You need to complete a background check and drug test and be a U.S. citizen.
The background check start with either the SF-86 or SF-85P (sample here from the OPM website, a detailed questionnaire about your personal background and where you’ve lived. This includes drug use. Getting your background check cleared can take several weeks or longer.
For our positions you must be a U.S. citizen. If you are a permanent resident, check out 18F—they can hire non-citizens for some roles—or other civic tech organizations.
The salary for digital service experts ranges from less than $100,000 to around $160,000. The Digital Service does not control salary determinations. Salaries are determined by HR officials based on résumé and experience.
To help with negotiations and get you close to previous salary, the government may require a pay stub or W-2. Only base salary will generally be considered; not bonuses, commissions, stock compensation, or hourly consulting.
Our staff are hired under a special authority and paid on the same General Schedule (GS) payscale as most other federal employees. The GS system has 15 “grades” and 10 “steps” per grade. Check out the Washington, D.C., GS payscale table on the OPM website.
Candidates receive health care and other benefits (such as retirement savings account eligibility). For a wealth of information and different benefit plans offered look on the OPM website.
We operate on a tour of service model. Most people serve for one or two years, with the option to extend up to four years. We want to be able to do their best work while they are here and share what they’ve learned at USDS across different industries when they leave. USDS can accept some shorter tours, typically when people are taking a leave of absence from their other job to temporarily join USDS on a full-time basis. Time commitments are not binding.
It depends. We strive to have you go through the interview process within four weeks. Onboarding can take an additional four to six weeks depending on when you get an offer from the HR team and how long the background check takes. Your time in the onboarding process is generally out of our control at USDS.
You should receive an email confirmation when your application is submitted. If you are selected to move on to interviews, you will be connected with a member of the USDS Talent Team. They will be your guide throughout your interview process.
The roles and responsibilities of any given USDS staff member vary tremendously, because agencies have different technological needs. Even projects within the same agency require distinct skill sets.
Because of the unpredictability and breadth of our engagements, we focus on hiring technical experts who can adapt to a project’s needs, though we also hire specialists for particular projects.
We are always hiring for a number of different roles, so if you are an expert in your field and are interested in working at USDS, you should apply!
You are welcome to apply again after one year with an updated résumé. We recommend looking into other civic tech organizations to stay involved in this important work at all levels — federal, state, and local.
Unfortunately, we are not set up to support internships. We recommend looking into other civic tech organizations that are able to hire and support interns.