What is the NIH job application process and timeline like?
July 24, 2014 3:14 PM   Subscribe

I'm a nurse practitioner in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps (4 years experience), and I'm applying for jobs at the National Institutes of Health. I've had one prompt and enthusiastic response, but I've heard nothing from the rest, so I have a few questions about NIH's hiring process and timeline.

So far, I have applied for seven NIH jobs, starting at the end of May. I "best qualified" for the first job that I applied for and interviewed there in a pretty quick timeline (two weeks after the job closed I was notified that my application was referred, and then I received an interview offer one week after that). They seemed interested in moving forward with hiring me, but I didn't feel it was the right fit, so I took my name out of consideration and have been waiting to hear back about the other jobs.

The closing dates for these other jobs range from June 3rd-June 24th. I can see in USAJOBS that I "best qualified" for three of the jobs. The other three say that my application was received but do not indicate if I qualified, or if my application was forwarded to the hiring official. So either I wasn't selected at all for those three jobs, or the HR departments are moving much more slowly in reviewing applications.

My questions are:
1. How long does the process take to be interviewed/hired for a job at NIH and how much does that vary by institute?
2. Can I reasonably expect that I am still under consideration for these other jobs? At what point should I assume that I am not?
3. Can the other institutes see that I didn't move ahead with the first job, and would that reflect negatively on me?
4. Will the status in USAJOBS change if my application was received but not referred to the hiring official?

If anyone has any prior experience with the USAJOBS/NIH process, hearing about that would be extremely helpful. Throwaway email at phs.nih.np.jobs@gmail.com
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (3 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Usajobs is awful. First advice - don't be humble. Second advice - make sure you check off everything on the job ad.
posted by k8t at 8:01 PM on July 24, 2014

Every hire is a little different. NIH doesn't stick to hiring process time limits like some agencies, so it can drag out pretty long if the selecting official lets it.

If you have a specific question... At the bottom of the job announcement there should be HR contact information. You can call them.
posted by zennie at 8:09 AM on July 25, 2014

The other institutes probably don't know about you turning down the other job, but it's not entirely impossible if the HR contacts on the different job announcements are the same people. (I have to say, some people at NIH believe they're doing you a huge favor allowing you to work for NIH.)
posted by zennie at 8:18 AM on July 25, 2014

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