Civil Engineer (Geotechnical)

Ashburn, Virginia
Jul 05, 2022
Jul 13, 2022
Engineer, IT, QA Engineer
Full Time

At the full performance level, the Civil Engineer (Geotechnical) will:
  • Provide sound geotechnical engineering recommendations and assistance.
  • Serve as technical specialist in the fields of geotechnical engineering including geology, subsurface investigations, foundation engineering, slope stability, land and rock slide remediation, ground improvement, and other geotechnical-related aspects.
  • Manage multiple geotechnical projects simultaneously, delivering on time and within budget. Act as Contracting Officer's Technical Representative (COTR) on technical contracts for engineering services.
  • Plan, coordinate, supervise, and participate in geotechnical investigations. Be familiar with geotechnical programs and software.
  • Prepare detailed and comprehensive geotechnical reports and memoranda that includes, among other things, subsurface conditions and geotechnical evaluation and recommendations.
  • Communicate in person and in writing within a team environment and with co-workers, employees of partner agencies, consultants, and personnel from other interested parties.
  • Provide on-the-job training to new employees, cooperative education students, highway engineer trainees, and other developmental employees as assigned.

The ideal candidate for this position has experience in the fields of geotechnical engineering including slope stability/landslide analysis and repair and retaining walls design and is interested in a career where they have the opportunity to plan, coordinate, supervise, and participate in geotechnical studies for roadways and structures with the responsibility to manage projects' schedule and budget.


Conditions of Employment

  • You must be a U.S. citizen & meet specialized experience to qualify
  • Submit application and resume online by 11:59 PM EST on the closing date
  • Required documents must be submitted by the closing date.
  • Direct Hire Authority will be used to fill this position

  • SELECTIVE SERVICE: Males born after 12/31/1959 must be registered for the Selective Service.
  • GOVERNMENT TRAVEL CARD: This position involves travel. A government contractor-issued travel card will be issued and must be retained for official business only.
  • PROBATIONARY PERIOD: Applicants may be required to successfully complete a one-year probationary period (unless already completed).
  • BACKGROUND INVESTIGATION: You will be required to complete a background/security investigation and meet preliminary requirements prior to onboarding.
  • TELEWORK ELIGIBILITY: This position is approved for occasional telework. The number of telework days approved is determined by the agency policy, emergency situations, the approval of your immediate supervisor, and if applicable, approval of additional officials. You are required to report to the office on a regular basis since this is not a full-time telework position or approved as a remote work position.


To meet the minimum qualifications for this position, you must (1) meet the Mandatory Education Requirement for the series, (2) provide a copy of your transcripts or other applicable documentation for verification, AND (3) meet the specialized experience requirements for each grade. Please review the following information before proceeding with the application process:

(1) Review the Education Requirements section.

(2) Upload the appropriate document(s) to your application for verification purposes. (Refer to 'Required Documents' section for additional guidance)

Students enrolled in a qualifying degree program can apply if the anticipated graduation date is within six months of the closing date of this announcement. If selected, the final transcript must be received before your start date. Other applicants must meet all qualification requirements by the closing date of this announcement.

(3) Specialized Experience:

To determine which grade(s) you are eligible for, review the following grade specific details. You will be asked questions as part of your application but make sure to verify how you meet this experience in your resume or you may be deemed ineligible.

For the GS-11:

On Experience, you must have at least one year of experience, equal or equivalent to the GS-09 grade level, which included:
  • Experience in various geotechnical aspects of transportation projects including the coordination of subsurface investigations, geotechnical design analysis, and preparation of geotechnical memos and reports; AND
  • Experience providing recommendations for foundations, slope stability, and retaining walls systems to include cost considerations and constructability.

Or on Education, you must have 3 years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a Ph.D. degree OR Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree.

You can also have a combination of graduate education and experience. This must be fully supported by your resume and transcripts, provided with your application.

For the GS-12:

On Experience, you must have at least one year of experience, equal or equivalent to the GS-11 grade level, which included:
  • Experience in all geotechnical aspects of transportation projects which include the coordination of subsurface investigations, performance of geotechnical design analysis, and preparation of geotechnical memos and reports; AND
  • Experience in determining foundations, slope stability, and retaining walls systems to include cost considerations and constructability while also determining the best approach to carry out to completion.

You cannot substitute education at this level, you must have experience.

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES (KSAs): Your qualifications will be evaluated on the basis of your level of knowledge, skills, abilities and/or competencies in the following areas:
  • Geotechnical Engineering - Knowledge of the concepts, principles, theories, and methods related to the investigation and evaluation of subsurface soil or geologic conditions and properties for the purpose of designing stable foundation systems, earthen structures, or the remediation of subsurface conditions.
  • Oral Communications - Makes clear and convincing oral presentations. Listens effectively; clarifies information as needed.
  • Written Communications - Writes in a clear, concise, organized, and convincing manner for the intended audience.

  • For all types of consideration, 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.


    All applicants must meet the education requirements under A or B to qualify for applying to an engineering position:

    A. Successful completion of a degree in engineering that: (1) has at least one program accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET); or (2) that included differential and integral calculus and courses (more advanced that first year physics and chemistry) in five of the following seven areas of engineering science or physics: (a) statics, dynamics; (b) strength of materials; (c) fluid mechanics, hydraulics; (d) thermodynamics; (e) electrical fields and circuits; (f) nature and properties of materials; and (g) any other comparable area of fundamental engineering science or physics, such as optics, heat transfer, soil mechanics, or electronics;


    B. Combination of education or training: college level education, training and/or technical experience that has furnished (1) a thorough knowledge of the physical and mathematical sciences underlying 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 or licensure - current registration as an Engineer Intern (EI), engineer in Training (EIT), or licensure as a Professional Engineer (PE).
  • Written Test - Evidence of having successfully passed the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) examination, or any other written test required for professional registration by an engineering licensure board in the various States, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico.
  • Specified academic courses - Successful completion of at least 60 semester hours of courses in the physical, mathematical, and engineering sciences which included the courses as specified in Paragraph A above.
  • Related curriculum - Successful completion of a curriculum leading to a bachelor's degree in an appropriate scientific field, e.g., engineering technology, physics, chemistry, architecture, computer science, mathematics, hydrology, or geology, may be accepted in lieu of a bachelor's degree in engineering, provided the applicant had at least 1 year of professional engineering experience acquired under professional engineering supervision and guidance. There should be either an established plan of intensive training to develop professional engineering competence, or several years of prior professional engineering type experience. This must be clearly described in your resume.

  • For additional information, please refer to the OPM qualifications standard for GS-800: All Professional Engineering Positions qualifications at:

    Additional information

    This announcement will be open continuously for 3 months. Given our continuing need for professionals in this field, we will possibly review applications and refer candidates for potential interviews multiple times during the open period of the announcement.

    PLEASE NOTE: This is not a Bargaining unit position.

    COVID VACCINATION: If selected, you will be required to provide information regarding your COVID-19 vaccination status for the purposes of implementing workplace safety protocols, such as protocols related to masking, physical distancing, testing, travel, and quarantine.

    This announcement may be used to fill additional positions if similar vacancies occur within 90 days of the issue date of the referral certificate.

    Qualified CTAP/ICTAP candidates receive priority and will referred to the hiring manager.