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Employee Benefits and Balance

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Employee Benefits and Balance

As a Forest Service employee, you will have access to excellent benefits. Your work will be rewarding as you contribute to the Forest Service mission in a balanced work environment that values diversity, inclusion, and growth.

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Employee Services

Are you a USDA Forest Service Employee looking for quick access to common employee resources? Visit the employee services webpage to view all of the resources available to you. 


Your eligibility for each benefit depends on your position, length of employment, and other factors. These are examples of benefits that many employees take part in. Apply now and speak to the hiring official about which benefits may be available for the position that you're interested in.

Benefits to Help Maintain Balance

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  • Flexible Work Schedules and Family-Friendly Leave Policies: We understand that life happens, and that flexibility has tremendous value. 

  • Wellness and Fitness Programs: Some programs allow a certain number of paid work hours per week. Other programs may supply reimbursements for certain expenses like gym memberships up to a cap.

  • Telework Opportunities: Work from home for a certain number of hours.

  • 11 Paid Holidays: Spend time with loved ones instead of at work. Employees who must work on holidays may make extra!

    • New Year's Day (January 1).

    • Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Third Monday in January).

    • Washington's Birthday (Third Monday in February).

    • Memorial Day (Last Monday in May).

    • Juneteenth National Independence Day (June 19).

    • Independence Day (July 4).

    • Labor Day (First Monday in September).

    • Columbus Day (Second Monday in October).

    • Veterans Day (November 11).

    • Thanksgiving Day (Fourth Thursday in November).

    • Christmas Day (December 25).

  • Paid Vacation Time: Recharge without missing a paycheck. If are a full-time permanent employee and you have less than 3 years of federal service, you typically earn 4 hours of annual leave per pay period. There are 26 pay periods per year. Find the full list of how you can earn leave by visiting the Office of Personnel Management's Annual Leave webpage.

  • Paid Sick Time: Take care of yourself without worrying about the office.

  • Paid Parental Leave: Combined with the Family Medical and Leave Act, this benefit provides eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of paid leave for childbirth, adoption placement, or foster care placement.

Benefits for Planning and Support

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  • Employee Assistance Programs: These services can vary and generally include assessments, counseling, and referrals for personal and or work-related concerns, such as stress, financial issues, legal issues, family problems, office conflicts, and alcohol and substance use disorders. They also help management with advanced planning for situations, such as organizational changes, legal considerations, emergency planning, and response to unique traumatic events.

  • Health, Vision, and Dental Insurance Options: Choices change annually. 

  • Life Insurance: You pay two-thirds of the total cost, and the Government pays one-third. Your age does not affect the cost of Basic insurance.

  • Retirement: A three-part retirement program consisting of the Thrift Savings Program, a pension, and Social Security.

Benefits for Finances

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  • Awards: Our awards program allows supervisors to recognize employees who go above and beyond to positively affect the agency with their performance.

  • Flexible Spending Accounts: This special account saves you money by allowing you to set aside funds from your paycheck without paying taxes. You can then use that money to pay for certain out-of-pocket health care costs like deductibles, copayments, coinsurance, and some drugs.

  • Commuter Subsidies: Save money by using mass transit to commute to and from work. Eligible employees may receive a tax-free monthly benefit equal to commuting costs up to a capped amount.

Find Your Career and Apply Today!

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For questions about career opportunities and applications call 1-877-372-7248 (select Option 2 and follow the prompts). We're open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mountain Time and closed on all Federal holidays.

The USDA is an Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer