Thank You Email After Job Interview: Tips & Best Samples

By Hannah Morgan | Career Sherpa - Reprinted with permission

Is sending a thank you email after a job interview required? No. However, sending one will absolutely help you stand out or be remembered. In order to construct a thank you message that is meaningful and professional, you'll want to follow some basic guidelines and see some examples. That's what you'll find in this guide. Why You Should Send One. A thank you email after an interview makes a positive impression on hiring decision makers. Here's data to help you understand just how much a thank you note means. 68% of recruiters/hiring managers say a thank you email after the interview matters (Talent Inc.) And there's another reason to write a thank you after your interview. It's the polite thing to do. Sending someone a thank you may not...... Read more

You Asked, We Answered: What do I need to know about the Delta variant of COVID-19?

By VA Careers | VAntage Point Contributor © 2021, Reprinted with permission

VA is listening to your questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and this blog series answers your questions. Want to ask a question? Leave your comment below. I've heard about a new "Delta variant" of the virus that causes COVID-19. Is it dangerous? The Delta variant is a mutation of the virus that causes COVID-19. This variant spreads more easily and more quickly than others. It already has had a severe impact in other countries, such as India. Over the past month, the Delta variant has rapidly spread and expanded in the U.S. It could soon become the dominant virus strain. The good news is that the COVID-19 vaccines currently in use in the U.S. offer good protection against the COVID-19 variants we know most about. COVID-19 vaccines have shown excellent effectiveness in preventing hospitalizations and death.... Read more

How To Find Target Companies For Your Job Search

By Hannah Morgan | Career Sherpa - Reprinted with permission

If you are looking for resources to help you find target companies for your job search, you've come to the right place. You'll find lists, databases and tools to help identify potential employers. Conducting a proactive job search requires that you have a plan. Your job search plan needs to go beyond just spraying-and-praying your resume to hundreds of job postings. Instead, learn how to build a company list of top employers for your job search. If you talk to anyone who has ever been in sales you make have heard they have prospect lists or leads. These lists contain company and contact information for people who MAY be interested in the product or service they are promoting. In your case, you need a prospect list made up of target...... Read more

Job opportunity: Keep Veterans safe as a VA law enforcement officer

By VA Careers | VAntage Point Contributor © 2021, Reprinted with permission

Want to help Veterans receive reliable medical care in a safe environment as a member of the VA police force? This month, as part of our celebration of VHA's 75th anniversary, we're highlighting this critically needed occupation, which is near the top of our nonclinical career shortage list. Modern police force. Our 4,000-member team of officers, supervisory officers and detectives staff VA medical facilities throughout the country. "In VA law enforcement, you'll play a critical role in ensuring that Veterans receive the care they deserve as safely as possible," said Darren Sherrard, associate director of recruitment marketing. We are building a 21st century police force focused on transparency, accountability and efficiency. The ultimate goal of this modernization effort is to increase the safety and... Read more

Top Three Tasks When Applying for a Security Clearance

By Thomas Braden | U.S. Navy Vet and Author of A Veteran's Guide to Transition: Active Duty to Government Service

WHO NEEDS A SECURITY CLEARANCE? Any person who has worked or will work for an organization that requires access to restricted information more than likely has or will need a security clearance.... Read more

Independent Contractor - Real Value Enterprises - Sarasota - FL
Vibration Analyst - IVC Technologies - Lebanon - OH
C-13-21 Education Assistant - Georgia Public Broadcasting - Atlanta - GA
Government Account Representative - Carahsoft Technology Corporation - Reston - VA
Line Haul Driver CDL A - WSI Transport, Inc - Lebanon - TN
  • A Veteran's Guide to Transition: Active Duty to Government Service

Complete list of Partners

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Join the Cleared Careers team as we host a Washington D.C., Maryland, & Virginia Virtual Cleared Hiring Event. Employers will be hiring for their DMV area security clearance opportunities!
Online interviews will be conducted by hiring managers and recruiters via text chat or optional video.
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December 9, 2021 - Online 10 AM - 2 PM EST

Propel your career with CACI! We invite you to participate in our CACI's Foundational Intelligence Rapid Response (FIRR) Virtual Hiring Event to speak with our recruiting team and learn about our current opportunities located in Charlottesville, Virginia. When you register, you're signing up to have real-time conversations via chat room settings. We are hiring qualified candidates with a TS/SCI and a background aligning with one of our exciting opportunities. If you're ready to take the leap, we invite you to INVENT YOUR FUTURE with us!

