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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is seeking bright, innovative, results-driven recent graduates under the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The NDAA is a highly competitive authority appointing recent college graduates into entry-level personnel for subsequent advancement to the journey-level in professional and administrative career fields.

This job is open to

Recent graduates

Special authorities

Clarification from the agency

Recent graduates who have completed a qualifying bachelors, masters, professional, or doctorate from a qualifying educational institution within the previous (2) two years (using the date of your application for this vacancy). Exception: A veteran due to military service obligation was unable to apply with 2 years of receiving their degree, will have up to (4) four years after degree completion to apply.


This position is located in the Human Capital Strategy Division (HCSD) in the Office of Human Capital Services (OHCS), a corporate staff office of the Under Secretary for Oceans and Atmosphere and Administrator, with one vacancy in Silver Spring, MD.

As a Human Resources Data Scientist, you will perform the following duties:

  • Performs assignments related to the management, upkeep, improvement, and analysis of workforce data. Provides support with respect to data analysis and visualization for more effective communication of HR tasks.
  • Participates in data projects with the responsibility to carry out assignments in effective and efficient manner. Performs statistical analysis of workforce data to identify data patterns and trends; identifies actionable insights and works with higher level HR Specialist to develop strategies and solutions.
  • Conducts research into new data software or methods. Conducts analysis in a programming or statistical software suite such as: R, Python, SAS, SPSS, STATA, Tableau, PowerBI, etc. to build predictive models and machine-learning algorithms to better understand current and future employee behavior; partnering with outside vendors on use of AI to drive stronger people insights.
  • Translates complex HR data into an easily understood narrative utilizing a variety of infographics and visualizations in order to better communicate data findings. Contributes to reports carrying out a portion of assignments and working with higher level scientists to analyze the data and develop recommendations.

These duties are described at the FPL ZP-3, the ZP-2 is developmental leading to such performance.


Conditions of Employment

Must be a U.S. Citizen or National to apply.Required to pass a background investigation and fingerprint check.Must be suitable for Federal employment.Must be registered for Selective Service, if applicable ( minimum one year probationary period will be required.Meet Recent Graduate Eligibility RequirementsThis position will be filled under the DOC Alternative Personnel System (CAPS). This system replaced the Federal GS pay plan and structure. Under CAPS, positions are classified by career, pay plan, and pay band.

The ZP-2 is equivalent to the GS-7/9 grade levels. The ZP-3 is equivalent to the GS-11/12.

This position is not in the bargaining unit.


College Transcript:  Applicants must submit a copy of their college transcript that lists college courses, course title, and number of credit hours. If you have a future graduation date, you must provide a letter from the school registrars’s office that includes the name of the student/applicant, the name of the school, and verification of your anticipated graduation date. The transcripts or letter must indicate that the degree has been conferred. You may submit an unofficial copy of the transcript at the initial phase of the application process, but an official certified copy must be received before you can report to duty.

Qualifying Education Institution: Any of the following educational institutions or curricula that have been accredited by an accrediting body recognized by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education:


Qualification requirements in the vacancy announcements are based on the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Qualification Standards Handbook, which contains federal qualification standards. This handbook is available on the Office of Personnel Management’s website located at:

BASIC REQUIREMENTS: This position has a positive Education Requirement in addition to at least one year of Specialized Experience OR substitution of education for experience OR combination (if applicable) in order to be found minimally qualified. Transcripts must be submitted with your application package. You MUST meet the following requirements:

To qualify for the 1560 series:

A. Degree: Mathematics, statistics, computer science, data science or field directly related to the position. The degree must be in a major field of study (at least at the baccalaureate level) that is appropriate for the position.


B. Combination of education and experience: Courses equivalent to a major field of study (30 semester hours) as shown in paragraph A above, plus additional education or appropriate experience.


SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: Applicants must possess one year of specialized experience equivalent in difficulty and responsibility to the next lower grade level in the Federal Service. Specialized experience is experience that has equipped the applicant with the particular competencies/knowledge, skills and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position.

This experience need not have been in the federal government. 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 qualify at the ZP-2 level:

SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: In addition to meeting the basic requirements above, applicants must also have one full year (52 weeks) of specialized experience equivalent to the ZP-1 or GS-05 level of the Federal service is defined as meeting ALL of the following experience:

  • Performing data and statistical analyses using programming or statistical software; and
  • Utilizing predictive models and machine-learning algorithms.



One full year of graduate-level education


Superior Academic Achievement as demonstrated by a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with one of the following. NOTE: It is your responsibility to ensure your application clearly states how you meet the below provision:

A grade point average (GPA) of 2.9 or higher based on a 4.0 scale for all completed undergraduate courses, or those completed in the last 2 full years of undergraduate study.


COMBINATION: A combination of related graduate-level education and specialized experience.

To qualify at the ZP-3 level:

SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: In addition to meeting the basic requirements above, applicants must also have one full year (52 weeks) of specialized experience equivalent to the ZP-2 or GS-09 level of the Federal service is defined as meeting ALL of the following experience:

  • Conducting data and statistical analyses using programming or statistical software;
  • Building predictive models and machine-learning algorithms; and
  • Collaborating with customers on program/project decisions.


EDUCATION: 3 years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a Ph.D. degree or Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree


COMBINATION: A combination education and experience as described above.

NOTE: Only graduate education in excess of two years is qualifying for combination.

Additional information

NOAA participates in e-Verify. E-Verify is an Internet based system operated by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in partnership with the Social Security Administration (SSA) that enables participating employers to electronically verify the employment eligibility of their newly hired employees.

How You Will Be Evaluated

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

Your resume, supporting documents and responses to the online questionnaire will be reviewed to determine if you meet eligibility, minimum qualification and basic qualification requirements (if applicable).