This Position Is No Longer Available
  1. Overview
  2. Duties
  3. Qualifications & Evaluations
  4. Benefits & Other Info
  5. How to Apply

Job Title:System Engineer (Interdisciplinary), GS-830/850/855-14 (Open to DOT employees only) DB

Department:Department Of Transportation

Agency:U.S. Department of Transportation

Job Announcement Number:FRA.S-2012-0027

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.


$84,697.00 to $110,104.00 / Per Year


Monday, April 2, 2012 to Monday, April 23, 2012




Full Time - - Permanent




1 vacancy - Birmingham, AL, USView Map
1 vacancy - Phoenix, AZ, USView Map
1 vacancy - Tucson, AZ, USView Map
1 vacancy - Los Angeles, CA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Oakland, CA, USView Map
More Locations  (41)


Current Department of Transportation employees with status only


The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is responsible for ensuring safety of the Nation's passenger and freight rail operations and infrastructure by promoting safe, efficient and accessible rail transportation. The mission and focus of FRA has grown to include the design and management of an unprecedented investment in the creation of a nationwide passenger rail network. FRA is providing leadership for the creation of a more balanced transportation system, transforming the way Americans travel.

NOTE:  There is only one position being filled.  You must identify the locations(s) for which you wish to be considered.

This is a mobile work position, meaning the work requires the selectee to travel off site the majority of the time and use the selectee's home as his or her duty location. The Agency has determined that this duty location must be in the Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) of any of the listed cities.
*The Salary will be adjusted based on the locality pay of the selectee's duty location.

A Secret Clearance is required.

NOTE:  If you are selected for this position, you must be able to successfully complete an extensive background investigation to attain a Secret Clearance; you must also successfully pass pre-employment tests for illegal drug use, and random testing for illegal drug use during your employment in this position.

This position is located in the Office of Railroad Safety, Office of the Deputy AA for Regulatory & Legislative Affairs.  You will serve as an authority on the application of safety-critical systems used in high speed, intercity, or commuter passenger rail operations.  You will exercise a high degree of originality and sound judgment in identifying emerging issues and coordinating the resolution of those issues within FRA regulatory and waiver processes, industry organizations, and professional venues.  Your unique function is the safety of mechanical, electrical, and electronic systems used in high speed, intercity, or commuter passenger rail operations.  As such, you will have a strong knowledge of high speed rail, intercity, and commuter passenger rail transportation operations, infrastructure, and organizational arrangements.  You will possess a strong ability to work constructively with the international supply industry, the railroads, and FRA staff to ensure proper definition of system requirements, to guide development of suitable technologies, and to evaluate those technologies in regulatory settings.

The ideal candidate for this position is a senior level Engineer with experience evaluating mechanical, electrical, and/or electronic technology and systems used within the transportation industry.  Rail experience is highly desirable.  This candidate should have experience with transportation industry standards and procedural instructions as they relate to engineering design and specification.  Expert level oral and written communication skills are essential. 



  • You must be a U.S. citizen and meet specialized experience
  • Submit application and resume online by 11:59 PM EST on the closing date
  • Provide all required documents by closing date
  • Position is telework eligible
  • Announcement may be used to fill similar positions within 30 days


Back to top

As a System Engineer (Interdisciplinary), you will:

  • Serve as subject matter technical expert on safety issues related to safety-critical systems used on high speed, intercity, and commuter passenger rail systems.
  • Provide authoritative advice and recommendations for development of regulations and orders pertaining to the safety of high speed, intercity, and commuter passenger rail safety critical mechanical and electrical/electronic systems.
  • Develop and recommend adoption of procedures and protocols for mechanical, electrical, and electronic passenger rail systems that come before the agency for special approvals or waivers.
  •  Evaluate and render authoritative expert administrative opinions on specific mechanical, electrical, or electronic systems used for high speed, intercity, and commuter passenger rail operations including train logic, trainset performance, failure monitoring, communications and control, and advanced train control systems.  Serve as the focal point for the safety review of new or modified systems with respect to validation of systems as built against requirements as stated in product specifications and expected actual service needs.  Provide technical guidance on hazard identification and mitigation processes used to evaluate risk.
  • Maintain current knowledge of developments in mechanical, electrical, electronic, and/or systems engineering and the general area of safety critical systems by surveying relevant literature, participating in professional societies and industry panels, and maintaining liaison with other agencies and the academic community.
  • Represent the Office of Railroad Safety, and FRA, as an expert in the area of high speed rail systems engineering in appropriate departmental and industry committees and task forces.
  • Serve as team leader for examination of safety issues related to the core expertise, including multi-disciplinary team assignments
  • Serve as contracting officer’s technical representative as assigned.