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Thank You Email After Job Interview: Tips & Best Samples

By Hannah Morgan | Career Sherpa - Reprinted with permission

Why You Should Send One

A thank you email after an interview makes a positive impression on hiring decision makers. Here's data to help you understand just how much a thank you note means.

68% of recruiters/hiring managers say a thank you email after the interview matters (Talent Inc.)

And there's another reason to write a thank you after your interview. It's the polite thing to do.

Sending someone a thank you may not be a normal activity for you, but the interviewer did invest their time to meet with you and that is worthy of saying thanks. You are being polite and showing respect.

And there's one final reason to send a thank you. Your note provides you with one more opportunity, perhaps the last one, to remind the interviewer that you are very interested in the job and are indeed the right candidate.

Here are three points you want to address in the thank you letter you send after your interview:

  • Your interest in the role
  • Your fit with the company
  • The value you will deliver if hired

Additionally, sending a thank you helps make you memorable. Believe it or not, very few candidates send them!

When an organization interviews lots of people, it is very easy for them to mix candidates up or forget specifics. Your thank you helps remind them who you are!

How To Write A Thank You Email

As you craft your thank you email or note, keep in mind your format, formality of the language you use, and also summarize your key points concisely. You want to come across as professional, and following the recommendations below will help you accomplish this.

Format

Either use a business letter format (examples below) or if you are using email, be sure to include a meaningful subject line. You'll also want to include an email signature that has your contact information. Use appropriate spacing between paragraphs and use a professional font style with black text.

Greeting/Salutation

"Dear", "Hello", and "Hi" are ways of starting your thank you email. But which do you use? You probably wore a more formal outfit to your interview, so when you address the thank you it's best to keep it formal as well. "Dear" is more formal than "hello". And "hi" is too casual for a thank you email.

Next, you probably wonder if you should use the person's first name or should you use Mr./Ms. Last name? This is a bit trickier. While you want to show respect, you also have started to build a relationship.

Think back to the interview. How did the interviewer introduce themselves? Did they use their first and last name? That's one sign you could use it in your thank you. If the person you are interviewing with is very senior in the organization, you may also want to use the more formal Mr./Mrs Last Name.

Another option you could try is referring to them by their full name. This option is gender neutral and may be a more appropriate way to address your interviewer.

Content

Your post interview thank you email doesn't need to be long. In fact, three paragraphs are all you need. Here's what to put into each section and capture the attention of the reader, your interviewer.

Paragraph 1: The first paragraph should clearly explain why you are writing. And in this case, you are writing to say thank you for the job interview and the interviewer's time.

Paragraph 2: This section of your thank you explains how your specific skills are a match for the job. Using the information you gained from the interview, address several (3-5) of the top qualifications you match.

Consider including why each matching qualification will benefit the company or why you feel a qualification will be of value.

This might also be an opportunity to address any of your areas of weakness during the interview or to improve upon an answer you gave during the interview.

Paragraph 3: The final paragraph emphasizes your gratitude for the interview and opportunity to learn more about the role and organization. Add a final sentence that includes exactly when you will follow up based on the question and answer you got during the interview.

Email vs. Hard Copy

Deciding whether to email your thank you note or send a hard copy thank you letter through the mail isn't about which is easier for you. It's about the impression it will make on the recruiter or hiring manager. Keep in mind that email messages are shorter and considered a bit less formal. It's also easy to delete an email message, meaning it doesn't have the same tangible impact as a hard copy letter.

