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We’re hiring: Technologists in Residence

What we’re looking for

We are seeking talented technologists to join us at the FTC. You will be part of a growing team of world class technologists and tech researchers who will help the FTC ensure a vibrant technology marketplace, by participating in agency law enforcement investigations, policy issues and research initiatives to help benefit consumers and promote competitions. We are committed to building a skilled team of technical experts that is reflective of the communities we serve and strongly encourage people of color, LGBTQ+ individuals, women, minorities, people with disabilities, system-impacted people, veterans, and people of all ages to apply.  Final selections will be made in accordance with federal merit principles. 

We are seeking a variety of candidates with high quality experience and subject matter expertise related to software and digital product development and the tech industry that produces it, including, but not limited to: advertising technology, artificial intelligence, augmented and virtual reality, cloud computing, data science and data analysis, digital platforms and ecosystems, human computer interaction design, investigative research, privacy, security, product management, prototyping, social science research or fieldwork, software engineering, user experience design and user research.

What you will do

At the FTC, you will be working on consumer protection or competition projects that are relevant to your specific area(s) of expertise.  

  1. Strengthen and support law enforcement investigations and actions. These duties include serving as an agency resource to support investigations into business practices and the technologies underlying them; developing appropriate investigative techniques and craft effective civil investigative demands; aiding in the review and analysis of data and documents received in investigations; supporting the development of case theories and analysis; and aiding in the creation of effective remedies. Where appropriate, technologists will also support litigation teams by, among other things, serving as or helping to identify external expert witnesses.
  2. Advise and engage with FTC staff and the Commission on policy and research initiatives. These duties include working on non-enforcement agency actions including 6(b) studies, reports, requests for information, research, policy statements, and policy deliverables. Technologists provide regular technical assistance for incoming Congressional bills and engage with Congressional staff via briefings in coordination with the FTC’s Office of Congressional Relations. They also provide strategic guidance on technology matters through report recommendations and participate in engagement with regulatory counterparts in partnership with the agency’s Office of International Affairs.
  3. Engage the public and relevant experts to understand trends and to advance the Commission’s work. These duties include proactively engaging with external stakeholders to identify emerging technologies that implicate the Commission’s consumer protection and competition mandates, and use these findings to advance the Commission’s work. This may entail running formal workshops, research conferences, and briefings or consultations. Technologists may also help to engage the public and relevant experts to highlight key trends and encourage best practices.

Technologists in Residence are senior technology and digital service subject matter experts, who have agency wide responsibility for accomplishing and coordinating a variety of duties related to technology related projects at the Federal Trade Commission.

Ideal candidates are experienced practitioners with

  • Technical expertise: You possess at least 1 year of specialized technical expertise in at least one of the following categories:

    • Software engineering 

    • Design 
    • Technology research and technology policy  
    • Product management and development 
  • Technical communication: You possess the ability to communicate complex technical concepts with non-technical audiences.  

  • Issue spotting abilities: You can identify and respond to current and next generation threats and demonstrate knowledge on a range of technology relate policy issues and technical matters relevant to the agency’s need. 

  • Skills flexibility: You can demonstrate an ability to translate technically complex issues and information and has a growth mindset with the ability to get up to speed quickly on complex technology topics. 

  • User focus: You can think about how technology can impact consumers, workers, and honest businesses and those affected by technology and digital markets. This means you have the ability to lead or contribute to investigative research and conduct in-depth user interviews and usability studies.  

  • Project management and execution: You are highly resourceful, resilient, reliable, and a detail-oriented self-starter and have strong interpersonal skills and demonstrated experience to deliver on projects and goals for successful outcomes. 

  • Systems thinking: You have a breadth of interest areas and have shown a capacity to adapt to a shifting environment and have a portfolio of multiple and diverse projects.  

Requirements:

  • Candidates must be U.S. citizens 

  • Candidates must be able to pass a background check 

  • Males born after December 31, 1959 must register with Selective Service. 

How to apply 

Please copy the email template below, modify text appropriately where highlighted, and send it to techjobs@ftc.gov. You can remove the “Notes to applicant” in italics. Please do not include any personally sensitive information (e.g., SSN or date of birth) in your submission or any information beyond what is requested below in the body of the email. 

Please copy the email template below and modify any text in brackets as appropriate  

---------------------------------------------------------------------- 

To: techjobs@ftc.gov 
Subject: Application for [Position Title] - [FirstName LastName] 

To whom it may concern, 
I am applying for the position of Technologist In Residence (TIR).

My resume is attached in PDF format.  
(Note to applicant: Please make sure to attach the resume in PDF format). 

