U.S. citizens: Physical Scientist

U.S. Bureau of Reclamation
Lakewood, CO, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
Experience Level: 
Not Specified
Degree Required: 
Bachelor's (Or Equivalent)


Please note: this job post has expired! To the best of our knowledge, this job is no longer available and this page remains here for archival purposes only.



Reclamation is seeking a career professional looking for an opportunity to capitalize on his/her expertise as a Physical Scientist.  You can make a difference in the West by assisting in meeting increasing water demands while protecting the environment.


  • Uses Geographic Information System (GIS) software to design, develop, and implement advanced geoprocessing workflows and tasks through the use of currently accepted techniques or the development, testing, and application of new techniques for information sharing.
  • Develops web-based applications using programming languages to meet multi-faceted natural resource, environmental, water resource management data and analysis requirements.
  • Uses Geographic Information System (GIS) software to design, develop, and implement GIS databases using advanced data management and data storage tasks.
  • Devises approaches for straightforward and efficient analysis and display of complex spatial interrelationships including identification of trends, patterns, and relationships between multiple geographic themes.
  • Uses ESRI ArcGIS software in carrying out GIS related projects; develops and implements appropriate procedures, and prepares accurate GIS products and services.
  • Responsible for efficient project management practices and leading teams within a professional work environment, including coordinating a variety of simultaneous projects.
  • Writes technical memorandums to clients reporting results of project work and applied research and, where results are significant, prepares technical papers for presentation at professional society meetings or for publication in technical journals.

Travel Required

25% or less - Travel is to participate in technical meetings and to support work across Reclamation.

Supervisory status No

Promotion Potential 12


Conditions of Employment

  • U.S. Citizenship or U.S. National
  • Suitable for Federal Employment, determined by background investigation
  • You must submit resume and supporting documentation
  • You must meet specialized experience requirements
  • For Veterans consideration, submit document(s)
  • Submit transcript(s) to verify education requirements

You must meet all qualification requirements by the closing date of this announcement.



MINIMUM QUALIFICATION REQUIREMENTS: Applicants must first meet the Basic Education Qualification Requirements listed below:


A.  Degree: physical science, engineering, or mathematics that included 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science such as mechanics, dynamics, properties of materials, and electronics.


B. Combination of education and experience: education equivalent to one of the majors shown in A above that included at least 24 semester hours in physical science and/or related engineering science, plus appropriate experience or additional education.

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENT: In addition to meeting the Basic Education Qualification Requirements, applicants must have additional specialized experience as defined below: 

DEFINITION OF SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: To meet specialized experience, your resume must describe experience that demonstrates the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities as defined below: 

GS-12: One year of specialized experience equivalent in difficulty and complexity to at least the GS-11 level in the Federal Government. Specialized experience for this position includes the following examples of the skillset required for this position: conducting advanced geoprocessing tasks and developing fully documented workflows using ESRI ArcGIS desktop and ESRI ArcGIS Enterprise server products; developing spatial data and geoprocessing automation; conducting advanced data management, and/or data storage tasks using ESRI ArcGIS file/enterprise geodatabase and Spatial Database Engine (SDE) technology; designing and developing automated spatial and tabular data workflow processes; reviewing spatial analysis, geoprocessing, and data management tasks for technical adequacy; utilizing web/cloud based GIS technologies and capabilities to create data, maps and visualizations; and producing automated data driven mapping products; and providing efficient project management and leading multidisciplinary work teams. 

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social).  Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment.  You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

To find if Education is a requirement or if Experience can be substituted for experience you can look at OPMs Qualification and Standards by series:  


This position has a mandatory education requirement; you must furnish a copy of your transcript of college work completed (unofficial copy is acceptable). Transcripts must include the name of the college or university and date the degree was conferred. Non-submission will result in you being rated not qualified for the position.

Foreign Education: To receive credit for education completed outside the United States, applicants must show proof that the education has been submitted to a private organization that specializes in interpretation of foreign educational credentials and such education has been deemed at least equivalent to that gained in conventional U.S. education programs.

Additional information

Would you enjoy serving as a senior Physical Scientist providing technical expertise and leadership? Responsibilities include developing new methods and techniques in coordination of multidisciplinary specialists, being responsible for planning and carrying out assignments.

LOCATION: Bureau of Reclamation; Technical Service Center; Water and Environmental Resources Division; Geographic Applications & Analysis Group; Lakewood, Colorado. 

Recruitment and/or relocation incentives may be authorized. The selectee(s) for the vacancy, if otherwise eligible and qualified, may be offered a recruitment or relocation incentive. The decision to offer an incentive to the selectee(s) of this vacancy will be made on a case-by-case basis and is neither promised nor guaranteed.

DOI uses E-Verify to confirm the employment eligibility of all newly hired employees. To learn more about E-Verify, including your rights and responsibilities, please visit www.dhs.gov/E-Verify.

The Bureau of Reclamation has determined that the duties of this position are suitable for telework and the selectee may be allowed to telework with supervisor approval.

This position is designated as a NON-SENSITIVE position.  It requires a fully completed and favorable adjudicated Low Risk Background Investigation (T1 (NACI)) that is current.  This is a condition of employment.

