
Please read the entire announcement and all instructions before you begin. You must complete this application process and submit all required documents electronically by 11:59p.m. Eastern Time (ET) on the closing date of this announcement.
Applying online is highly encouraged. We are available to assist you during business hours (normally 8:00a.m. - 4:00p.m., Monday - Friday). If applying online poses a hardship, contact the Agency Contact listed below well before the closing date for an alternate method. All hardship application packages must be complete and submitted no later than noon ET on the closing date of the announcement in order to be entered into the system prior to its closing.
This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities on a case-by-case basis; contact the Agency Contact to request this.
Step 1: Create a USAJOBS account (if you do not already have one) at www.usajobs.gov. It is recommended that as part of your profile you set up automatic email notification to be informed when the status of your application changes. If you choose not to set up this automatic notification, then you will have to log into your USAJOBS account to check on the status of your application.
Step 2: Create a Resume with USAJOBS or upload a Resume into your USAJOBS account. You may want to customize your resume to ensure it documents duties and accomplishments you have gained that are directly related to this position in order to verify that qualifications are met. In addition, your resume must support your responses to the online questionnaire (you may preview the online questionnaire by clicking on the link at the end of the How You Will Be Evaluated section of the job announcement).
Step 3: Click "Apply Online" and follow the prompts to complete the Occupational Questionnaire and attach any additional documents that may be required. You can update your application or documents anytime while the announcement is open. Simply log into your USAJOBS account and click on "Application Status." Click on the position title, and then select "Update Application" to continue.
NOTE: If a document is resubmitted, it replaces the previous submission, which means the previous document is no longer available to the Human Resources Office. If you are adding to, rather than replacing a previous submission, you must upload both the old document and the new document. You must verify that uploaded documents from USAJOBS transfer into the Agency's staffing system as there is a limitation to the number of documents that can be transferred. However, once in the Agency's staffing system, you will have the opportunity to upload additional documents. Applicants may combine all like required documents (e.g. SF-50s or veteran docs) into one or more files and scan for uploading into the application. Each file must not exceed 5MB. Grouping like documents into files will simplify the application process. Documents must be in one of the following formats: GIF, JPEG, JPG, PDF, PNG, RTF, or Word (DOC or DOCX). Uploaded documents may not require a password, digital signature, or other encryption to open.
Agency contact information
APHIS Human Resources
AddressAgricultural Marketing Service
USDA APHIS MRPBS
250 Marquette Avenue, Suite 410
Minneapolis, MN 55401
You can make a difference! The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Marketing and Regulatory Programs (MRP) needs bright, energetic and committed professionals to facilitate the domestic and international marketing of U.S. agricultural products and to protect the health and care of animals and plants in the United States. MRP offers an array of occupations and is committed to diversity in the workplace. We operate in domestic and global markets. Be part of an organization that protects the health and agriculture of the American people. Join our team!
Your application will be reviewed to verify that you meet the eligibility and qualification requirements for the position prior to issuing referral lists to the selecting official. If further evaluation or interviews are required, you will be contacted.
Multiple positions may be filled from this announcement
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/613582800. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.