Back to top

To meet the minimum qualifications for this position, you must (1) meet the Education Requirement for the series, (2) provide a copy of transcripts for verification, AND (3) meet the experience qualifications for the grade at which you are requesting consideration.

LEVEL To qualify, you must have at least one year of specialized experience equal or equivalent to the following:
  • Experience applying engineering principles and practices as they relate to safety rules, standards, and procedural instructions in the transportation industry.
  • Experience conducting varied types of technical  analyses that involve any of the following:  railroad operation, railroad safety processes and procedures, railroad safety equipment, the development of new passenger railroad rolling stock and locomotives.
  • Experience providing expert advice and guidance in various internal and external meeting, conferences, and training sessions on issues related to transportation industry safety initiatives, safety processes and procedures, and development of new equipment.
Applicants must meet all qualification requirements by the closing date of this announcement.


MANDATORY EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS: All applicants must meet one of the following requirements to qualify for consideration for an engineering position:

  • Successful completion of a professional engineering degree at an accredited university or college. OR
  • Have a combination of college level education or training AND technical experience that has furnished you with (1) a thorough knowledge of the physical and mathematical sciences underlying professional engineering, and (2) a good understanding, both theoretical and practical, of the engineering sciences and techniques and their applications to one of the branches of engineering. The adequacy of such background must be demonstrated by one of the following:
  • Professional registration as a engineer.
  • Evidence of Passing the Engineer-in-Training Written Test.
  • Successful documented completion of at least 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences as described by OPM.
  • Successful completion of a curriculum leading to a bachelor's degree in engineering technology or in an appropriate professional field and at least 1 year of professional engineering experience acquired under professional engineering supervision and guidance Please review the OPM page on specifics about required curriculum and for more information on qualifications, please visit GS-800: All Professional Engineering Positions qualifications.



  • Males born after 12/31/1959 must be registered for the Selective Service.
  • You must complete a one-year supervisory probationary period (unless already completed).
  • Government Travel Card - You must be able to obtain and retain a Government contractor-issued travel card to be used for official business as a condition of employment. If unable to obtain and/or retain a card, you may be subject to removal. Those who fail to meet this condition of employment will have our offer of employment rescinded.


If you meet the qualification requirements, your application will be placed in one of four categories: Platinum, Gold, Silver or Bronze, which is based upon your responses to the vacancy questions. Within these categories, applicants eligible for veteran's preference that have provided supporting documents will receive selection priority over non-veterans. The top rated applications will be reviewed for the quality of your experience, education and training relevant to the position. If your resume does not support the specialized experience, or if your application does not support your answers to the Vacancy Specific Questions, your final rating may be modified and/or you may be disqualified from consideration.
To preview questions please click here.


Back to top
Benefits include health and life insurance, annual and sick leave, and retirement benefits. Explore the major benefits offered to most Federal Employees here. This position is telework eligible.


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


Back to top
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
If you are having difficulty applying online, send an email to or call us at (202)366-1298.