Selective Service: If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law. For more information visit: http://www.sss.gov.

Equal Employment Opportunity: The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, disability and genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, or other non-merit factor.

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Category rating and selection procedures will be used for evaluating this position. If you meet the basic qualification requirements, your on-line responses to the vacancy assessment questionnaire will be used to determine the quality and extent of your experience, education, training, etc., for placement in one of the following categories: 1) Best Qualified, 2) Well Qualified and 3) Qualified. Qualified candidates will be assigned a numerical score on a scale of 70-100 and Veterans with preference will be placed at the top of their respective category. The assessment questionnaire will take you approximately 20minutes to complete.

Applicants will be further evaluated on the following Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs) through your resume and responses to the online questions.

1. Advanced knowledge of data management of web and/or cloud based GIS resources including publishing and sharing workflows and utilizing workflows for preparing and optimizing data and maps to be hosted/published into web GIS environments. Advanced knowledge for designing, developing and integrating data and map products for web and mobile GIS based applications, and assessing GIS user needs.

2. Knowledge of geographic information system concepts, principles, development tools; practices and methods of GIS design and administration; and systems analysis methods and techniques applicable to GIS applications development: including, computerized mapping and attribute-data conversion, manipulation and analysis; applicable programming languages and tools; relational database systems including architectures, design and development principles; methods and terminology applicable to the display of spatial relationships of data; advanced analytical techniques; and basic principles and practices of systems and network administration.

3. Knowledge and demonstrated ability to prepare written technical reports including recommendations, deliver oral presentations, lead professional teams and work with others in a team setting, construct data sharing and media to convey information, and to apply project management practices within a professional work environment. 

Applicants must make a fair and accurate assessment of their qualifications. If a determination is made that you have rated yourself higher than is apparent in your description of experience, competencies, skills, and/or education/training OR that your resume/application is incomplete, you may be rated ineligible or your score may be lowered.

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance Other

Drug test required No

Required Documents

To be considered for this position, applicants are required to submit a resume (with dates of employment, i.e. years and months, schedule, i.e. hours worked, and grade if federal employment), an on-line assessment questionnaire, and the following supporting documents, as appropriate:

--TRANSCRIPT(S): All applicants MUST furnish a copy of your college transcript(s), if applicable. If selected, you will be required to provide official college transcripts to verify your educational qualifications prior to reporting for work.

--DD-214, CERTIFICATE OF RELEASE FROM ACTIVE DUTY: If you are entitled to veterans’ preference, you must provide a copy of your DD-214, and you should indicate the type of veterans’ preference you are claiming on your resume. Your veterans’ preference entitlement will be verified by the employing agency.

--For 5-point veterans' preference, submit a copy of your DD-214 (Member 4 Copy), or an official statement of service from your command if you are currently on active duty, or other official documentation (e.g., documentation of receipt of a campaign badge or expeditionary medal) that proves your military service was performed under honorable conditions.

--For 10-point veterans' preference, please submit a Standard Form (SF) 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference, DD-214, and the required documentation requested by this form.

--For information on veteran's eligibility visit: http://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/veterans-services/vet-guide/.

--CTAP/ICTAP provides placement assistance to permanent Federal employees who are surplus, displaced or involuntarily separated. Applicants claiming CTAP-ICTAP eligibility must submit a copy of their most recent performance appraisal, proof of eligibility and most current SF-50 noting position, grade level, and duty location with their application. To be considered under CTAP/ICTAP, applicants must be well-qualified, i.e. meet the minimum qualification requirements, including selective factors, education and experience requirements and score at least 90 on the assessment questionnaire as established, and be able to perform the duties of the position upon entry. For information on CTAP/ICTAP, visit: https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/workforce-restructuring/employ....


A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding. Learn more about federal benefits.

Working for the Bureau of Reclamation offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes paid vacation, sick leave, holidays, life insurance, health benefits, and participation in the Federal Employees Retirement System. To explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees, visit: https://www.usajobs.gov/Help/working-in-government/benefits/

How to Apply

Applications (resume and assessment questionnaire) for this vacancy MUST be received online BEFORE midnight Eastern Time (Washington D.C. time) on the closing date of this announcement. When you're ready to apply, click the blue APPLY ONLINE button at the side of the page. This vacancy is being announced through Bureau of Reclamation's Hiring System--HireMe. For more information about the HireMe system and the registration process, visit: http://www.usbr.gov/hr/hireme.html.

As part of the on-line application process, applicants may be required to submit supporting documents. Failure to submit the requested supporting documents may result in your not being considered for this position.

Options for submitting supporting documentation include Auto Requested Fax or uploading from your USAJOBS profile - instructions provided during the online application process. In addition, you may E-mail your supporting documentation to , fax directly to the HR Office at 303-445-6349, mail to (DFC) 6th and Kipling Building 67, Rm 348, Denver, CO 80225, OR hand-deliver to HR Office: Denver Federal Center (DFC) 6th and Kipling, Bldg 40, Denver, CO 80225. Include your name and the vacancy number on the supporting document(s).

This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify us at the phone number shown at the bottom of this page. The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be on a case-by-case basis.

Agency contact information

HR Service Center


Phone 303-445-2684

Fax 303-445-6349