I authorize the FTC to share my resume to other US Government agencies for similar roles who may reach out if interested. I know this is optional and all potential opportunities vary based on host agency.
(Note to candidate: This is meant to benefit you, the applicant. If you want to opt out of potential resume sharing, remove this line in your submission.)

My professional background is in;  
(Note to applicant: Choose the general area and expertise that apply from the list below and delete the rest). 

  • Software engineering (Modern development process, Architecture, and/or Security) 

  • Design (Modern design processes, Product design, and/or User research) 

  • Research / Policy (Public Policy/Tech Policy, Digital Markets, and/or SME domain mastery) 

  • Product (Product delivery, Product strategy, and/or Capacity building) 

  • Other: [Please insert area and relevant expertise up to 1-2 text lines maximum]. For example, “advertising technology expert,” or “social science researcher with a focus on social media and mental health.”

[Optional] - Attach Veterans' Preference documentation, if applicable (e.g., DD-214 Member Copy 4 showing type of discharge/character of service, SF-15 Form and related documentation, VA letter, etc.)(Note to applicant: Please attach relevant documents to this email). 

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Do I need a federal resume?

While resumes are typically in a different format for government jobs, we try to find a middle ground between private sector norms and the federal government. You should prepare your resume to be a bit more narrative than what you may be accustomed to — tell the story and detailed accomplishments of your work. For example, don’t just list your tech stack or design approaches, but say what you did with them and what the outcomes were. We want to be sure we capture your full breadth and depth of experience right away as we consider you through the application process.

For more guidance on writing a federal resume please visit: https://www.usajobs.gov/help/faq/application/documents/resume/what-to-include/.

Term Limited Appointment and Salary 

If you are eligible and selected, your appointment to the FTC will be on a full-time basis for up to two years, with possible extension for an additional two years; which yields a total of up to four years if approved. Service under this time-limited appointment confers no rights to further Federal employment in either the competitive or excepted service upon expiration of appointment. Further, appointees cannot be converted to another appointment if a total of four years under this Program has been served. 

Annual salary will be set at a level consistent with your experience.  Your salary will not exceed $183,500.

Reasonable Accommodation 

The FTC provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Candidates requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process should contact the FTC’s Disability Program Manager, Adam Mahan, at amahan@ftc.gov. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.   

Workplace Flexibilities 

Candidates may be eligible for workplace flexibilities, such as telework, remote work, and alternative work schedules as determined by their supervisor and consistent with agency policy.  

Privacy Act Statement 

The information you submit will be used to evaluate your qualifications for a federal job as a technologist, which is authorized by 5 U.S.C. § 1104 and 5 C.F.R. § 213.3102(r). Our request for DD 214 Form “Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty” is authorized by the Veterans' Preference Act of 1944, as amended, and 5 U.S.C. § 2018a. What you choose to provide is voluntary but we cannot fully consider your application unless we receive the requested information.  This information may be disclosed to a source from which additional information is requested by the Commission when necessary to obtain information relevant to an agency decision concerning hiring or retaining an employee, issuing a security clearance, conducting a security or suitability investigation of an individual, or classifying positions.  A complete list of the routine uses can be found in the Privacy Act systems for Employment Application-Related Records (FTC-II-4) and for Recruiting, Examining, and Placement Records (OPM/GOVT-5).  

Other opportunities to use your technical expertise in government

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Use your technical expertise to help detect and prevent unfair, deceptive, and abusive practices in financial markets. CFPB’s mission demands smart, usable, and reliable technology and technologists. The CFPB offers two tracks (a ‘Protecting consumers through investigatory and policy work’ track and a ‘Supporting the operational needs of the mission’ track) for skilled technologists who are passionate about using their skills to ensure consumer financial services are fair, transparent, and competitive. We regularly seek technical experts to join our team. Join our mailing list to be notified when jobs are available. 

Tech to Gov

On Tuesday, October 24th, 2023, Tech to Gov is hosting a National Forum and Job Fair. This virtual National event  is for technologists, from individual contributors to executives, looking to transition to the public interest tech field featuring dozens of participating governments and organizations at the Federal, State, and local level including fellowship programs.Tech to Gov will be hosting this event in partnership with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. Register today- space will be limited .

Coding it Forward

If you are a technologist early in your career and looking for a summer program to gain more exposure to tech and public service, check out the Coding if Forward fellowship program. Coding it Forward’s Fellowship is a paid, 10-week summer opportunity for early-career technologists. Fellows work across cybersecurity, data, design, product, and software to build a more equitable and effective government for all. Applications will be accepted from October 16 – 29, 2023. Learn more about the Coding it Forward Fellowship .