Supervisory Public Affairs Specialist

Washington, D.C
Nov 28, 2020
Dec 06, 2020
Full Time


DOL seeks to attract and retain a high performing and diverse workforce in which employees' differences are respected and valued to better meet the varying needs of the diverse customers we serve. DOL fosters a diverse and inclusive work environment that promotes collaboration, flexibility and fairness so that all individuals are able to participate and contribute to their full potential.

Learn more about this agency


This position is located in the Department of Labor, Office of Public Affairs (OPA), Washington, DC.

If selected, you will serve as the agency's media spokesperson and serves as a senior expert and consultant to top agency and OPA officials on news media issues relating to agency laws, programs, policies, practices, and activities, and as the Director of Media and Editorial Services responsible for directing and supervising OPA's national office press operations.

- This position is outside the bargaining unit.
- This position is at the full performance level.

Major duties for this position include but are not limited to the following:
  • Supervises all agency media events including news conferences and briefings, conference call interviews, photo sessions and other events involving the media. Keeps agency executives apprised of key issues, messaging and concerns regarding agency activities and press coverage.
  • Manages, directs, and supervises the Department of Labor's Press office within the national Office of Public Affairs; briefs top officials on program and public affairs issues and participates in complex public affairs activities that involve the Secretary of Labor and other officials.
  • Serves as agency media spokesperson. Independently responds to media inquiries received about the agency; uses personal judgment and expert-level knowledge about the agency and its laws, policies, programs, and activities.
  • Establishes and maintains highly effective working relationships with representatives of the print and electronic media; various private sector groups, some of whom are indifferent or opposed to DOL programs or requirements; other Federal, State and local government offices, and other Departmental personnel.

Travel Required

Not required

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • U.S. Citizenship and 16 yrs old.
  • Appointment to this position may require a background investigation.
  • Requires a supervisory probationary period if not already met.

Applicants must meet time-in-grade, time-after-competitive-appointment and qualifications requirements within 30 calendar days after the closing date of the vacancy to be eligible for consideration for selection. Reference the "Required Documents" section for additional requirements.

You may not be aware, but in the regulations for agency ethics programs, there are requirements for supervisors. Section 2638.103 of Title 5 of the CFR states: Every supervisor in the executive branch has a heightened personal responsibility for advancing government ethics. It is imperative that supervisors serve as models of ethical behavior for subordinates. Supervisors have a responsibility to help ensure that subordinates are aware of their ethical obligations under the Standards of Conduct and that subordinates know how to contact agency ethics officials. Supervisors are also responsible for working with agency ethics officials to help resolve conflicts of interests and enforce government ethics laws and regulations, including those requiring certain employees to file financial disclosure reports. In addition, supervisors are responsible, when requested, for assisting agency ethics officials in evaluating potential conflicts of interest and identifying positions subject to financial disclosure requirements.


Applicants must have 52 weeks of specialized experience equivalent to at least the next lower grade level, GS-14, in the Federal Service.

Specialized experience is defined by experience providing authoritative advice and guidance to top management officials or stakeholders on the possible public and media reactions to proposed public affairs policy statements or agency actions; and, developing public affairs directives for public affairs policy procedures; evaluating public affairs program effectiveness; and, independently carrying out broad public affairs activities.

Additional selections may be made from this vacancy announcement should additional funding become available.


Education cannot be substituted at this grade level.

Additional information

Refer to these links for more information: GENERAL INFORMATION , ADDITIONAL DOCUMENTATION

How You Will Be Evaluated

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

Click here for Evaluation details. For Displaced Employees ONLY: if you meet the eligibility requirements for special priority selection under ICTAP / CTAP , you must be well-qualified for the position to receive consideration for special priority selection. ICTAP/CTAP eligibles will be considered "well-qualified" if they attain at least a rating score of 85 in a numerical rating scheme. Be sure to review DOL Account Eligibility Questions #24 and 27 to reflect that you are applying as an ICTAP/CTAP eligible and submit supporting documentation.

Evaluation Factors (Competencies) - All qualified applicants will be evaluated on the following key competencies:

Problem Solving: Identifies problems; determines accuracy and relevance of information; uses judgment to generate and evaluate alternatives, and to make recommendations.

Planning and Organizing Skills: Organizes work, sets priorities, and determines resource requirements; determines short- or long-term goals and strategies to achieve them; coordinates with other organizations or parts of the organization to accomplish goals; monitors progress and evaluates outcomes.

Oral Communication: Makes clear and convincing oral presentations to individuals or groups; listens effectively and clarifies information as needed; facilitates an open exchange of ideas and fosters atmosphere of open communication.

Written Communications: Expresses facts and ideas in writing in a clear, convincing and organized manner.

Building Collaborative Relationships: Uses consensus-building strategies and techniques to persuade key stakeholders to support a decision. Ensures that key stakeholders have an opportunity to express their opinions.

The information you provide may be verified by a review of your work experience and/or education, by checking references and through other means (ex. interview). Your evaluation may also include a review by an HR Specialist or panel and may include other assessment tools (ex. interview, structured interview, written test, work sample, etc). The examining Human Resources Office (HRO) makes the final determination concerning applicant ratings. Your resume MUST provide sufficient information to substantiate your vacancy question responses. If not, the HRO may amend your responses to more accurately reflect the level of competency indicated by the content of your resume.

To preview questions please click here .

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance

Drug test required

Position sensitivity and risk
High Risk (HR)

Trust determination process
Credentialing , Suitability/Fitness

Required Documents

The following documents must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. (ET) on the vacancy closing date. Follow the instructions: click How To Submit Supplemental Documentation Document . Warning: If you submit a document using the same document title, the 2nd submission will OVERWRITE the 1st submission. Also, do not upload password protected documents.

- The following documents are required from all applicants:

- Most Recent SF-50 that indicates grade, step, and competitive status (All status candidates or Reinstatement Eligibles MUST submit).

Warning: An award SF-50 (ex. cash or time off award) may not indicate grade, step and competitive status. For current DOL employees, an award SF-50 DOES NOT indicate grade and step. Ensure you submit your most recent SF-50 indicating grade, step and competitive status to establish your eligibility for this position.

- The following documents are required if applicable:

- Displaced Employee Placement Documents - Only required if requesting priority consideration under CTAP Eligibility .

- Cover Letters are not mandatory and will not be used to verify experience, but may be submitted.

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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