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

Job Title:Administrative Specialist

Department:Department Of Agriculture

Agency:Farm Service Agency

Job Announcement Number:UK1041504-SC-DD

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

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.


$47,923.00 to $75,376.00 / Per Year


Monday, February 03, 2014 to Friday, February 07, 2014




Full Time - Permanent




1 vacancy in the following location:
Columbia, SC View Map


See Area of Consideration Statement Below


Not Applicable






The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is an exciting and rewarding place to start, build and/or continue your career. Be part of our team and support the well-being of American agriculture and the American public. 

FSA's diverse culture and benefits allow for a healthy balance between your career and home life. In addition to a generous salary, FSA offers a friendly and professional working environment with a diverse workforce, flexible hours/work schedules, and other family-friendly benefits such as: paid vacation and sick leave, paid holidays, retirement and supplemental savings plan, a wide array of health, dental, vision, and life insurance plans, flexible spending accounts, and long-term care insurance.



FARM SERVICE AGENCY (FSA) COUNTY EMPLOYEES:  Permanent County employees without prior Federal tenure who are selected for a Civil Service position under Public Law 105-277 will be given a career-conditional appointment and must serve a 1-year probationary period.


  • Occasional Travel
  • Travel required as noted above.


  • No


  • You must be a U.S. Citizen or National to apply.
  • Required to pass a background investigation and fingerprint check.
  • Meet education and/or experience requirements.
  • Complete occupational questionnaire and submit resume/supporting documents.


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This position is assigned to the FSA SOUTH CAROLINA STATE OFFICE, Administrative Branch, located in Columbia, Richland County, South Carolina.


The selectee:


  • Provides guidance and staff assistance to supervisors and employees on all human resource issues and for planning, administering and evaluating the state's program for employee development.
  • Provides technical support in monitoring the administration of the human resources management program for Federal and County office employees throughout the State.
  • Provides expert guidance on employee benefits, retirement, TSP, and health/life benefits.
  • Provides advice and assistance in other areas of Human Resources administration to include employee relations, employment, and classification.
  • Provides guidance and staff assistance to supervisor and assisting the Administrative Officer in planning, coordinating, and monitoring a variety of administrative management services provided to the State Office and County Offices.  The selectee is a key member of the Administrative Staff.
  • Provides FSA program information and guidance, participates with management, key staff member planning and implementation.


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Applicants must meet all qualification requirements by Friday, February 07, 2014.


You may start at the GS-9 level if you have the following qualifications:


  • Two full academic years of progressively higher level graduate education or master's, or equivalent graduate degree from an accredited college or university with a major in social or behavioral sciences or in such fields as business or public administration, industrial management, psychology, labor relations, education; OR
  • One full-time year (12 months) of administrative experience equivalent in difficulty and responsibility to the GS-7 level in the Federal service.  Experience that demonstrates a fundamental knowledge in administrative specialties such as management analysis, personnel management, and processing personnel actions; OR
  • A combination of education and experience as listed above.

You may start at the GS-11 level if you have the following qualifications:


  • Three full academic years of progressively higher level graduate education or master's, or equivalent graduate degree from an accredited college or university with a major in social or behavioral sciences or in such fields as business or public administration, industrial management, psychology, labor relations, education; OR
  • One full-time year (12 months) of administrative experience equivalent in difficulty and responsibility to the GS-9 level in the Federal service.  Experience that demonstrates a comprehensive knowledge in administrative specialties such as management analysis, personnel management, and processing personnel actions; OR
  • A combination of education and experience as listed above.

College Transcript:  If you are qualifying based on education, submit a copy of your college transcript that lists college courses detailing each course by the number and department (i.e., bio 101, math 210, etc.), course title, number of credit hours and grade earned. You must submit evidence that any education completed in a foreign institution is equivalent to U.S. education standards with your resume.   You may submit an unofficial copy of the transcript at the initial phase of the application process.   Please refer to the "How to Apply, Alternative Methods for Submitting Your Application Materials" section, for instructions on submitting the transcript, if applicable.

Note: Your college transcript is used to verify successful completion of degree, or college course work.  An official college transcript will be required before you can report to duty.

TIME-IN-GRADE REQUIREMENTS:  Applicants who have held a General Schedule (GS) position within the last 52 weeks must meet the time-in-grade restriction.

BACKGROUND INVESTIGATION AND FINGERPRINT CHECK: Selection and retention in this position is contingent on a successfully adjudicated FBI National Criminal History Check (fingerprint check) and a background investigation.



Applications and required documentation (see below) will be reviewed to determine if applicants meet eligibility and job requirements.  Qualified applicants will then be rated on the quality of experience, education, and training they possess relevant to the duties of the position and the extent applicants possess the following knowledge, skills, and abilities (or competencies):


  • Human resources administration.
  • Experience administering the County office payroll/personnel system.
  • Experience administering the federal benefits retirement program.
  • Experience using EmpowHR to process County and Federal personnel actions.
  • Coordination of eOPF activities.
  • Self-management and independent work orientation.
  • Analysis and problem solving.
  • Ability to communicate orally.
  • Ability to communicate in writing.
  • Customer service.


