Accretion-of-Duties Promotion - A noncompetitive promotion of an employee whose position evolves to a higher grade with the "old" position being absorbed into the "new" one.
Career Ladder Position
- A position for which the full performance level is identified and all employees in the same career ladder are given grade-building experience. Employees may be promoted without further competition (career promotions) as they demonstrate the ability and readiness to perform at the next higher level and when legal requirements, such as time-n-grade, are met.
Career Service Appointment - A career appointment confers permanent status and career appointees have the greatest possible job protection. They also have permanent reinstatement eligibility, which means that, should they leave Federal service, they may be considered for re-employment without having to take another competitive Civil Service examination.
Career Transition Assistance Plan - A program to help surplus or displaced Federal employees (e.g., employees in an organization expected to conduct a reduction-in-force) find other employment. One plan, CTAP, covers employees of the Department and requires that they be given priority selection for any positions for which they apply and are well-qualified. An individual from outside the Department cannot be selected if an employee with CTAP eligibility is available. A second plan, the Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP) requires the selection of a displaced employee from another Federal agency before hiring an individual from outside the Government.
Certificates - Certificate or Certificate of Eligibles - Sometimes called a "cert," this is the list of applicants which is referred to the selecting official (usually the supervisor of the position being filled). The applicants on the certificate are the best qualified individuals who applied for the position. There are three types of certificates of eligibles:
- Merit Promotion Certificate of Eligibles - Competitive: List of applicants seeking promotion or promotion potential. (The majority of these applicants already have competitive status).
- Merit Promotion Certificate of Eligibles - Noncompetitive: List of applicants who meet one of the following requirements:
- Are already at the grade of the vacant position.
- Were formerly at the grade of the vacant position.
- Hold or have held a permanent position with the same potential as the vacant position.
- Are eligible under a noncompetitive hiring authority.
- Certificate of Eligibles - DEU or Open Competitive (issued by the Delegated Examining Unit in Kansas City Human Resources Office): These applicants are U.S. citizens and may or may not have status. Veteran preference points are added to the scores of eligible veterans.
Classification (Position Classification) - The process of placing a General Schedule position into an occupational series and grade (e.g., GS-9), and assigning an official title by comparing the duties and responsibilities of the position (not the qualifications of the incumbent) with criteria in standards published by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. The General Schedule classification system was established in statute (5 U.S.C. Chapter 51) in 1949. There is a similar system for trades and labor (blue collar) positions.
Critical Element - A component of a position included in an employee's performance plan consisting of one or more duties and responsibilities which contribute toward accomplishing organizational goals and objectives and which is so important that unacceptable performance on the element would result in unacceptable performance in the position.
Excepted Service Appointment
- This type of appointment is made for positions excepted from the competitive system by law, by executive order, or with Office of Personnel Management approval.
Merit System Principles
- Nine principles established in law (5 U.S.C. 2301) that serve as the underpinning of the Federal personnel management system, including requirements for fair and open competition in recruiting and hiring, equal pay for equal work, freedom from arbitrary action and favoritism.
Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) - A Federal agency charged with protecting the integrity of the Federal merit system and the rights of Federal employees. The Board's responsibilities include hearing and adjudicating employees' appeals of adverse actions (e.g., removals, suspensions, and demotions).
- A component of an employee's position included in an employee's performance plan which does not meet the definition of a critical element but is of sufficient importance to warrant written appraisal. Non-critical elements cannot be used in two-level performance appraisal systems.
- The major duties and responsibilities of a position included in an employee's performance plan which contribute toward accomplishing organizational goals and objectives. Performance elements may be either critical or non-critical. For example, "types correspondence" could be a performance element.
Performance Plan - The aggregation of all of an employee's written performance elements and standards.
Performance Standard - A statement of the expectations or requirements established by the supervisory/managerial chain for a performance element at a particular rating level. For example, "finished correspondence almost never needs revision to correct spelling, grammar or format" could be a performance standard for a particular level (e.g., Fully Successful).
Performance Review Board - A board comprised of designated officials responsible for making recommendations to the final rating official on SES performance ratings, bonuses, and recertification decisions. (In USDA, members are designated by the Assistant Secretary of Administration and Chief Financial Officer, who also makes final rating decisions.)
Priority Placement Program - A program which gives priority consideration to permanent employees who have been downgraded without personal cause from positions at GS-15 and below (and equivalent in other pay systems). Eligible employees must register for the program and indicate the job series, grade levels, and geographic areas for which they wish consideration. Operation of the program is a bureau option as long as the CTAP and ICTAP programs are in place. Eligibility expires after two years.
Rating of Record
- The summary rating (e.g., Outstanding) required at the end of an appraisal period.
Reemployment Priority List - The mechanism agencies use to give reemployment consideration to their former competitive service employees who have been separated by reduction-in-force or who have fully recovered from a compensable injury after more than one year. Individuals on the List receive priority consideration for positions in their agency in the local commuting area which otherwise would be filled from outside the agency. Employees must register for the RPL, indicating the conditions under which they will accept employment (such as grade, series, and work schedule). Career employees are eligible for the program for two years; eligibility for career conditional employees expires after one year.