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  • Anyone have an idea of how many they’re looking to hire? Just wondering if this one of those postings where 9,000 people are fighting for 15 spots.

    Comment


    • Anthropologist
      Anthropologist commented
      Editing a comment
      @gkov

      Fingers crossed. I'm still waiting to be scheduled for the field office day.

    • gkov
      gkov commented
      Editing a comment
      Me too, coming up on my two week mark.

    • Anthropologist
      Anthropologist commented
      Editing a comment
      Same here.

    • GenesisPure1
      GenesisPure1 commented
      Editing a comment
      May the odds be ever in your favor...
      Last edited by GenesisPure1; 01-06-2021, 09:54 AM.

  • I just passed the battery assessment today, I got an email saying that I need to select a field office before the 23d of Nov. I'm having issues on the TSA dashboard when I go to select the office it says to be determined and theres no way me for me to select an office. Was anyone else having this issue? I emailed them but it said it could take up to 2 days to replay.

    Comment


    • Snake_J13
      Snake_J13 commented
      Editing a comment
      Did you click the select field office at the bottom left? It should be like a to do tab. I was just on there an hr ago and it worked. I was clicking the option in the center like you and it wouldn't work.

  • How likely are you to get the FO you picked? Is it like the FBI where the big FO's are always easier to get because they're always looking for people?
    Last edited by gkov; 11-18-2020, 05:06 PM.

    Comment


    • Jrod26
      Jrod26 commented
      Editing a comment
      Anthropologist,

      I don’t think OPM allows that. I know they don’t allow it with the US Marshal Service.

    • gkov
      gkov commented
      Editing a comment
      @anthropologist
      Doesn't sf get good locality pay?

    • Anthropologist
      Anthropologist commented
      Editing a comment
      @Jrod26

      Too bad! I guess that I'll just hope for the other locations. I really don't mind moving anywhere...

      @gkov

      Yes, but not enough from what I've been told.

    • GenesisPure1
      GenesisPure1 commented
      Editing a comment
      When I came thru you didn't get a preference. You selected the offices you were willing to go to and if they offered you a spot it was for the place you selected or one of the places you selected, they won't give you a preference, unless you pick New York or LA, they always need people.

  • For those who have moved on from FAB and have their FA scheduled, how long did it take to get it scheduled? Also, I'm assuming the FO will contact me when it is scheduled, right?

    Comment


    • Saluki89
      Saluki89 commented
      Editing a comment
      Help desk replied to me last week. Said COVID is messing stuff up and to not expect a scheduling call until at the earliest December

    • gkov
      gkov commented
      Editing a comment
      Help desk just reiterated what the original email said, that the office will contact me. Hurry and wait.

    • Anthropologist
      Anthropologist commented
      Editing a comment
      The Help Desk told me basically the same thing; expect calls sometime after the 1st of December.

      @gkov

      I'm in the NE, too. I was really hoping to get the FO finished before the end of the year!

    • gkov
      gkov commented
      Editing a comment
      I hope so too, I don't wanna miss this plane!

  • Nearly every major city is probably going to lockdown again this week or next week, so I’d be prepared to start waiting again.

    Comment


    • KieranMc91
      KieranMc91 commented
      Editing a comment
      2september Do you need to bring clothes to change? I'm planning on wearing business attire to the panel interview. I dont see myself doing the PT in a suit and tie with dress shoes lol

    • Forester87
      Forester87 commented
      Editing a comment
      Bring along a backpack with gym clothes and shoes. Wear business attire to the interview.

    • 2september
      2september commented
      Editing a comment
      What Forester said, once you schedule your interview, they should send you an email with more details

    • smokeybear83
      smokeybear83 commented
      Editing a comment
      How far out is your interview scheduled?

  • Any current or former FAMS know the tattoo policy? Can’t find anything online about it or what is enforced

    Comment


    • BlameToby31
      BlameToby31 commented
      Editing a comment
      Well if you need to blend in with regular passengers, they should encourage tattoos. haha

    • HiFlyR
      HiFlyR commented
      Editing a comment
      I think as long as you don't have anything on your hands/fingers and neck/face it's ok. Also, per usual no tattoos that are offensive, obscene, or criminal related. I've flown with guys who have full sleeves and wore short sleeve shirts.