We will review your application, including the online Occupational Questionnaire, to ensure you meet the job requirements and assess your ability to perform this job.  Before any certificate can be issued to the selecting official, the resume and supporting documents are reviewed by an HR Specialist to ensure that (a) minimum qualification requirements are met and (b) the resume supports the answers provided to the job-specific questions.  Your ratings in this Occupational Questionnaire are subject to evaluation and verification based on the documents and references you submit.  Be sure your resume clearly supports your responses to all the questions addressing experience and education relevant to this position.  If a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is supported by your description of experience and/or education OR that your application is incomplete, it may result in receipt of a lower or ineligible rating.  Errors, omissions, or providing inaccurate information on federal documents may affect your eligibility.  If selected, providing inaccurate information on federal documents could also be grounds for dismissing you from the position/agency.  Please follow all instructions carefully.



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Permanent employees are eligible to elect life and health insurance coverage and will be covered by a Retirement System. Employees will earn annual and sick leave. For additional information on benefits click here


DIRECT DEPOSIT:  All federal employees are required by P.L. 104-134 to have federal payments made  by direct deposit.  click here.


Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP) or Career Transition Assistance Plan(CTAP): If you are claiming CTAP/ICTAP eligibility, provide a copy of your most recent annual performance appraisal (at least "fully successful" or equivalent), and proof of eligibility, i.e., a RIF separation notice or Certification of Expected Separation, and SF-50 noting current position, grade level, and duty location. CTAP/ICTAP eligibles will be considered well-qualified if achieving a rating of 80 or above excluding veteran's preference points.

Selective Service: If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law. See for more information.


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Please read all the instructions before you begin. 

To apply for this position, you must submit a complete Application Package, which includes the following:

1. Resume. You may either use USAJOBS Resume Builder to create a resume or create your own; however, your resume must contain the following information: 1) job information for which you are applying; 2) personal information; 3) education; 4) work experience; and, 5) other qualifications.
2. A complete Occupational Questionnaire
3. Other Required Documents if applicable (i.e., college transcripts, Veterans documents, etc).

To begin this process, click the "Apply Online" button to create an account or log into your existing USAJOBS account. Follow the prompts to complete the Occupational Questionnaire. Please ensure that you click the "Submit My Answers" button at the end of the process.

Please print your "Confirmation of your Submission to Application Manager" for your records. The online Occupational Questionnaire must be completed and submitted by 11:59 p.m. EDT on 
Friday, February 07, 2014.  Applications are not screened for required documents before determining minimum qualifications. It is your responsibility to ensure that all required documents are received in the office by the close of business on or before the closing date of this announcement. Our office cannot be responsible for incompatible software, illegible fax transmissions, delays in the mail service etc.

Alternative Method for Submitting Your Application Materials:

If you are not applying online, you may fax your application materials to 1-478-757-3144.

Click View Occupational Questionnaire to download the questions, and
Click OPM Form 1203FX if submitting questionnaire responses by fax, and
CLICK REQUIRED Fax Cover Page to submit any documents by fax.

If applying online or faxing your application materials poses a hardship, please contact the servicing human resources office during core business hours (8:00 am to 4:30 pm Central Time) prior to the application deadline.  Requests for hardship will be reviewed on a case by case basis.  Make requests in a timely manner to allow enough time to obtain documents and return the completed information to our office.


In addition to your Occupational Questionnaire and resume, other documents may be required. 

1. If this vacancy announcement has a basic education requirement and/or you are substituting education for specialized experience, you must submit a copy of your college transcripts.  

2. If you are a current or former Federal employee, you must provide the most current Notification of Personnel Action (Form SF-50) that verifies career-conditional/career status, position title; series and grade (do not submit an Award SF-50). FSA County employees must provide the most recent Notification of Personnel Action (Form SF-50-B or FSA-50) that verifies permanent status. Also provide the SF-50 that reflects the highest grade level held on a permanent basis or the full performance level of your current position, whichever is higher. Failure to do so will result in an ineligible rating.

3. If you are a current Federal employee, you must submit your most recently completed annual performance appraisal (dated within 18 months) which identifies the employee's official rating of record, signed by the supervisor, or a statement advising why the performance appraisal is unavailable. Do not submit a performance plan. Failure to do so will result in an ineligible rating.


Melissa Mahone
Phone: (816)926-1712
Agency Information:
Farm Service Agency
Beacon Facility - Mail Stop 8398
PO Box 419205
9240 Troost Ave KCMO 64131-3055
Kansas City, MO


Once your online Occupational Questionnaire and resume has been received, you will receive an acknowledgement email that your submission was successful. After a qualification review of your complete application package has been made, you will be notified as to the status of your application. If further evaluation or interviews are required, you will be contacted. You can track the progress of your application package in Application Manager at

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