Office of the Chief Information Officer

United States Department of Agriculture

Departmental Regulation 4030-337-002

Office of Human Resources Management

Category Rating


This directive establishes the Department of Agriculture’s policy on the use of Category Rating. Category rating is a method of evaluating applicants under the Department’s existing Delegated Examining authority and as prescribed in the Office of Personnel Management’s Delegated Examining Operations Handbook.
The purpose of category rating is to increase the number of qualified applicants from which to choose while preserving veterans’ preference rights. Applicants with similar levels of job-related competencies are placed into the appropriate quality categories, and selection is made from the highest quality category.