Ask a Coach

Q: How can I brush up on some of the TSA Core Competencies?

A: Improving TSA Core Competencies relevant to the positions you're interested in holding is always a good idea. There are two great ways you can do this.

  1. First off, sign up for courses through the TSA's Online Learning Center (OLC). You've probably taken OLC courses before as mandated training, but there are plenty of courses available to take for personal enrichment. You can find a list of courses via the "Career Toolbox" within this website. Select "Competency Catalog."  It'll bring up a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet listing all courses broken down by competency.  You can sign up the same way you do for your training.
  2. Another way to strengthen your competencies is to participate in the TSA Mentoring Program, if it is offered by your airport. You'll work with a mentor who'll help you identify weakness in competencies and look for ways to improve them.

New Changes to USAJobs

Have you been to lately and noticed the changes? While the website doesn't look very different, there have been some significant changes that make it even easier for you to search for positions within the Federal government.

Hiring Path Searches

First off, you can now easily search for positions based upon unique hiring paths, such as veteran status, individuals with disabilities, students and recent graduates, military spouses, and senior executives, among others. If you scroll down the USAJobs homepage, you'll find a list of boxes that cover each hiring path. Click on the relevant hiring path to find out more information about types of positions available. Look for a box that says either "Search Jobs" or "Begin Your Search" start directly searching for jobs that fit your unique hiring path criteria.

Filtered Searches

Another new change is with the filter capabilities after you've run a search. Once you've entered in your search terms and/or location on the homepage and press "search," you'll be taken to the search results page. If you realize you'd like to filter down the results, look to the left-hand side of the page. You'll see two filter menus: "Top Filters" and "More Filters." If you don't see what you want in "Top Filters," click on "More Filters" and refine your search. This makes it even easier to find the position right for you.

One of the biggest changes you'll recognize after you've run a search is the "Advanced Search" options are now gone. Advanced Search allowed you to refine your search results after you received them; most of those capabilities are now available through the filters previously mentioned. Additionally, you can be even more specific now when you run your initial search on the homepage. Put all of the keywords you're looking for (agency, position, pay band, etc.) in the keywords box and the relevant results will pop up. This new search technology allows for faster and more relevant search results.

Missing Saved Searches

There is one slight downside to this new technology to be aware of. If you have previously saved searches within your USAJobs account, you'll notice that searches made before April 8, 2017, are now archived. You'll either have to unarchive these searches or create new ones if you want to utilize this functionality. It's easy enough to do:

  • Log into your USAJobs Profile.
  • Click on the "Saved Search" tab.
  • Click "Archived." This will show you a list of all of your older, archived saved searches.
  • Click the name of the search you want to unarchive.
  • Click "Unarchive Search" button, which will move the search back to the "Active Saved Search" tab.

It is important to either unarchive your searches or make a new search in order to continue receiving saved search email notifications.


You'll find one more new feature if you scroll down the USAJobs homepage – an "Events" section that covers current and upcoming hiring events, career fairs and virtual trainings for job seekers.

Visit USAJobs today to see what's new and to find your perfect position!