As you prep your application and polish your resume, it pays to keep in mind what our recruiters are looking for as they consider you for a VA career.

Recruiters know that employees and candidates vary widely in their knowledge, skills, abilities, interests, work styles and more. These differences affect the way you’ll perform or behave on the job and if you would be a good fit for a team.

Consider the three E’s that could be crucial when it comes to your qualifications.


What you have done in your career tells volumes about the kind of worker you are and the kind of employee you’ll be at VA. Whether you’re a Veteran stepping into civilian life or a health care expert looking for a change, the things that you’ve accomplished will tell our recruiters a lot about who you are and what you hope to achieve.

On your resume, showcase your previous work experience in clear, concise language. Use those summaries to tell our recruiters specifically what you brought to the table, rather than just outlining what someone with that job should do. It’s a key difference that can highlight your unique qualifications for a role at VA.

“Take the time and sell yourself,” explained Kendra Wilson-Hudson, a physician recruitment consultant with the VA National Recruitment Service, during a recent “Talk About It Tuesday” broadcast. “Don’t sell yourself short, but sell yourself so that people will realize you are the crème de la crème; you are the unicorn in the room; and that you deserve to be at the top and interview for a position.”


You may have had a teacher in school that asked you to “show what you know,” and when it comes to your resume, highlighting your education is an absolute must.

Especially crucial for recent graduates, providing a detailed summary of your studies can help show you have the knowledge and training for a VA career.

Your education doesn’t have to be limited to college either. Continuing education efforts, like program certifications and training programs, are very important. We want to know what you know, so don’t forget to include the work you’ve done since starting your career.


Here’s something you might not consider: your enthusiasm for a job can absolutely make a difference when our recruiters start selecting candidates for interviews. Your application tells them you’re interested in the job, and your resume can tell us a lot about your work, but the best way to show your enthusiasm is in your cover letter.

The mission of VA is to serve Veterans, and our employees frequently share that it is the greatest mission in all of health care. We need people who want to help Veterans get the care they need and deserve, people who know the value of what Veterans have done for our country. Enthusiasm for our mission is a great indicator that you could be the right candidate.

Our friends at Indeed captured this part of our message perfectly as part of their interview tips for VA jobs: “Many VA employees will work directly with former military and their family members. Consider showing your passion and interpersonal skills by showing your enthusiasm for the role.”

Work at VA

We’ve actually got one more E word: evidence. Provide us evidence that you’re the best candidate for the job — and you’ll be one step closer to landing an interview and beginning your VA career.

By VA Careers

Share this story

Published on Jan. 14, 2022

Estimated reading time is 3.1 min.

Views to date: 3,846

More Stories

  • As an experienced professional, do you know what you want from your next career? When you begin your job search, consider these important points.

  • Join our recruiters for three events this October and learn what a career at VA has to offer.

  • With investments in a diverse workforce and leadership, our sense of inclusion equals innovation for the Veterans we serve.