I have Census 2020 job (GS-11), but received an offer for State Department (GS-9). Should I take the G-09?
Which work and which career path interest you the most? Which has the best likelihood of career growth for you (if you're interested in that)?
Don't worry about 'stepping back' in job level--if the step moves you toward a long-term goal. I've been in HR for 40+ years so can say that 90% of firms would either not care about that change in levels or would ask you about it--which gives you the chance to say 'it was an opportunity to jump into a career path I wanted to pursue'--or whatever the truth is.
Any question from a potential employer is a good thing: it gives you an opportunity to talk to them.
My suggestion is that you always want to have a job while you are looking for another position.
Having a job gives you the opportunity to take your time and pick your next position as opposed to "grabbing" something that happens to come along.
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