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September 28, 2010
In Reply Refer To:
4000, 1400-361 (220) P
Information Bulletin No. 2010-123
To:                   All Field Officials
                        Attention:  DSDs for Resources
From:               Division Chief, Rangeland Resources
Subject:           On-the-Spot Hiring Program for Entry-level Rangeland Management Specialists and Technicians, Natural Resource Specialists, and Other Identified Job Series                                                                                                                      DD:  12/03/10
This Information Bulletin (IB) serves to inform district offices (DO), field offices (FO), and state offices (SO) of the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) intent to coordinate an On-the-Spot Hiring Program for entry-level Rangeland Management Specialists (0454 series), Natural Resource Specialists (0401), and Rangeland Technicians (0455) at the 64th Society for Range Management (SRM) Annual Meeting and Trade Show in Billings, Montana.  Recruiting for positions within other job series also may be considered, depending on hiring needs identified at the time of the event (February 6–10, 2011).
The Division of Rangeland Resources (WO-220) is working with the Denver Federal Center – BLM National Operations Center (NOC) Human Resource Specialists and Montana State Office Human Resource Specialists to permit the BLM to noncompetitively hire qualified entry-level applicants for permanent positions under the Federal Career Intern Program (FCIP) and the Student Career Experience Program (SCEP), and to make temporary hires under the Student Temporary Employment Program (STEP). 

SRM meetings consistently have provided successful On-the-Spot Hiring opportunities for students and young professionals.  This year Human Resources Specialists will be available in Billings to review and qualify applications, and to initiate the hiring process.  In addition, interested candidates will be able to submit their applications in advance of the meeting using http://www.usajobs.gov/ to streamline the application review and qualification process.  Hiring officials are expected to be onsite in Billings, but may either schedule onsite or phone interviews, and the FOs and SOs are being asked to consider participating in this annual program.  More information is presented in this IB, and is also available at: http://www.rangelands.org/jobfair_rangelandcareers.shtml.

On-the-Spot Hiring Process

Interested candidates will be able to submit their applications online in advance of the meetings using http://www.usajobs.gov/ for a 2 week period in early January 2011. Encouraging this will allow for the majority of applications to be reviewed and individuals deemed qualified in advance of the meetings in February 2011.  This will also allow for hiring officials to conduct phone interviews for qualified applicants who are unable to attend the meeting.
The entire On-the-Spot Hiring process averages 3-4 days from Sunday to Wednesday during the SRM annual meeting.  The BLM will be present at the Rangeland Job Fair and Career Development Workshops on the first Sunday of the meeting to circulate job outreach notices, as well as explain the agency hiring process to interested participants.  Onsite applications will still be accepted at the BLM Job Fair booth where BLM Human Resource Specialists will review and provide qualified resumes to hiring officials for consideration.
For applicants considered to be qualified, 30-minute interviews are typically scheduled from Monday through Wednesday.  Interview panels normally consist of managers, program leads, or specialists who are delegated hiring authority, with one individual representing each job vacancy.  At the completion of the interviews, the intent is to make tentative offers to exceptional candidates for all available positions.  The formal hiring offer for each candidate is contingent on acceptable reference and background checks, which are the responsibility of the local (hiring) office.
Federal Career Intern Program
The FCIP program was created under Executive Order No. 13162 and permits recruitment at regional or national levels. In accordance with 5 CFR, part 302, veterans’ preference must be applied when filling excepted-service positions. Successful candidates are typically offered entry-level positions and may be converted to permanent status after 2 years of acceptable internship. During the internship, work assignments are designed to provide an orientation to the agency and offer progressive on-the-job specialized work experience and training targeted to the full-performance duties of the position. For more information, please visit the following U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) website: www.opm.gov/careerintern.
Additional Hiring Authorities
In addition to the FCIP, current degree-seeking students can be hired at this event through the following authorities:
  • Student Career Experience Program
The SCEP is a non-competitive authority for hiring students currently enrolled in accredited vocational, high school, undergraduate, graduate, doctoral degree, or certificate programs. Upon satisfactorily completing this program, the student can be converted noncompetitively into a career or career-conditional permanent appointment.
  • Student Temporary Employment Program
The STEP authority is the same as the SCEP authority above, except that it does not have the conversion to permanent provision.  Students in this program can be converted to the SCEP authority, noncompetitively at any time. 
For more information on these hiring authorities, please visit:
How to Participate
If you have a vacancy and would like to participate in this event, please email the following information to Linda Coates-Markle, BLM Liaison to the Society for Range Management, Division of Rangeland Resources (WO-220) at lcmarkle@blm.gov:
  • Position title, series, and grade of the vacancy.  Please provide the full performance level of the position in parentheses (e.g., Range Management Specialist, GS-454 5/7/9/(11)).
  • Duty Station, District, and Office.
  • Contact information:  name, email, and phone number of designated hiring official who must be onsite during the event.
  • Position description and signed SF-52.
  • Office and community information (about a one-page description).
  • Any additional incentives that may be offered on an office-by-office basis (e.g., government housing, onsite child care, hiring bonus, Student Loan Repayment program, financial assistance to cover moving expenses). 
This information will be compiled and distributed to about 40 different colleges and universities offering programs in range management and/or science throughout the country.  It will also be posted on the SRM website (see below) and http://www.usajobs.gov/ for up to 2 months in advance of the SRM meeting.  Individual offices are also encouraged to advertise their positions locally during this period.  
For more information about this program, please visit the SRM website at: http://www.rangelands.org/jobfair_rangelandcareers.shtml. For more information about the SRM Annual Meeting, please the website at:  http://www.rangelands.org/billings2011/.
Any office wishing to participate in this program must indicate their intent to do so, and provide the required information by Friday, December 3, 2010.  
Past Program Successes
Several Federal agencies (U.S. Forest Service, Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the BLM) have successfully coordinated On-the-Spot Hiring programs at the SRM annual meetings in past years.  The BLM first participated at the 60th SRM Annual Meeting in Reno, Nevada, and successfully interviewed 24 candidates, filling 9 Rangeland Management Specialist (RMS, 454 series) positions.  Applications were primarily received from graduating seniors representing 15 different universities and colleges. Following the February 2007 meeting, five more applicants were successfully hired by BLM offices from the qualified candidate roster generated during the program. 

