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Homeland Security

What to Expect After You Apply

Outline of process

After you submit your application, you will be scored to determine whether you are a top candidate for the position. If you are a top candidate, you will be contacted by the human resource (HR) specialist or program manager and asked to submit additional materials or invited to interview to help them further determine if you are the right fit.

Points of contact

Please keep in mind that you may be contacted by different people within the Department of Homeland Security over the course of the hiring process. There are usually two key players: the hiring manager, who is usually the new employee's supervisor, and the HR specialist. The HR specialist may set up interviews, request additional materials, and guide you through the hiring process. The hiring manager often conducts the interviews and makes decisions about alternate work schedules, vacation time, and telework arrangements, etc.

Security clearance

Once you make it through the application review process, you may receive a tentative job offer. If you accept the tentative job offer, you must receive a security clearance before you can receive your official offer. Security clearance screening takes an average of three months to complete, but the process can vary from two weeks to one year, depending on the level of security clearance required and a variety of factors (e.g., if a candidate has spent a significant amount of time overseas or has dual citizenship, the clearance process may take longer). For most Department of Homeland Security jobs, an employee cannot start until a clearance has been received.

Starting your job at the Department

Once you clear security, you will receive an official job offer and start date. Your first few months at the Department will include orientation sessions and training. Welcome to the Department of Homeland Security!

Last Published Date: February 21, 2014
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