      The academy may be more strict and you may have to wear long sleeves if you have a sleeve, but I can't remember.

      Same with hair (for males). In the academy it couldn't be longer than I think the ears, but once I got into the field office saw guys with longer hair.

      Facial hair was clean shaven in the academy. Some guys got waivers (medical and/or religious) to keep their beards. Once you graduate feel free to go full on No Shave November.

      The job is all about blending in. So the more you look like a normal person the better.

  • Well I just hit my 2 week mark after passing the FAB and haven't heard anything . Email sent to the helpdesk. I guess COVID is holding stuff back.

    Comment


    • Anthropologist
      Anthropologist commented
      Editing a comment
      2020 has certainly not been the best year for changing federal jobs.

  • Does anyone know if it is possible to transfer field offices down the line? Like a year or two later possibly

    Comment


    • KieranMc91
      KieranMc91 commented
      Editing a comment
      When you select a FO for the interview will that have any effect on where you are assigned?

    • HiFlyR
      HiFlyR commented
      Editing a comment
      Transfers, when they rarely happen, are usually done by seniority. Plenty of the old guard want to get to the better locations. I'm sure there's other ways around it, but that is what is typical.

    • UCLA1998
      UCLA1998 commented
      Editing a comment
      VLTs occur when FAMS is hiring but are solely based on seniority and location. Expect to spend 4-7 years in your career initial office.

    • GenesisPure1
      GenesisPure1 commented
      Editing a comment
      That's a negative ghost rider

  • I have my PT test coming up soon and was wondering if watches (basic stopwatch type) are allowed for the run? I know they aren't allowed for some agencies (FBI) and was wondering what the ruling was for the FAMS. Also does anyone know why some agencies don't allow watches? I feel like it is a vital tool to help pace the run if it is done on a track.

    Comment


    • Lone-ranger
      Lone-ranger commented
      Editing a comment
      Unfortunately, I think that’s the reason. My guess is someone came up with the theory of how knowing your times will somehow give you an advantage. I don’t get it.

    • 2september
      2september commented
      Editing a comment
      That is so strange, the only explanation for no watches I could think of was if someone came close to pass/fail or a different rating they would argue that THEIR watch put them in said performance group when the official watch wouldn't and they got sick of arguing with applicants.

    • gkov
      gkov commented
      Editing a comment
      Watches are only good if you're not used to running. Just get used to running a good pace and you'll be okay. Plenty of good stuff on youtube on how to get your run time down to 7 minute mile.
      Last edited by gkov; 11-24-2020, 07:35 PM.

    • GenesisPure1
      GenesisPure1 commented
      Editing a comment
      You will most likely run on a treadmill

  • Is the PT test a big factor?
    Also will not finishing the mile and a half hurt you in the process?

    Comment


    • gkov
      gkov commented
      Editing a comment
      It's used to rate you against other candidates... So i would say yes it would hurt you. If you can't finish the run on the test you're going to have a lot of trouble in the academy.

    • Anthropologist
      Anthropologist commented
      Editing a comment
      I recommend that you focus on improving your run distance immediately.

    • davidjbar
      davidjbar commented
      Editing a comment
      If you can’t finish the mile and a half I highly doubt you will get selected, but if you do PT at the academy will be a nightmare for you and you will get targeted. You’re gonna need to put feet to pavement like yesterday.

    • GenesisPure1
      GenesisPure1 commented
      Editing a comment
      If you can't finish the PT test you will be DQ'd

  • For those asking about watches during the PT test, they were not allowed when I took it 3 years ago. It was explained that they didn’t want to create a situation for potential disputes over finish times. If everyone is keeping track of their own time it may lead to disagreements from the what the test administrator has. So no watches one time keeper. Also it is highly likely you will do the run on a treadmill. In my class there were only a handful that did theirs outside.

    Comment


    • davidjbar
      davidjbar commented
      Editing a comment
      They will set the incline to one and then you set it to whatever speed setting you want. You can see the treadmill display and adjust the speed whenever and to whatever you want.

