U.S. Department of Commerce - Office of the Secretary U.S. Department of commerce seal

Careers at Commerce banner

Home > Careers at Commerce > SES & Senior Professional Opportunities

Senior Professional Positions

Printable View

Senior Level Positions (SL)

The SL pay system was established under the Federal Employees Pay Comparability Act of 1990 (FEPCA) to replace grades GS-16, 17, and 18 of the General Schedule. Positions in the SL system are classified above GS-15, but do not meet the executive criteria characteristic of the SES, nor do they involve the fundamental research and development responsibilities that are characteristic of the ST pay system. SL positions may be in either the competitive or excepted service. For additional information on SL positions, see page 6 of the “Guide to Executive Service.”

Scientific and Professional Positions (ST)

Positions that are classifiable above the GS-15 level, but do not meet the SES functional criteria, are appropriately placed in the ST system if they involve performance of high-level research and development in the physical, biological, medical, or engineering sciences, or a closely-related field. ST positions are established under 5 U.S. C. 3104. All ST positions are in the competitive service. Additional information on ST positions is available on page 7 of the “Guide to Executive Service.”