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Job Details

Public Affairs Specialist

Company name
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs - Agency Wide

$81,077.00 to $105,400.00

Bedford, MA

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Open & closing dates

Opening and closing dates





$81,077 to $105,400 per year

Pay scale & grade

GS 12

Work schedule


Appointment type



1 vacancy in the following location:

Bedford, MA

Bedford, MA

Relocation expenses reimbursed


This job is open to

The public

U.S. citizens, nationals or those who owe allegiance to the U.S.


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This position is located at the Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital in Bedford, MA. The primary purpose of this position is to increase internal and external awareness of hospital programs, services, specials events and projects, technologies, personnel, and research accomplishments.

Work Schedule: Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 4:00 pm

Recruitment & Relocation Incentives: Not authorized

Financial Disclosure Report: Not Required

Learn more about this agency


Provides leadership and direction for the Public Affairs program, while displaying tact, common sense, diplomacy, initiative, and solid professional judgment

Establishes and maintains proactive contacts with media outlets, legislative offices, veteran service organizations, and health care affiliates

Actively pitches and places stories with media outlets

Advises senior level management on development of media campaigns and communication plans and strategies

Plans, develops, and produces a variety of materials and publications including print, visual, Web-based, multimedia, and video materials to convey information about the VA to a variety of stakeholders

Serves as content manager of the medical center's Internet and Intranet

Evaluates information from a variety of sources and provides feedback to senior management on public affairs trends and stakeholder attitudes to assess program effectiveness and make improvements

Organizes editorial boards for senior leaders to positively and proactively promote the medical center's mission

Serves as agency spokesman for the facility, including responding in writing and orally to questions about or criticisms of the agency's activities or policies and explaining the VA point of view

Handles communication efforts when controversial, high level issues impact the medical center, often during crisis and emergency situations

Serves as Public Information Officer under Hospital Incident Command System

Plans and executes special events, coordinates high profile visits, and supports outreach to veterans not enrolled in the VA health care system

Develops budgets, writes statements of work, and directs, coordinates, and supervises activities of supporting staff and contractors

Performs other related duties as assigned

Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status


Job family (Series)

1035 Public Affairs



Conditions of Employment

Must be a U.S. citizen

Subject to a background/security investigation

Designated and/or random drug testing may be required

Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959

May be required to serve a probationary period.


TO QUALIFY FOR THIS POSITION AT THE GS-12 LEVEL, YOU MUST MEET THE FOLLOWING: One (1) full year of specialized experience that equipped you with the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties of this position, and that is typically in or related to the work of a Public Affairs Specialist. To be creditable, specialized experience must have been equivalent to at least the GS-11 level of Federal service. Specialized experience is experience where you were responsible for applying advanced communication and analytical practices, methods and techniques to the solution of complex public affairs problems; planning, developing, and producing a variety of materials and publications (including print, visual, Web-based, multimedia, and video materials) to achieve understanding of various points of view or concepts from those in the public with varying levels of understanding and different interests and perspectives on the subjects; establishing and maintaining effective working relationships with local media representatives and community groups; presenting information to individuals, and large and small groups; and gathering and evaluating information for communication to media. Note: Your experience must be detailed in your resume to receive full credit.

You will be rated on the following Competencies as part of the assessment questionnaire for this position:


Communications and Media

Organizational Stewardship


IMPORTANT: A full year of work is considered to be 35-40 hours of work per week. All experience listed on your resume must include the month and year start/end dates. Part-time experience will be credited on the basis of time actually spent in appropriate activities. Applicants wishing to receive credit for such experience must indicate clearly the nature of their duties and responsibilities in each position and the number of hours a week spent in such employment.

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.

For more information on these qualification standards, please visit the United States Office of Personnel Management's website at


There is no educational substitution at this grade level.

Additional information

Physical Requirements: Assignments regularly involve extended periods of waking, standing, bending, and stooping to execute logistics for special events or to accompany media crews or other special groups. Regularly picks up loads of 15 pounds, such as boxes of newspapers or other literature, and to push carts of supplies.

Selected applicants may be required to complete an online onboarding process.

Receiving Service Credit for Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave: Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employee's credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave. Such credit must be requested and approved prior to the appointment date and is not guaranteed.

Special Employment Consideration: VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply, including those eligible for hiring under 5 CFR 213.3102(u), Schedule A, Appointment of persons with disabilities (i.e., intellectual disabilities, severe physical disabilities, or psychiatric disabilities), and/or disabled veterans with a compensable service-connected disability of 30% or more. For more information on how to apply using this appointment authority via the Selective Placement Coordinator within the office, contact the facility Human Resources Department at (781) 687-2000.

It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.

Veterans and Transitioning Service Members: Please visit the VA for Vets

site for career-search tools for Veterans seeking employment at VA, career development services for our existing Veterans, and coaching and reintegration support for military service members.

The Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP) and Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP) provide eligible displaced Federal competitive service employees with selection priority over other candidates for competitive service vacancies. To be qualified you must submit appropriate documentation and be found well-qualified (have a final rating of 85 or more before any Veterans preference points) for this vacancy. Information about ICTAP and CTAP eligibility is on OPM's Career Transition Resources website at

This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.