    • HiFlyR
      HiFlyR commented
      Editing a comment
      When I did it the incline was on 1% and the you controlled the speed setting for whatever you wanted. I think I also called out my own time when I hit 1.5 miles because the guys were behind me and really couldn't see. They obviously checked the treadmill to make sure I didn't call out 9 minutes when it really was 11, or I was finished but really only ran 1.25, but overall they were pretty relaxed about it.

    • 2september
      2september commented
      Editing a comment
      Is a 1% incline at 0.1 or 1 on a treadmill? Want to practice on a treadmill

    • davidjbar
      davidjbar commented
      Editing a comment
      Set it to 1 not .1. Some treadmills let you set micro increments.

  • Alright ladies and gentlemen, because the G gave me some time off a little early for Thanksgiving, and I'm feeling nostalgic thinking about all the Thanksgiving's I spent at a hotel bar eating a burger or lukewarm turkey dinner. I figured I'd give you some additional tips. Some of these are from messages and some are off the top of my head.

    - Government Employee Lateral Pay. FAMS don't lateral pay all government employees. If you have some LEO/military experience they may give you a little bump in G band but don't expect to lateral to an H or I. If you're former TSA you may lateral at a higher rate, but I don't really know. I know if you're like a GS-11 civilian employee (think analyst/attorney/etc) they'll say you have no experience for the law enforcement side of the job and you'll start at the bottom of G band. Just be aware of the pay cut you may be taking. The fact you get LEAP helps make up the difference.

    - PT test. Prepare for it. When I went through it was participation only. However, in the academy so many people couldn't do a chin up or were running 20 minute 1.5 miles it made the instructors VERY unhappy. I'm guessing they changed it now, and while there may not be a set standard they are definitely looking at it more. It will make your life easier overall. I'm not saying you have to be an ironman, just having decent scores will make PT that much easier.

    - Seriously get in shape. It will only help you once out of the academy. The job is very sedentary. If you aren't physically active you will put weight on very quickly. No matter where you go, always bring gym clothes. Every hotel will have a gym. Most places are in safe areas where you can go out for a run. Don't be the FAM who needs a seat belt extender on the plane.

    - Transfers are based on seniority. Don't expect to go anywhere for a good 5-7 years. Think about that when you receive your final offer. My first final offer from HR was my least desirable location. I asked if my first location had any openings and they gave me the run around saying if I didn't accept now there may not be a position later...blah blah blah. I told them I'd wait a few days, and lo and behold HR called with an offer for my first choice. I'm not saying do what I did (because it's very true they could fill the position), but if you really cant see yourself living somewhere, for example in NYC, for 5-7 years then don't accept it.

    - If you want bigger paychecks offer to fly on the holidays. I'm not talking about just Thanksgiving and Christmas. Any government holiday (Veterans Day, Presidents Day, MLK Day, etc). It's double pay. Do it.

    - Keep your head down and don't make a fuss. In this job you're rarely in the office so if people don't know who you are when you walk in, that's a good thing. When I left, I don't think my ASAC would be able to match my name to my picture. I like to think the squad and supervisor I flew with thought I was a good FAM, and that's what really matters. Don't get involved in the office drama. It always turns bad.

    - Be respectful of the senior FAMs in your office. 98% of them will be good people who can give you good pointers. As the new guy do things to show you appreciate them having more experience. Example 1: If you're flying an overnight on Veteran's Day and have former military FAMs are on your team take them out to dinner. Example 2: If you're invited to hang out with some recently retired FAMs in the area you're staying in, pay the bar tab for them. I'm not saying do this every trip, but you can sacrifice a day of per diem here and there to let these guys know you appreciate them. Like I said above, you're rarely in the office so if a more senior FAM says to your supervisor "oh so and so is a good person" it goes a long way.

    and this final tip (for now) is for if you think of this job as a stepping stone and want to use it to get to an 1811 gig.

    - In interviews don't talk about how terrible the job is. They don't care. Talk about your training, experiences with other cultures, navigating changes on the daily. They'll want to hear that more than "I can't take flying anymore". I enjoyed being a FAM so this wasn't hard for me.

    Also, please take the above tips as my experience and what I went through. Things may have changed and policies may be different. I'm no longer "on the inside" so I can't claim guru status.

