For the second time this year, the New York District hosted a two-day Career Fair in Lower Manhattan for college students, recent graduates and other professionals to fill positions in a variety of disciplines.
To speed the hiring process, New York District used the Direct-Hire Authority provided through the federal government’s Office of Personnel Management. This authority, when granted, is designed to fill vacancies for critical hiring needs, hard-to-fill positions, and when there’s a severe shortage of candidates. It saves time by waiving some steps in the hiring process and fast-tracking offers of employment for qualified applicants.
Planning & Coordination
Prior to the event, a nine-member multi-disciplinary Project Delivery Team chaired by Michael Brantley, knowledge management specialist, Mission Support Office; Mathieu Rollack, director, Civilian Personnel Advisory Center; and Shanika Burt, human resources specialist, spent several weeks planning and reaching out to area colleges. This is in direct contrast with the District’s usual outreach attending off-site college fairs and providing information about potential opportunities.
Prior to meeting with Army Corps personnel and interviewing with hiring managers, attendees were provided an overview of the District and its operations by Deputy Commander Lt. Col. Richard Gussenhoven and Joseph Seebode, chief, Programs and Project Management Division. Gussenhoven encouraged participants to speak with personnel outside their area of expertise to learn more about the vast scale and breadth of New York District projects. The District’s jurisdiction includes the five boroughs of New York City, Long Island, and parts of upstate New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont.
The focus was STEM positions (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) and hard-to-fill vacancies. Job offers were extended to several candidates, and others were considered for employment. “This event was a big success for the District,” said Michael Brantley of the Mission Support Office, adding, “It was an efficient means to help meet our staffing needs.”
Evaluations & Feedback
The success of the event was evidenced by positive feedback on evaluations. A sampling of comments included: “I met with dynamic employees at the real estate table that provided a great overview;” “Different opportunities and friendly people;” “very organized and accessible;” “personal atmosphere made me feel comfortable;” and “quick, easy and organized.”
The effort pulled together hiring managers, support staff, agency information and interview set-ups to efficiently identify qualified candidates. Hiring managers from Construction, Operations, Planning, Engineering, Real Estate, Office of Counsel and Projects and Program Management Division participated.