During the 61st SRM Annual Meeting in Louisville, Kentucky, 22 applications were received (primarily from graduating seniors representing 15 different universities and colleges).  Eleven qualified applicants were hired in positions, representing 11 different FOs, and 5 different states.  Following the February 2008 meeting, another two applicants were successfully hired by BLM offices from the qualified candidate roster generated during the program.

The BLM held its third On-the-Spot Hiring program in conjunction with the 62nd SRM Annual Meeting and Trade Show in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  That year the response was very strong with more than 70 qualified applications being received, including several highly skilled veterans and minority candidates.  All 18 FCIP vacancies offered were successfully filled, including 10 Rangeland Management Specialist (0454 series) positions, from 10 different FOs, representing 5 states. Other positions offered and filled included two Wildlife Biologist (0486 series) positions, one Natural Resource Specialist (0401 series) position, and two Range Technician (0455 series) positions.  That was the first year that SCEP vacancies were offered and all three positions were successfully filled.  Following these meetings, another eight candidates were selected from the candidate roster for additional FCIP positions. 

Last year, during the 63rd SRM Annual meeting and Trade Show in Denver, Colorado, a new approach was to use USAJOBS.gov as a vehicle to announce the vacancies and receive applications in advance of the meetings.  As a result, the response was phenomenal with more than 1,800 applications received, including several highly skilled veterans and minority candidates. An additional 40 applications were received during the Rangeland JOBFAIR. Ultimately, 120 candidates were selected to be interviewed, either by phone or onsite. At the conclusion of the program, FCIP vacancies successfully filled included six Rangeland Management Specialist (RMS 454 series) positions, from six different field offices, representing four states. In addition, one Wildlife Biologist 486 series position, three Natural Resource Specialist 401 series positions, and one Botanist 430 series position were successfully filled.  This was also the second year that a SCEP vacancy was offered and successfully filled. After the meetings, an impressive roster of 88 candidates was shared with BLM offices for further consideration for upcoming positions.
Signed by:                                                       Authenticated by:
Robert D. Roudabush                                      Robert M. Williams
Division Chief                                                   Division of IRM Governance,WO-560
Rangeland Resources

Last updated: 10-01-2010