SF-171 is obsolete: Not the Correct Form of US Employment Applicaton

April 11, 2007 – 7:41 am

For years the only way to apply for Federal jobs was through filling out the Standard Form 171, or SF-171.  This form was hated by most job applicants as it was long, cumbersome, and made it difficult for originality and creativity to shine.  Professional resume writing services sometimes assisted in filling out SF-171’s, and could utilize creative writing skills in the some of the blocks of type on the form, but the eye catching appeal of graphics available to the users of private sector resumes were not available to those who used the SF-171.  And the benefits of using a computer with word processing software were not available then.  If a mistake was made on the SF-171, of if the writer wished to go back and change a sentence to something that might help the applicant more, then the entire form had to be retyped in a typewriter. A few software companies brought out software that allowed tying the form on a computer screen and printing it out on a laser printer, but this software was very expensive and didn’t work that well.Thankfully the new Federal hiring process has declared the SF-171 obsolete and it is no longer used.Applicants for Federal positions today will prepare a Federal resume which, while longer than those used in the private sector, is a vast improvement over the old standard form.  Also KSA’s or Knowledge Skills and Aptitude questions generally must be answered and must accompany the Federal resume.  For higher level positions the SES resume with ECQ’s will be required.  But with all of these new systems the chance to make an applicant look better and use professional writing and resume preparation skills now exists, good news for the Federal job applicant.

Post a Comment