Administrative Law Judge (ALJ)


Congratulations to everyone who is invited to the ALJ Structured interview!

We are providing an excellent, expert and affordable ALJ Structured Interview Prep Service.
Two expert practice sessions for $580.00 ORDER HERE

We recommend our ALJ Writing Guide to review the 13 ALJ Competencies!
The guide includes good definitions and samples of the CCAR writing style!
You can order the ALJ Guide as an immediate download PDF or print book! $49.95! ORDER NOW

7/7/16: “Hi Nicole! I completed the Online Component last week and your webinar was invaluable! I followed your advice and prepared accomplishment narratives in advance using the CCAR Accomplishment Builder and it really made all of the difference.”
6/24/16: “Nicole – I have finished my ALJ Assessment and can tell you that your suggestions were right on point. Your suggested homework was essential to preparing me for the exam. “
4/3/16: “Nicole – I filed my ALJ application today and wanted you both to know how much I appreciate your assistance. The webinar was very informative and Nicole’s help was—well—absolutely incredible. I could never have properly drafted the resume and narratives without your help in such a short period of time. “
2/06/16: “Nicole sent me the new ALJ guide. It’s a GREAT resource! You did a GREAT job with it. I’m spending a significant amount of time on the 13 ALJ Competencies. I’m looking forward to your webinar. Thank you for the ongoing assistance with this daunting task.” –2016 ALJ applicant
Nicole: “To bring you up to date, after approx. 1.5 years, I was solicited by the OMHA to be an ALJ in [City 1] this week, counter offered and accepted appointment as ALJ for SSA in [City 2] today. Thank you!”
1/26/16: “Nicole, you created a resume for me in May 2014 (I got the job, thanks!). Is your company offering ALJ application assistance again this year? As I’m sure you’ve heard, OPM will be reopening testing within the next few months.”

The 2016 OPM ALJ Examination Services – For the Next Round!

The 2016 ALJ Exam announcement closed April 8, 2016.
SSA and OPM are working together to improve ALJ HIring.
Answer the Call to become an ALJ.
Basic Qualifications for ALJ

Veterans with Ten Point Preference can apply any time to the ALJ 2016 announcement.

Read more here.
If you are a Ten Point Preference Veteran Attorney with 7 years of Administrative / Litgiation experience we can help you with your initial ALJ application. Please contact us.

Competitive Examination:

Applicants who have cleared the preliminary qualifications screening (i.e., the experience and licensure requirements) also are required to successfully complete other components of the ALJ examination.  The purpose of these remaining components is to evaluate the competencies, or knowledge, skills, and abilities, essential to performing the work of an ALJ. These competencies include: Decision Making, Interpersonal Skills, Judicial Analysis, Judicial Decisiveness, Judicial Management, Judicial Temperament, Litigation and Courtroom Competence, Oral Communication, Problem Solving, Professionalism, Reasoning, Self-Management, and Writing.

The remaining assessment components of the examination for ALJ positions are listed below and further described in the section How You will be Evaluated, Basis for Rating:

Online Component:

Section 1 – Situational Judgment Test (SJT)
Section 2 – Writing Sample
Section 3 – Experience Assessment

Proctored Component:

Section 1 – Written Demonstration (WD)
Section 2 – Logic-Based Measurement Test (LBMT)

In-person Component:

Structured Interview (SI) – The Resume Place is offering Structured Interview Preparation services to help you with the interview practice! 

ALJ Structured Interview Prep with Audio Recording

Recommended for Executive Level, SES, SL, SE & ALJ candidates

Congratulations, if you are invited to the ALJ Structured interview! The Structured Interview is founded on the premise that recent past behavior is the best predictor of future performance in similar circumstances. A Structured Interview consists of carefully planned, job-related questions that are scored systematically to identify highly qualified job candidates. You will be scored on your Structured Interview based on your specific answers to the competency and situational questions.


An expert federal interview trainer will prepare you for this type of interview, giving you the insights and confidence you need. This service is conducted in person or by phone. Training is completed in two sessions (150 minutes, total). Your fee covers additional time needed for the instructor to review your resume, narratives, employer materials, and other documents as needed.

SESSION 1 – Prepare, recognize accomplishments and ALJ Competencies: The first session will focus upon the accomplishments and message that you want to present in your interview. The instructor will prepare a full set of questions for the second session, which will be a scored, mock Performance-Based Interview.

SESSION 2 – Practice with recording, feedback and tips to improve your stories and overall presentation: The second session will include individual question feedback, and tips on how to improve your overall presentation. The mock interview session and critique will be recorded and provided to you afterwards in mp3 format.

Specific topics include:

  • Understand the interview structure and the scoring process, which evaluates behavioral benchmarks
  • Discussion of the importance of the 13 ALJ Competencies
  • Create a framework for responding to questions such as “Tell us about yourself,” “What makes you a good applicant for this position?” and “Why do you want this job?”
  • Prepare 5 accomplishments to match 5 of the ALJ Competencies for your recorded practice session.
  • Map your accomplishments by leadership qualifications and/or other specialized competencies, and use a proven method for developing a narrative response to the interview questions
  • Connect your answers to the mission and strategic objectives of the organization
  • Learn a framework for responding to hypothetical questions
  • Practice your responses in a recorded mock interview, answering performance-based questions tailored expressly for you
  • Question-by- question critique plus an overall review of the mock interview, to gain insights for improving interview performance
  • Understand how to answer the unscored supplemental interview “fit” questions and follow post interview etiquette
  • Access your session recording after the second session, so that you can review your performance and improve your interview skills
  • Follow appropriate post interview etiquette

We need at least one week to schedule the two appointments for this service.

Fee: $580   Order now

ALJ Coaching and Editorial Team

  • Nicole Schultheis
  • Kathryn Troutman
  • John Gagnon

Nicole Schultheis has helped hundreds of attorneys and other senior candidates compete successfully for federal positions. In addition to Administrative Law Judge candidates, she has helped aspiring Administrative Judges, Hearing Officers, Immigration Judges and Administrative Patent Judges. She has supported legal and law enforcement candidates at the Department of Justice, FBI, ICE, CBP, DHS, U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Department of Defense, as well as applicants to numerous agency Offices of General Counsel, Inspectors General, and Legislative Counsel offices.


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