If you are unable to apply online view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE WILL NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE. If your resume does not support your questionnaire answers, we will not allow credit for your response(s).

Your responses to the assessment questionnaire will be reviewed along with the information provided in your resume and supporting documentation to determine if you are qualified for the position. If, after reviewing your resume and/or supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have inflated your qualifications and or experience, your rating may be lowered and/or you may lose consideration for this position. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your eligibility.

Candidates who apply under All U.S. Citizens announcements will be rated and ranked using Category Rating procedures. Qualified candidates will be assigned to a quality category. The categories are defined as follows:

Best qualified - applicants possessing experience that substantially exceeds the minimum qualifications of the position including all selective factors, and who are highly proficient in all requirements of the job and can perform effectively in the position;

Highly qualified - applicants possessing experience that exceeds the minimum qualifications of the position including all selective factors, and who are proficient in most of the requirements of the job;

Well qualified - applicants possessing experience that meets the minimum qualifications of the position including all selective factors, and who are proficient in some, but not all, of the requirements of the job; and

Qualified - applicants possessing experience and/or education that meets the minimum qualifications of the position including all selective factors.

Application of Veterans' Preference: Category rating and selection procedures place those with veteran's preference above non-preference eligibles within each category. Preference eligible applicants that meet the eligibility and qualification requirements and who have a compensable service-connected disability of at least 10 percent are listed in the highest quality category (except when the position being filled is scientific or professional at the GS-09 grade level or higher).

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance


Required Documents

Required Documents

IMPORTANT: Please ensure your resume include up-to-date contact information (phone number(s), email address(s), etc.)

To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:


The following documents are accepted, and may be required if applicable to your eligibility and/or qualifications for this position. Please use this checklist

to ensure you have included all documents required for your application, such as a copy of your transcript (if using education to qualify), SF-50's (current/former Federal employees), documentation to support Veterans Preference or ICTAP/CTAP documentation (for displaced Federal employees).

Cover Letter




Other Veterans Document





Veterans' Preference: When applying for Federal Jobs, eligible Veterans should claim preference for 5pt (TP), 10pt (CP/CPS/XP), or for Sole Survivor Preference (SSP) in the questionnaire. You must provide a legible copy of your DD214(s) which shows dates and character of service (honorable, general, etc.). If you are currently serving on active duty and expect to be released or discharged within 120 days you must submit documentation related to your active duty service which reflects the dates of service, character of service (honorable, general, etc.), and dates of impending separation. Additionally, disabled veterans and others eligible for 10-point preference (such as widows or mothers of eligible Veterans) must also submit an SF-15 Application for 10 Point Veteran Preference with required proof as stated on the form. Documentation is required to award preference. For more information on Veterans' Preference, please visit

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.



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. Learn more about federal benefits

Review our benefits

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

How to Apply

All applicants are encouraged to apply online. To apply for this position, you must complete the questionnaire and submit the documentation specified in the Required Documents section below. The complete application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (ET) on 03/19/2018 to receive consideration. To preview the questionnaire click

To begin, click Apply Online to create a USA JOBS account or log in to your existing account. Follow the prompts to select your USA JOBS resume and/or other supporting documents and complete the occupational questionnaire.

Click Submit My Answers to submit your application package.NOTE: It is your responsibility to ensure your responses and appropriate documentation is submitted prior to the closing date.

To verify your application is complete, log into your USAJobs account,

, select the Application Status link and then select the more information link for this position. The Application page will display the status of your application, the documentation received and processed, and any correspondence the agency has sent related to this application. Your uploaded documents may take several hours to clear the virus scan process. To return to an incomplete application, log into your USA JOBS account and click Update Application in the vacancy announcement. You must re-select your resume and/or other documents from your USA JOBS account or your application will be incomplete.

Agency contact information

VHA Nationwide Recruitment VHA Nationwide Recruitment






Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital

200 Springs Road

Bedford, MA


Learn more about this agency

Next steps

Once your online application is submitted you will receive a confirmation notification by email. After the vacancy announcement closes, we will review applications per Category Rating procedures to ensure qualification and eligibility requirements are met. After the review is complete, a referral certificate(s) is issued and applicants will be notified of their status by email. Referred applicants will be notified as such and may be contacted directly by the hiring office for an interview. All referred applicants receive a final notification once a selection decision has been made.

You may check the status of your application at any time by logging into your USA Jobs account and clicking on Applications. Information regarding your application status can be found in the USAJobs Help Center

Fair & Transparent

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.

Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) for federal employees & job applicants

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 and hiring process 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.

Learn more about disability employment and reasonable accommodations

or how to contact an agency.

Legal and regulatory guidance

Financial suitability

Social security number request

Privacy Act

Signature and false statements

Selective Service

New employee probationary period

Note: We cannot accept applications on behalf of Federal Agencies. Application instructions are listed within the Job Description.

Company info

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs - Agency Wide
Website :

Company Profile
The Veterans Health Administration is home to the United States’ largest integrated health care system consisting of 152 medical centers, nearly 1,400 community-based outpatient clinics, community living centers, Vet Centers and Domiciliaries. Together these health care facilities and the more than 53,000 independent licensed health care practitioners who work within them provide comprehensive care to more than 8.3 million* Veterans each year.

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