Letter to the editor
I would like to respond to a Sept. 18 letter to the editor, "Improve USA Jobs." The writer suggests that adding a "keyword search" to
USA Jobs -- the government's one-stop shop for federal employment -- would
make it easier to attract young people into public service and match them
(especially information technology specialists) to appropriate jobs.
Many government IT positions require more than just IT skills. For example,
a computer scientist may coordinate numerous projects, provide technical
guidance and negotiate work agreements in addition to using technical skills
needed as a software engineer. The government's Web designers, applications
systems developers, data security specialists and local-area network administrators
also must have skills in communications, contracting and software analysis.
Limiting a job search to specific software applications could cause an IT
specialist to miss out on professional growth opportunities. In short, we
want to give job seekers maximum flexibility and choice.
During the past year, the USA Jobs Web site (www.usajobs.opm.gov) has
undergone significant change. The site's look and feel have been modernized;
vacancy announcements are just now beginning to use more clear and concise
language; and information about government employment is easier to locate.
Features requested by job seekers have been added; answers to additional
employment questions are available; and job-search results are being expanded.
But this is just a start. Each aspect of the site continues to be reviewed
for further improvement. For instance, the applications process has been
automated, often letting applicants submit their resumes or other forms
online at USA Jobs or by linking to an agency site.
We have seen tremendous growth in our Web site these past few years.
We advertise more than 17,000 jobs per month; we have exceeded 20 million
unique visitors in fiscal 2001; our new USA Jobs by E-mail service has almost
130,000 users; and more than 155,000 resumes are in our database. Recent
data indicates that 92 percent of users are highly satisfied with their
USA Jobs experience.
We are proud of our Web site and the services it offers. Not only do
we strive to improve services for job seekers, we also are working diligently
to make USA Jobs a stellar recruiting tool for federal agencies.
Acting associate director for employment
Office of Personnel Management