[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 206 (Friday, October 23, 2020)]
[Pages 67525-67526]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-23521]

[[Page 67525]]



 Patent and Trademark Office

Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the 
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Review and Approval; Comment 
Request; Patent Examiner Employment Application

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Department of 

ACTION: Notice of information collection; request for comment.


SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), in 
accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, invites comments 
on the extension and revision of an existing information collection: 
0651-0042 (Patent Examiner Employment Application). The purpose of this 
notice is to allow 60 days for public comment preceding submission of 
the information collection to OMB.

DATES: To ensure consideration, comments regarding this information 
collection must be received on or before December 22, 2020.

ADDRESSES:  Interested persons are invited to submit written comments 
by any of the following methods. Do not submit Confidential Business 
Information or otherwise sensitive or protected information:
     Email: [email protected]. Include ``0651-
0042 comment'' in the subject line of the message.
     Federal Rulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.
     Mail: Kimberly Hardy, Office of the Chief Administrative 
Officer, United States Patent and Trademark Office, P.O. Box 1450, 
Alexandria, VA 22313-1450.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Request for additional information 
should be directed to the attention of LaRita Jones, Chief of the 
Workforce Employment Division, Office of Human Resources, United States 
Patent and Trademark Office, P.O. Box 1450, Alexandria, VA 22313-1450; 
by telephone at 571-272-6196; or by email to [email protected]. 
Additional information about this information collection is also 
available at http://www.reginfo.gov under ``Information Collection 


I. Abstract

    USPTO engages in a robust marketing strategy that historically 
results in a high volume of applications from recent college graduates 
with engineering and science degrees for entry-level patent examiner 
positions. In FY2020, USPTO received 7,361 applications and ultimately 
hired 597 new patent examiners.
    USPTO uses the Monster Hiring Management (MHM) system to rapidly 
review applications for employment of entry-level patent examiners. The 
use of such automated online systems during recruitment allows USPTO to 
remain competitive, meet hiring goals, and fulfill the Agency's 
Congressional commitment to reduce the pendency rate for the 
examination of patent applications. Given the time sensitive hiring 
needs of the Patent Examining Corps, the MHM system provides increased 
speed and accuracy during the employment process.
    This information collection covers respondent data gathered through 
the MHM system. The MHM online application collects supplemental 
information to a candidate's USAJOBS application. This information 
assists USPTO Human Resource Specialists and Hiring Managers in 
determining whether an applicant possesses the basic qualification 
requirements for a patent examiner position. From the information 
collected, the MHM system creates an electronic real-time candidate 
inventory on applicants' expertise and technical knowledge, which 
allows USPTO to immediately review applications from multiple 
    The use of the MHM online application fully complies with 5 U.S.C. 
2301, which requires adequate public notice to assure open competition 
by guaranteeing that necessary employment information will be 
accessible and available to the public on inquiry. It is also fully 
compliant with Section 508 (29 U.S.C. 794(d)), which requires agencies 
to provide disabled employees and members of the public access to 
information that is comparable to the access available to others.

II. Method of Collection

    Items in this information collection must be submitted via online 
electronic submissions.

III. Data

    OMB Control Number: 0651-0042.
    Forms: None.
    Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved information 
    Affected Public: Individuals or households.
    Estimated Number of Respondents: 8,386 respondents per year.
    Estimated Number of Responses: 8,386 responses per year.
    Estimated Time per Response: The USPTO estimates that it will take 
the public approximately 30 minutes (0.5 hours) to complete the Patent 
Examiner Application Questions. This includes the time to gather the 
necessary information, respond to the MHM system prompts, and submit 
the completed request to the USPTO.
    Estimated Total Annual Respondent Burden Hours: 4,193 hours.
    Estimated Total Annual Respondent Hourly Cost Burden: $115,056.

                                                      Table 1--Total Hourly Burden for Respondents
                                                   Estimated        annual         Estimated time for        Estimated     Rate \1\ ($/      Estimated
      Item No.                  Item                annual         responses         response (hour)       annual burden       hour)       annual burden
                                                  respondents       (year)                                  (hour/year)
                      ........................  ..............             (a)  (b).....................     (a) x (b) =             (d)     (c) x (d) =
                                                                                                                     (c)                             (e)
1...................  Patent Examiner                    8,386           8,386  0.5 (30 minutes)........           4,193          $27.44        $115,056
                       Application Questions.
    Total...........  ........................           8,386           8,386  ........................           4,193  ..............         115,056

    Estimated Total Annual Non-Hour Respondent Cost Burden: $0. There 
are no filing fees or start-up, maintenance, recordkeeping, or postage 
costs associated with this information collection.

    \1\ USPTO is using the OPM Special Rate Table 0576--Patent 
Examiner 07-Step 1 as an estimate for the hourly rate: https://apps.opm.gov/SpecialRates/2020/Table057601012020.aspx.

IV. Request for Comments

    The USPTO is soliciting public comments to:

[[Page 67526]]

    (a) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is 
necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, 
including whether the information shall have practical utility;
    (b) Evaluate the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden of 
the proposed collection of information,including the validity of the 
methodology and assuptions used;
    (c) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to 
be collected; and
    (d) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those 
who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, 
electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or 
other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic 
submission of responses.
    All comments submitted in response to this notice are a matter of 
public record. USPTO will include or summarize each comment in the 
request to OMB to approve this information collection. Before including 
an address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying 
information in a comment, be aware that the entire comment--including 
personal identifying information--may be made publicly available at any 
time. While you may ask in your comment to withhold personal 
identifying information from public view, USPTO cannot guarantee that 
it will be able to do so.

Kimberly Hardy,
Information Collections Officer, Office of the Chief Administrative 
Officer, United States Patent and Trademark Office.
[FR Doc. 2020-23521 Filed 10-22-20; 8:45 am]