Architect (Design Manager)

Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations

Virginia, United States

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Oct 14

This job is no longer accepting applications.

Interested in making an impact on U.S. diplomacy around the world? #StateOBO is currently hiring an Architect (Design Manager) to join our Office of Design and Engineering in supporting the construction of safe, secure, and fully functional facilities at our diplomatic posts overseas.

Open and Close Dates: Oct 06, 2021 - Oct 19, 2021

The men and women of the US Department of State with their skills, character and commitment to public service, are the backbone of America's diplomacy. Personal Services Contractor employees support the foreign policy mission from offices in Washington, DC and worldwide. Join us in helping to shape a freer, more secure and prosperous world as we formulate, represent and implement US foreign policy. Choose from hundreds of career possibilities - there's something for everyone!


This position is located in OBO’s Program Development, Coordination and Support Directorate (PDCS), Office of Design and Engineering (DE), Architectural Design Division (AD). The contractor serves as an Architect (Design Manager) responsible the design, coordination, and management of OBO's construction and renovation programs.

Major Duties:

As an Architect (Design Manager) assigned to the Office of Design and Engineering Design Division (DE/AD), the contractor performs a wide range of expert-level architectural functions that support the construction of safe, secure, and fully functional facilities at overseas diplomatic posts throughout the world. The contractor coordinates technical requirements pertaining to the site selection, programming, design, construction, acquisition, repair and maintenance of United States Government (USG)-owned and operated buildings in foreign countries that house and accommodate personnel and programs of the Foreign Service and other USG agencies. In furtherance of these responsibilities, the contractor performs tasks and assignments that typically include, but are not necessarily limited to the following:  

  • Develops guidelines for specific construction projects; writes the Bureau’s standards and design criteria documents; negotiates with host country officials on matters pertaining to design approvals, construction permits, and zoning changes
  • Advises construction teams, and makes recommendations on change orders, design intent, and similar contractual matters; and participates in post-occupancy evaluation as a member of an interdisciplinary review team
  • Coordinates with other engineering offices on projects and with interior design groups regarding space planning, etc.; oversees review of drawings and specifications for life safety, adherence with applicable building codes and reconciles conflicts
  • Acts as an advisor to commissioned architects and as technical coordinator of projects for DOS; reviews designs for program conformity and technical sufficiency; guides designs to acceptable solutions and recommends approval or modifications
  • Serves as a resource in the evaluation/selection of new embassy sites; makes technical recommendations regarding suitability for use; prepares design studies indicating how sites may be utilized, and guides site selection teams in identifying sites

Contract Administration Responsibilities:

The contractor serves as a Contracting Officer's Representative (COR) for assigned projects, exerting control over the management of government funds in the design of overseas facilities, and assists the Contracting Officer (CO) in the administration of the contract. 

  • Plans, conducts, and/or directs conduct of initial architectural design studies or analyses aspects of design activities that may be contracted out;
  • Prepares or oversees preparation of statements of work and other documentation in support of proposed work to be contracted;
  • Evaluates contractor performance regarding adherence to contract terms, adherence to established milestones and deadlines, and quality of work; and
  • Provides technical assistance in pre- and post-bid activities, and participates in the analysis of bids for construction contracts;
  • Approves payment of government funds and authorized expenditures, accepts accountability for transfer of funds, procurements, and other financial-related decisions;

Who May Apply:

Job Status: Full-Time, Non-Permanent-Temporary Non-Status Position

Duration Appointment: 1 year renewable for 4 years.

Conditions of Employment: Must be able to obtain and maintain a Secret security clearance. Relocation expenses will NOT be paid. U.S. Citizenship is required. Overseas and Domestic travel may be required. Statement of Employment & Financial Interest required prior to appointment.

Basic Requirements:

A. Degree with architecture coursework - To be acceptable, the degree must be in architecture; or in a related field that included 60 semester hours of coursework in architecture or related disciplines of which at least (1) 30 semester hours were in architectural design, and (2) 6 semester hours were in each of the following: structural technology, properties of materials and methods of construction, and environmental control systems. (Please submit transcripts with your application.)


B. Combination of education and experience--college-level education, training, and/or technical experience that furnished (1) a thorough knowledge of the physical and mathematical sciences underlying professional architect, and (2) a good understanding, both theoretical and practical, of the architectural sciences. The adequacy of such background must be demonstrated by ONE of the following: 1. Related curriculum - Degree in architectural engineering may be accepted as satisfying in full the basic requirements provided the completed course work in architectural engineering provided knowledge, skills, and abilities substantially equivalent to those provided in the courses specified in paragraph A immediately above. (Please submit transcripts with your application.) 2. Experience - An applicant lacking a degree in architecture must have had l year of experience in an architect's office or in architectural work for each year short of graduation from a program of study in architecture. In the absence of college courses, 5 years of such experience is required. This experience must have demonstrated that the applicant has acquired a thorough knowledge of the fundamental principles and theories of professional architecture.


Applicants must meet all the required qualification requirements, including education, and any selective placement factors described below by the closing date of this announcement. Education may only be substituted in accordance with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Qualification Standards Handbook. Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order to be credited towards qualifications. Education completed in foreign colleges or universities may be used to meet the education requirements if you can show that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States. It is your responsibility to provide such evidence when applying. Click on the link for a list of accredited organizations recognized as specializing in interpretation of foreign education credentials.


IN ADDITION to meeting one of the basic qualifications requirements listed above, the applicant MUST have at least 1 full year of specialized architectural experience that has equipped them with the particular knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position. This experience is related to the work of the position and equivalent to at least the GS-13 level in the Federal service. Qualifying specialized experience must demonstrate the following:

***Experience in providing expert advice on practices of architecture combined with design development techniques.

***Experience in applying concepts, principles, and practices of architecture and related construction techniques and criteria.

***Experience in interpreting plans and specifications for a variety of complex building projects.

Note: All applicants MUST submit transcripts as verification of educational requirement by the closing date of this announcement. If you fail to provide requested information, or the information you submit is insufficient to verify your eligibility, you WILL lose consideration for this position.

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