    Everyone enjoy your Thanksgiving. As always feel free to ask questions, and I'll answer if I can.





    Comment


    • HiFlyR
      HiFlyR commented
      Editing a comment
      gkov First for pay. You won't be stuck at base pay. You'll go G for one year (it may be two years now), then H for one year, and then I in your third or fourth year. As long as you don't do anything stupid those are basically guaranteed. Once you hit I with your base, locality, LEAP, OT, etc you'll be well over $100k in salary. You can get within grade increases, but those are few and far between. Usually the more senior guys get them.

      As for "Unsecure Skies" I've never read the book. I've heard of it and what it entails so I have a little bit of a background. All I can say is I can only speak from my experience, and could never speak for another FAM. Everyone views the job differently, and everyone has different issues with it. I always say I enjoyed the job, but I also knew it was a stepping stone and I wasn't going to be there for the long haul.

      I've said this before and I'll say it again. It is what you make of it. Train hard, shoot well, show up on time, don't do anything stupid on foreign soil, and stay out of drama. It'll be the easiest 100k you'll ever make. I always say FAMs are high priced insurance policies. You pay a lot for the premium and may never use it, but if you ever need it, it'll be worth every penny spent.

    • KieranMc91
      KieranMc91 commented
      Editing a comment
      Very helpful advice. I'm waiting for my assessment call while trying to get into shape it's tough, but I wont stop trying. Thank you for the advice

    • gkov
      gkov commented
      Editing a comment
      HiFlyR thanks for your reply I appreciate it.

    • Macchi30
      Macchi30 commented
      Editing a comment
      How many days off do FAMs typically have a month? I was told by a FAM that the typical week is 5 days on, 2 days off. With overnights away all 5 days on. Is this true? It seems kind of strange to me. I know pilots get 11 days off a month, to compensate for all the overnights they do during their trips. I just can't imagine how someone could maintain a healthy lifestyle if they gone 5 days a week (especially with all the time zone travel) and only have 2 days off. Thanks

  • Decided to drop out of the process. Two kids under two means it’d be too rough. Good luck to everyone.

    Comment


    • Anthropologist
      Anthropologist commented
      Editing a comment
      Family comes first! Good luck with any other prospects!

    • gkov
      gkov commented
      Editing a comment
      Good luck brother!

    • Saluki89
      Saluki89 commented
      Editing a comment
      Sorry to hear but family is what is most important. I am having my first in a few months so I'm definitely going to be challenged if I am selected. Good luck brother.

  • Evening gents/ladies,

    I just wanted to share my experience so far with this recent hiring cycle as I've found some of your all's recent information to be quite helpful. Quick background, Military/private security/masters degree. For me, this process has gone by pretty quick... as opposed to CBP to which I applied back in February and I'm still in limbo in regards to the SI date. Seems CBP has taken a different route in handling Covid as I hear other agencies are business as usual, only with some minor delays in the hiring process.

    I applied back in October and didn't hear anything for about a month until I received an email stating I made the cut in regards to the application requirements. I scheduled the assessment almost immediately learning I had made the application cut. For all you waiting to take it, just tackle the study guide provided and you'll be good. I pass the assessment and select my FO on the TSA candidate dashboard. The very next day I get a call from the FO and set up my interview for early next month. However, I was told I'd receive an email with some coordinating instructions for the interview but haven't received one yet. Maybe someone who has can give me a timeframe on when to expect that interview verification email. Thank you. Now I do understand that other peoples timelines won't be as quick as mine, mainly due to Covid I'm sure. But nonetheless, I wanted to share with you all what's been going on with my hiring process.

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

    Comment


    • Hope everyone is doing well and had a good Thanksgiving. I just got contacted for my interview which will be later on this month.

      Comment


      • Anthropologist
        Anthropologist commented
        Editing a comment
        Congrats and good luck!

        I'm still waiting to be contacted about the interview.

      • jamesch20
        jamesch20 commented
        Editing a comment
        I did as well for January, seems to be moving along.

      • gkov
        gkov commented
        Editing a comment
        Did you receive the email with further instructions? I got called and scheduled, but I didn't get any emails.

      • A300!
        A300! commented
        Editing a comment
        I got the email later on that night.

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