General Career Information

Career Mobility

There are opportunities at various locations across the United States, including Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Generally, employees are expected to complete, at a minimum, a 12-month probationary period before applications for reassignment or promotion will be considered.

Promotion Potential

All employees are required and expected to fully demonstrate their suitability for prison work in the position to which they are initially appointed. Before they are considered for promotion or advancement into other lines of work, an acceptable performance evaluation is required. While it may be the practice of the Federal Bureau of Prisons to fill vacancies internally if at all possible, no positive assurance of advancement can be given to employees. The length of the waiting period for such advancement cannot be estimated. Each employee is in competition with others who are similarly qualified. Selections are made from those individuals considered best qualified based on their knowledge, skills, and abilities.

Probationary Period

Each new permanent employee who receives a career or career conditional appointment, serves a one-year probationary period immediately following his or her appointment. This period is used to determine the qualifications of the employee for continued employment. During this time, the supervisor monitors and provides guidance to the employee. For continued employment, the supervisor must favorably evaluate the performance and conduct of the employee. This time period also helps employees determine whether the work is compatible with their skills and aspirations. In addition, each new permanent employee who receives an excepted service appointment, including appointments which can be converted to permanent positions (i.e., Veteran's Recruitment Appointments ([VRAs]), serves a one-year probationary period immediately following his or her appointment.

Work Schedule

Since institutions must operate around the clock, the day is divided into three work shifts of eight hours each. Employees rotate posts, days off, and shifts. All employees are "correctional workers first," regardless of the specific position to which an individual is hired (secretary, nurse, plumber, teacher, doctor, dentist, etc.). As correctional workers, staff may be called to work correctional posts at any time in emergency situations or as necessary.

Other Information

The Department of Justice provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the hiring/servicing personnel office. The decision of granting a reasonable accommodation will be on a case-by-case basis. Selection will be made without discrimination for any non-merit reason such as race, color, religion, national origin, age, physical disability, marital and/or parental status, membership in an employee organization, sex, or sexual orientation. The Bureau of Prisons is an equal opportunity employer.