Questions about application for the VA

  1. [FONT='book antiqua']Hello! I have a few questions about applying for the VA if anyone has any insight. My apologies ahead of time if some of these seem dumb.

    1. Do I need a professional biography? Or what is that? I did some looking around but can't seem to find a firm answer.

    2. References: It says to list people who have been in a position to judge your professional qualifications during the past five years. OK - I have not worked as a nurse since 2005. It doesn't specifically say they have to be nursing references so will people I currently work with (in law enforcement) suffice?

    2a. I would assume these are normal questions asked of references: how long you've known this person, their strengths/weaknesses, etc?

    3. What exactly is Vetpro and what do I have to do for that? The initial application seems really short.

    4. For the nursing experience (from 2003 to 2005) I'm not sure I remember the nurse manager's name or how I could even find that out (and for 2 of the jobs they are no longer employed with the hospital). It says to provide name and title of director of nursing or of other department where assigned. If I can't find their names will the department be OK?

    5. I've read some previous posts about going in person to inquire about jobs. Is this a good idea? The closest VA to me is about an hour away. Should I still apply on line?

    6. I've been putting off applying bc I have a 4 week commitment in June/July that I'll be out-of-state but I noticed on the application it says date available for employment. Should I go ahead and apply for jobs now and list my start date in July? I know the whole application process can take a while.

    I'm sure I'll have more questions but this will get me started. I am just so nervous about going through all the ups and downs of job hunting! But I finally got my RN license and am really excited to get back into nursing. I'd like to work for the VA or find a federal job (VA most of all). And have to find the hubby a new job too. He's ready to retire from law enforcement after 20 years but has no clue what he wants to do when he grows up. ;-)

    Thanks for your help!

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    About nursetaminator, RN

    Joined: Jul '07; Posts: 145; Likes: 86
    from US


  3. by   CaliBoy760
    See this thread:VA Hiring Process
  4. by   nursetaminator
    Thank you! Yes I've seen that thread.

    Got my questions answered from a friend who'd applied with them before.
  5. by   Marshall1
    I'll try to answer everything here but you are welcome to PM me. First, going to the VA about the position is a waste of time. You can only apply through the USAJOBS - The Federal Government’s Official Jobs Site web site. Make SURE you submit EVERYTHING that applied to you in the description. This will include a copy of your transcipt - at this point it does not have to be official - most colleges you can go online and d-load a copy of your own to attach. All you need is a resume - which I guess would be the same thing as a professional biography. It can take weeks or months, to hear anything. If you are granted an interview you will provide references to the hiring manager then. If the hiring manager wants to move forth, this is where the real fun will have to have official transcripts sent to the HR dept. You will be fingerprinted and given a full physical. Once you pass this you will be given access to VETPRO. This is a background takes time to complete - 1-2 hrs - and nothing can be left blank or skipped. If you haven't worked for a period of time it will ask this, ask why and who can verify you were unemployed. VETPRO also will ask for references. You have to have 3 respond so place more on the site. Depending on this getting VETPRO taken care of can take 1-2 months. After all this is completed, you will be offered the position w/salary or hourly rate. This is not discussed at the interview because the nursing board for the VA meets, looks at each nurse, experience, degrees, certifications etc and your salary is determined from there. After you are offered the job you are scheduled for orientation. It last 1-2 weeks. Shortly before orientation you will complete something called E-qip, which is very much like VETPRO but only goes back 5 years. Nurse for the VA are on probation for 2 years. Reimbursement for travel, overnight accommodations are offered to some employees depending on where you live etc. It's a LONG process and many people give up or end up taking other jobs because they can't wait. When I applied in Nov. I was interviewed in Dec. Went through the VETPRO, physical in Jan. and started in March. You can always apply, get the process rolling and if offered the position, let them know you can't start until whatever date. Don't think it would be a problem.
  6. by   nursetaminator
    Thank you for the info! I started filling out my application today. Glad to know going to the VA directly isn't necessary. Guess I'm fortunate I'm not in a pinch to change jobs and can wait out the long process. It will all be worth it in the end!