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Applications for SES positions will be accepted in the form of a resume or the Optional Application for Federal Employment (OF-612). Although, the federal government does not require a standard application form for most jobs, certain information is needed to evaluate your qualifications. If you decide to submit a format other than the OF-612, (i.e., a resume), the following information must be included:

  • Job Information - Announcement number, title, and grade.
  • Personal Information - Full name, mailing address (with zip code), day and evening phone numbers (with area code), Social Security number, country of citizenship, veterans' preference, reinstatement eligibility, highest Federal civilian grade held.
  • Education - High school name, city, and State; colleges or universities, name, city, and State; majors and type and year of any degrees received (if no degree, show total credits earned and indicate whether semester or quarter hours).
  • Work Experience - Job title, duties and accomplishments, employer's name and address, supervisor's name and phone number, starting and ending dates (month and year), hours per week, and salary. Indicate whether your current supervisor may be contacted. Prepare a separate entry for each job.
  • Other Qualifications – Job-related training (title and year); job-related skills; job-related certificates and licenses; and job-related honors, awards, and special accomplishments.


Annual Leave
Senior executives may carry over up to 90 days (720 hours) of annual leave from one leave year to the next. Additional leave accumulated prior to October 1994 is protected under a personal leave ceiling.

Career Senior Executive Service (SES) members may receive performance awards of 5–20 percent of basic pay, based on performance during the annual appraisal period.

View the U.S. Office of Personnel Management’s pay charts.

Last Move Home
Career members are entitled to moving expenses ("last move home") at retirement if they were previously reassigned or transferred geographically when eligible for retirement (optional or discontinued service), or within five years of eligibility for optional retirement.

Physical Examinations
All senior executives are entitled to a physical examination, provided at no charge, by the Public Health Service, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Contact OCHR at 202-685-6660 for additional information.

The Under Secretary may grant a sabbatical of up to 11 months for career members who have at least seven years of service (at least two years in the SES), are not eligible for retirement, and agree to remain in Government for two years after the sabbatical.


The Department of the Navy published the How to Prepare for the SES Guide. The Office of Personnel Management publishes a Guide to Senior Executive Service Qualifications. This document describes the Senior Executive Service merit staffing process as well as the Qualifications Review Board process. The guide also features details about executive qualifications, including key characteristics of the qualifications and definitions of leadership competencies that make up the qualifications. In addition, the guide provides an overview of and tips for writing ECQ statements, and gives examples of successful statements written using the Challenge-Context-Action-Result model.

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