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Office of the Director
United States
Office of Personnel Management
Washington, DC 20415-1000


Katherine Archuleta

Governmentwide Recruitment Guidance - Include Standardized Language in Job Opportunity Announcements Emphasizing the Value of National Service Experience

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is issuing guidance to help you recruit and hire individuals who have participated in National Service (e.g., Peace Corps, Americorps) programs. National Service participants gain valuable experience and learn critical competencies, knowledge, and skills that translate directly to Federal work.  They are a talent pool that can build agencies' workforce strength and help agencies meet their missions. 

We are providing this guidance in accordance with Section 4 of the July 15, 2013 Presidential Memorandum, Expanding National Service Through Partnerships to Advance Government Priorities.  For your reference, the Presidential Memorandum is available at

OPM’s memorandum for Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies, Governmentwide Recruitment Guidance to Develop a Pipeline for National Service Participants to the Federal Workforce, issued November 15, 2013 and available at, sets forth OPM’s initial guidance on this important issue.

One of the recommendations is to, “Include standardized language in your job opportunity announcements to be developed by OPM, which emphasizes the value of national service experience to your agency.”  Including relevant volunteer experience on a résumé for a Federal job can make a difference in an applicant's qualification rating.  Therefore, helping applicants understand that they should include volunteer experience on their résumés supports the goals of the President’s initiative to leverage the National Service talent pipeline.  Below is standardized language you may use in the Qualifications tab of your Job Opportunity Announcements:

National Service (i.e., volunteer experience) Language for JOA Qualifications Tab

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.

If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact Kimberly A. Holden, Deputy Associate Director for Recruitment and Hiring at (202) 606-8097 or by email at and put JOA Language-Volunteer Experience in the subject line.

cc: Human Resources Directors Our Mission is to Recruit, Retain and Honor a
World-Class Workforce to Serve the American People
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