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Interview & Selection Procedures FAQs

  1. How long does it usually take after the announcement closes until I am notified whether or not I will be interviewed?
  2. How will I be notified if I am to be interviewed?
  3. Who will interview me?
  4. If I'm interviewed, how long will it be before I am notified whether or not I got the job? How will I be notified?
  5. I have been scheduled for an interview, but I misplaced my information on where and when. Who do I contact?
  6. If I receive a "conditional offer" and intend to accept it, should I give notice to my present employer or should I wait for the official "final" offer?
  7. If selected, will I be required to undergo any type of background investigation?
  8. If selected, when will I start working for the National Archives?
  9. If I am hired by the National Archives, will I be required to complete a "probationary" period? If so, how long will this probationary period last?
  10. If I have to relocate to accept a job at the National Archives, will the National Archives pay for my moving expenses?
  11. What is a recruitment bonus and does the National Archives pay recruitment bonuses?

  1. How long does it usually take after the announcement closes until I am notified whether or not I will be interviewed?
    In most cases, you will be notified of your status within approximately four weeks after the job announcement closes. However, this time-frame may vary depending on the number of applications we receive. If we receive an unusually large number of applications, it could take up to 6 weeks to notify you of your status. If at any point you have questions about the status of your application, please feel free to call the contact listed on the job announcement.

  2. How will I be notified if I am to be interviewed?
    In most cases, the Selecting Official (the Supervisor) or a member of his/her staff will call you to arrange an interview. If we are unable to reach you by phone, we will try to contact you by e-mail or, if necessary, by letter.

  3. Who will interview me?
    You will be interviewed either by the Selecting Official (the Supervisor) alone or by an Interview Panel. Interview Panels are typically comprised of the Selecting Official or other senior manager, and 1 - 3 people familiar with the job.

  4. If I'm interviewed, how long will it be before I am notified whether or not I got the job? How will I be notified?
    We strive to make selection decisions as soon as possible once interviews have been conducted. However, the time-frame for selection varies depending on the nature of the position, the interview schedule and the availability of individual candidates and interviewers for interviews. As a result, the Selecting Official and/or Interview Panel is often the best source of information regarding the projected time-frame for filling the position. You may ask the Selecting Official and/or Interview Panel about their projected time-frame during your interview.

    Once the Selecting Official has made a final selection, he/she will contact the selected candidate and extend a "tentative" offer of employment. Our Office of Human Resources Services will then extend the "official" offer of employment to the selected candidate. Tentative offers typically are extended by telephone; official offers are extended by telephone and are followed by a formal letter outlining the terms and conditions of employment. Candidates who were interviewed but not selected are notified after the selected candidate has accepted the official offer.

  5. I have been scheduled for an interview, but I misplaced my information on where and when. Who do I contact?
    You should call the contact listed on the job announcement.

  6. If I receive a "tentative" offer and intend to accept it, should I give notice to my present employer or should I wait for the "official" offer?
    We recommend that you wait until you receive the official offer before giving notice to your present employer or making financial commitments to relocate.

  7. If selected, will I be required to undergo any type of background investigation?
    Yes. We conduct a standard background check on all new hires. For most positions, this is a fairly straightforward process that takes approximately three - five weeks to complete. For positions that require a higher-level "security clearance", the background investigation process is more extensive. The job announcement will indicate whether or not a position requires a security clearance. If you are selected for a position that requires a security clearance, you will receive specific guidance and instructions from us about what to expect during the investigation process.

  8. If selected, when will I start working for the National Archives?
    Most new hires start 2-4 weeks after receiving their tentative offer of employment.

  9. If I am hired by the National Archives, will I be required to complete a "probationary" period? If so, how long will this probationary period last?
    Yes, most of our positions require the completion of a one-year probationary period.

  10. If I have to relocate to accept a job at the National Archives, will the National Archives pay for my moving expenses?
    Typically, we do not pay for moving/relocation expenses. However, we may pay these expenses in situations where we determine that payment is warranted. The decision about whether or not to pay for moving/relocation expenses typically is made before a position is posted, and is reflected in the job announcement.

  11. What is a recruitment incentive and does the National Archives offer recruitment incentives?
    A recruitment incentive is a one-time payment of up to 25% of your annual starting salary. A recruitment incentive can be offered when we believe that, in the absence of such an incentive, we would encounter difficulty in filling the position due to a shortage of qualified applicants or related factors. Recruitment incentives are only available to "newly appointed" National Archives employees (e.g., individuals who have never worked for the Federal Government before or who have, but have had a break in service of 90 days or more). Before receiving a recruitment incentive, you would be required to sign a written agreement to complete a specified period of employment with us (typically one to three years).

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