Research Specialist

Arlington, Virginia
Jun 15, 2019
Jun 22, 2019
Analyst, Research
Full Time


Do you love research and are you a good writer? We are seeking a highly qualified applicant to be a Research Specialist in the Research and Analytics group in Arlington, VA. This group studies strategic issues facing the USPS by conducting quantitative and qualitative analysis to identify opportunities to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of USPS products and services. You can view white papers at . Look for "RARC" in the report name.
Learn more about this agency


The successful candidate will serve as an expert technical authority responsible for analysis of strategic postal issues. Responsibilities involve writing white papers on complicated and inter-related programs, systems, functions, policies and numerous other issues affecting the efficiency and effectiveness of USPS products and services. The position requires excellent research, analysis and critical thinking skills, and the ability to write reports in clear, compelling, and accessible language. Mastery of a wide range of qualitative and/or quantitative assessment methods is preferred.

Candidates will be evaluated on the skills they possess that are directly related to the duties of the position and/or the experience and education that demonstrate the applicant's ability to acquire the particular knowledge and skills needed to perform the duties of the position. Only those candidates who meet all qualifications and eligibility requirements and who submit the required information by 11:59 PM EDST on 06/27/2019 will be considered.

The USPS OIG uses a Pay Banding system, which is equivalent to the Federal GS scale. Grade and salary determinations will be made based upon a candidate's education and professional experience. This position is being advertised at the Specialist level, equivalent to a GS-14. The salary range for this position is listed above.

Relocation expenses will not be paid. Pay is only part of the compensation you will earn working for the USPS OIG. We offer a broad array of benefits programs. For further information, please refer to our website at: .

Please note that the duties and responsibilities associated with this position may vary based upon the agency's needs at the time of hire. The following description of major duties and responsibilities is only intended to give applicants a general overview of the expectations.

- Conduct primary and secondary research, complete data analysis, and write compelling, publicly accessible summaries of strategic issues, findings, and implications.

- Analyze postal products, services, business strategies and operational issues, research innovative solutions to existing and potential future issues and challenges, and develop practical suggestions for improvement.

- Apply qualitative and quantitative research methods to develop white papers or other written materials related to financial, economic, business, international, technology, operational, stakeholder, and customer policy issues.

- Work with external research consultants: participate in the preparation of statements of work, selection process, and monitoring of their work to ensure quality of deliverables and compliance with objectives and timetables.

- Prepare and organize public events such as workshops and roundtables to share findings and gain insights on specific research topics.

- Attend/present at conferences and other public events, and network with individual experts and institutions involved in the team's research topics.

Travel Required

25% or less - You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Must be able to pass a drug screening
  • Must be able to pass and maintain a Moderate background investigation (Tier 2)
  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a government-issued credit card
  • May be required to successfully complete a 12-month probationary period



You must meet ALL of the minimum qualifications listed below.
  • Bachelor's Degree from an accredited college or university

  • Five years of related professional experience in research and analysis dealing with business, public policy, regulatory, or postal-related issues.
  • An advanced degree or advanced studies in public policy, economics, business, law, or any other related discipline.
  • Previous professional experience with writing reports or research papers for a nontechnical audience and demonstrated ability to concisely communicate complicated issues.
  • Strong writing skills and experience in drafting and editing a variety of written products such as white papers, short reports, and brief summaries.
  • Proven ability to communicate your work visually.
  • Previous experience developing or executing research methodologies.
  • Experience with creating and delivering presentations.
  • An interest in or experience with Postal Service business and operations, or regulated industries, at the domestic or international level.
  • Ability to work both autonomously and collaboratively in a fast-paced, high-profile environment.
  • Intellectual curiosity and experience in imagining strategic solutions to complex problems.
  • Interest in innovation and new technologies.
  • Detail oriented and ability to meet tight deadlines.
  • Ability to communicate, interact, network, and collaborate with a variety of industry stakeholders.

You must have the experience, knowledge and skills as listed in EACH of the evaluation factors. Failure to demonstrate that you meet all of the evaluation factor requirements as listed below will result in a score of zero (0); an ineligible status, and you will not be referred for further consideration. Include your major accomplishments relevant to the position requirements in your resume.
  • Knowledge of public policy, business, or postal-regulatory issues.
  • Ability to conduct research and analysis, and use that information to prepare high-quality analytical reports, white papers, and other written materials.
  • Quantitative and/or qualitative analytical skills for the purpose of determining systemic or procedural problems and developing findings as well as suggesting solutions.
  • Ability to express and present ideas clearly and concisely, both in writing and orally.

  • Please include in your resume how you meet each evaluation factor.