The following documents must be provided by the close date:
  • RESUME - Showing relevant experience and education and fully supporting the required specialized experience.
  • TRANSCRIPTS - Verifying that you meet the stated education requirements for the series OR an SF-50 showing that you have already qualified and worked in the federal service in this series. The transcripts need not be official. If you are qualifying based on possessing a current Professional Engineer (PE) license, or passing the Engineer in Training (EIT) exam, please provide a copy of PE license or written documented proof of passing the EIT.
  • VETERANS - In order to be considered as a preference eligible, you must submit a copy of your Certificate of Release or Discharge From Active Duty, DD214. Your DD214 need not be official but must show the type of discharge and dates of active duty. If you are claiming preference eligibility as a disabled veteran, you must submit proof of entitlement of this preference which is normally a valid letter from the Department of Veterans Affairs certifying to the present existence of the service-connected disability and indicating the percentage of your disability.
  • SPECIAL APPOINTING AUTHORITY DOCUMENTS - If requesting concurrent consideration for Non-competitive (NC) appointment eligibility (e.g. military spouse or persons with disabilities), you must provide appropriate supporting documentation such as PCS orders describing move & marriage certificate; letter from VA or DD214 describing 100% disability of spouse; letter from State Vocational Office certifying disability, etc. For more information, visit military spouse NC appointments or Persons with Disabilities NC appointments. Documents are only required if requesting non-competitive consideration.
  • DISPLACED EMPLOYEE PLACEMENT DOCUMENTS - Only required if requesting priority consideration under CTAP/ICTAP. You must submit ALL of the following: (1) your most recent performance appraisal, (2) the proof of eligibility letter from the Agency, and (3) your most current SF-50, displaying current series and grade. In addition, you must meet the well qualified standards for this vacancy (falling in the Gold Category).
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.


Automated Staffing Office
Phone: 202-366-1298
Fax: 571-258-4052
Agency Information:
Submit Application and Documents Online
1200 New Jersey Ave SE / HAHR - 50
Washington, DC
Fax: 571-258-4052


You may check your application status by logging into your USAJOBS account. Within two weeks of the closing date, your application will be reviewed and rated. The most highly qualified candidates in the top group will be referred to the hiring manager for further consideration. If you are selected for an interview, the hiring manager will contact you directly. Once a hiring decision is made, we will notify all applicants of their final status.

Additional Duty Location Info

1 vacancy - Birmingham, AL, USView Map
1 vacancy - Phoenix, AZ, USView Map
1 vacancy - Tucson, AZ, USView Map
1 vacancy - Los Angeles, CA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Oakland, CA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Sacramento, CA, USView Map
1 vacancy - San Diego, CA, USView Map
1 vacancy - San Francisco, CA, USView Map
1 vacancy - San Jose, CA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Denver, CO, USView Map
1 vacancy - Washington, DC, USView Map
1 vacancy - Jacksonville, FL, USView Map
1 vacancy - Miami, FL, USView Map
1 vacancy - Orlando, FL, USView Map
1 vacancy - Atlanta, GA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Chicago, IL, USView Map
1 vacancy - Indianapolis, IN, USView Map
1 vacancy - New Orleans, LA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Baltimore, MD, USView Map
1 vacancy - Boston, MA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Detroit, MI, USView Map
1 vacancy - Minneapolis, MN, USView Map
1 vacancy - Saint Paul, MN, USView Map
1 vacancy - Kansas City, MO, USView Map
1 vacancy - Saint Louis, MO, USView Map
1 vacancy - Omaha, NE, USView Map
1 vacancy - Albuquerque, NM, USView Map
1 vacancy - New York - New York, NY, USView Map
1 vacancy - Charlotte, NC, USView Map
1 vacancy - Durham, NC, USView Map
1 vacancy - Raleigh, NC, USView Map
1 vacancy - Cleveland, OH, USView Map
1 vacancy - Columbia, OH, USView Map
1 vacancy - Oklahoma City, OK, USView Map
1 vacancy - Portland, OR, USView Map
1 vacancy - Philadelphia, PA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Pittsburgh, PA, USView Map
1 vacancy - Memphis, TN, USView Map
1 vacancy - Nashville, TN, USView Map
1 vacancy - Austin, TX, USView Map
1 vacancy - Dallas, TX, USView Map
1 vacancy - Fort Worth, TX, USView Map
1 vacancy - Houston, TX, USView Map
1 vacancy - San Antonio, TX, USView Map
1 vacancy - Salt Lake City, UT, USView Map
1 vacancy - Seattle, WA, USView Map

Back to top
Print Preview

Job Announcement Number:


Control Number: