Q. What if I have a quick question and don’t need multiple appointments?
A. We will be happy to help you no matter how quick or how extensive your questions are. Contact the TSA Career Coaching Service (click here) and include a short summary of your question(s). Depending on the nature of your question(s) and a career coach’s availability, you may receive a quick response (perhaps within one business day) or you and the coach may decide to work together.
Q. Who are these career coaches and are they any good?
A. TSA has contracted with the Career Development Alliance (CDA) to provide expert career planning services. CDA provides career coaches and related services to TSA employees. The TSA Career Coaches are well-respected experts in career development. Read their biographies on the website.
Q. If I don’t like my career coach, may I switch?
A. Absolutely. TSA Career Coaches are experienced professionals. They know that you don’t always achieve rapport with someone immediately. They will also understand if you want a second opinion. Simply e-mail the TSA Career Coaching Service to request contact with another counselor. You may even ask for a specific career coach, if you prefer.
Q. My career coach has been excellent. To whom do I send my kudos?
A. First, please express your satisfaction directly to your TSA Career Coach. You may also send e-mails to a representative of the contractor, Career Development Alliance, and/or to the TSA Manager of the Career Coaching contract. Your feedback will be greatly appreciated.
Q. Do the career assessments need a password? How do I get one?
A. Some of the career assessments require a password and follow-up interpretation in a coaching session with a TSA Career Coach. A basic introduction can be found under Career Assessments. If you are interested in any of the career assessments, please email the TSA Career Coaching Service. A TSA Career Coach will contact you to discuss the best assessments to meet your needs, provide you with the information required to access the online assessment, and help you to understand the results.
Q. Does my coach have access to my dashboard or personnel records?
A. No. You are welcome to share your career history. Coaches will be asking questions and discussing your situation as you work together on your career goals.
Q. Can I just write one resume for two different jobs? Will my coach help me write more than one resume?
A. Your coach will suggest that each time you apply for a job at TSA you tailor your resume to that specific job. Each job title has its own requirements and list of critical competencies. Thus your resume must be written to best focus on the target position. Your coach will help you tailor more than one resume.
Q. I hear a computer scans our resumes when we apply. Is that true?
A. TSA does not use a resume scanner. A computer IS used to electronically deliver your application materials to HRAccess on USAJobs.gov. The computer also scores the numerical part of your application i.e., the multiple choice answers required when answering the vacancy questions that target specific core competencies such as Oral Communication. A human being actually reads how you have answered each question and looks for verification of your claim of level of ability in your resume. Read the paragraph, How You Will Be Evaluated, in the job announcement.
Q. How do I know what the “key words” are that should appear in my resume?
A. The skills and abilities listed in the job announcement are key as are all the core competencies considered critical to each position. Therefore, study the job announcement carefully and find a complete list of each position’s core competencies in the TSA Career Toolbox. Your career coach can help you create a relevant focused resume for TSA positions. See also the Federal Job Search section of our website.
Q. What if I don’t see a job opening posted for a position I am seeking, is it good to contact a Coach?
A. Yes! Building a top-notch resume / application package takes time. It is in your best interest to start working with your coach now on a resume BEFORE the job is posted to allow plenty of time to write the resume.
Q. When should I contact the TSA Career Coaching service if I am anticipating an interview?
A. IMMEDIATELY! Interviews are frequently scheduled with very little notice for interviewees, so begin preparing for interviews as soon as you submit your application. Start by reviewing our Job Search Section of the website and contacting a coach.