    Failure to demonstrate that you meet all evaluation factor requirements will result in a score of zero (0). Upon receipt of a zero score, you will be deemed "not minimally qualified," and you will not be referred for further consideration.


    Education must be accredited by an institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Applicants can verify accreditation here: Special Instructions for Candidates with Foreign Education: Education completed outside the United States must be deemed equivalent to that gained in U.S. education programs. You must submit all necessary documents to a private U.S. credential evaluation service to interpret equivalency of your education against courses given in U.S. accredited colleges and universities. For further information visit:

    Additional information

    Pay is only part of the compensation you will earn working for the USPS OIG. We offer a broad array of benefits programs:
    Health, Dental, Vision, Life and Long Term Care Insurances with Flexible Spending options.
    For more information about these programs visit

    Retirement and Thrift Savings. For more information about these programs see and

    Flexible Work Schedules. USPS OIG offers a range of family friendly flexibilities including flexible work schedules, telework and employee assistance programs.

    Leave and Holidays. In addition to 10 paid holidays each year, you will earn 13 days of paid sick leave and 13 to 26 paid vacation days each year depending on your years of service.

    For further information, please refer to our website at:

    Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) Status: Exempt (Nonexempt employees are entitled to overtime pay; Exempt employees are not).

    This agency provides Reasonable Accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you require accommodations for any part of the application and/or hiring process, please send an email to The decision on granting an accommodation request will be made on a case by case basis.

    How You Will Be Evaluated

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

    The Human Resources Office will review your resume and supporting documentation to ensure that you meet the minimum qualifications required for this position. You will no longer be considered for this position if you: receive a zero (0) rating on any evaluation factor; fail to attach all required documentation; if your application materials indicate that you are not minimally-qualified for this position; or if you fail to qualify on the interview. Only the top-rated candidates will be referred to a review official or the selecting official for further consideration. Top-rated applicants may be required to participate in an interview. Your rating may be further adjusted or rated as ineligible by the review official or the selecting official based on your interview performance. Once all applicant scores are finalized, the selecting official will make a final decision. NOTE: If you receive a zero (0) rating on any evaluation factor or on the interview, you will be considered NOT MINIMALLY QUALIFIED for the position and rated ineligible.

    Background checks and security clearance

    Security clearance
    Not Required

    Drug test required

    Required Documents

    You must submit all required documents by 11:59 PM EST on the closing date of this announcement,06/27/2019.

    1. RESUME. When completing your online application or uploading your resume, you must categorize it as a "Resume" document). IMPORTANT: You will be asked questions in the self-assessment questionnaire. It is essential that your resume and supporting documentation provide sufficient information to substantiate your responses to the self-assessment questionnaire.

    2. WRITING SAMPLE. Upload at least one writing sample that demonstrates the ability to conduct research and analysis, and uses that information to prepare high-quality written deliverables.

    3. COVER LETTER. Upload a separate statement of no more than two pages showing how your skills, experience, education, and/or training address the evaluation factors for this vacancy.

    4. TRANSCRIPTS from an accredited college or university. The information presented in the transcript must be verifiable and should contain the name of the institution, applicant's name, list of completed courses, semester hours, GPA, date and type of Bachelor's Degree issued. Education completed outside the United States must be deemed equivalent to that gained in conventional/accredited U.S. education programs to be acceptable for Federal employment. Attach document verifying that it has been deemed equivalent. For further information visit: . (Required: Upload and save as "Transcript" document.)

    5. PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL dated within the last 15 months. This is required from all applicants including Federal, USPS, OIG, and private sector employees. If a PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL is not available, you must submit a separate statement with the reason a performance appraisal is not available. (Required: Upload and save as "Other" document.) NOTE: An SF50 IS NOT acceptable as a performance appraisal.


    7. UPLOAD SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS which may include:
      Certificates or Licenses, if applicable. Upload and save as "Other" document. Veterans Preference Documentation. If you are claiming veterans preference you must submit the Member 4 copy of your DD-214 Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, and/or other proof of veterans preference eligibility including your VA letter, form SF-15 ( and all required documents related to your SF-15 claim. Veterans can request the Member 4 copy of their DD-214 at, and can download a copy of their VA letter from (If applicable to you, you are required to upload each veterans' preference document and categorize as "DD-214" or "SF-15" or "Other Veterans Document") Reasonable Accommodation Documentation. If you are requesting a reasonable accommodation to the USA Hire Competency Based Assessments, submit documentation to support your request, including the Reasonable Accommodation Request Form found at .
    • SF-50 if you are or have been a Federal employee to demonstrate tenure and competitive/excepted service for eligibility purposes. (If applicable to you, you are Required to upload each applicable SF-50 and categorize as a "SF-50" document.)

    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.

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