Another factor to consider when deciding to send your thank you through email or through regular mail is when the company plans to make a decision. (You should ask this question during the interview so you know when to follow up.) If the employer says they'll be making a decision within a day or so, emailing your thank you after the interview is the better option.

Sometimes candidates want to do both. And if you feel like that covers your bases, go for it.

Sending an email immediately following the interview checks the box for getting it done. Go ahead and send a short, well-crafted email thanking the interviewer(s) for their time and indicate that you have mailed them a letter as well.

Just remember, if you do decide to send both, your thank you letter sent through the mail shouldn't be exactly the same as the one you emailed.

Additional Tips & Advice

You can find lots of advice on how to write a thank you email after your interview, but it's important to remember that not all the advice will apply to you. However there is one rule everyone should follow...send it within 24 hours.

You'll find additional recommendations and tips to help you make the best decisions for sending a thank you based on your interview situation.

Everyone Gets A Thank You

Each person you interviewed with should receive a separate thank you email afterward. That's why it's important for you to ask each person for a business card either at the beginning or at the end of the interview.

If you realize you forgot to get their contact information, reach out to your point of contact at the company and ask for the information so you can send a proper thank-you note.

But never send a group "thank you" to everyone who interviewed you. Recall a specific question they asked or customize your message. For example, if you will be working at a peer level, your message might address how you look forward to working alongside them.

As uncommon as it sounds, the people who interviewed you may compare messages.

Send It Within 24 Hours

The best time to send your interview thank you email is while the whole event is still fresh in everyone's mind.

Sending an email within 24 hours allows you to refresh the interviewer's memory and remind them of your strengths.

A more tangible reminder would be to send a slightly modified typed or written note through the mail which means that the interviewer would receive it 2-5 days later.

Sending one or both is fine. But you do need to send it quickly while the company is still considering your candidacy!

Virtual and Phone Interviews Still Deserve A Thank You

Since so many interviews are taking place virtually (either on the phone or on video) you should know that a thank you email is still required. The interviewer still spent time explaining the role, their company and answering your questions.

Sending an email is probably the best way to ensure they see your thank you, as they may not be going into their office.

Handwritten vs. Typed

If you decide to send a hard copy in addition to your email, many career professionals suggest that it should be handwritten to add a personal touch. If you feel you can adequately convey all this information and have presentable handwriting, go ahead and write your thank you note.

However, few people will judge your candidacy based on your handwriting or the fact that you took the extra effort to handwrite a note. What is most important is the message your thank you contains. The decision to handwrite or type your thank you message is up to you. Use what seems most appropriate for your situation.

Bonus

To ensure your thank you email after the interview makes you look like the most qualified and interested candidate, keep these things in mind:

  • Check your writing for spelling and grammar errors
  • Pay special attention to the spelling of the person's name and company name
  • Use good quality thank you notes or paper if you are sending a hard copy
  • Customize your message and details for each and every interview and interviewer
  • Be as specific as possible when it comes to talking about how your skills and qualifications match the job, and why that is of value to the organization
  • Keep it professional and avoid mentioning personal details
  • Provide any information requested, such as references or samples of work, as soon as possible but in a separate email from your thank you.
  • Don't ask about salary, vacations or other benefits in your thank you note. Wait until you have another interview or a job offer before bringing these up if they haven't been discussed already.
Sample Thank You Emails

Personalizing your interview thank you email to address the unique circumstances of each interview is incredibly important. It shows that you were paying attention during the interview and that you are interested in the position with their company.

Here are examples to help you structure your unique follow up after the interview.

Sample #1 — Letter

Date

Name of interviewer
Job Title of interviewer
Company
Street Address
City, State Zip

Dear Ms./Mr. Last Name:

It was wonderful to have the opportunity to speak with you about the [job title] position with [company name], and I thank you. I know how limited a [role of interviewer] time can be, and your timely involvement in the interview process impressed me. After speaking with you, I felt certain that we can develop an effective working relationship.

After reflecting on our discussion, my conclusion is that you are looking for more than just another [job title]; it sounds like you are looking for someone who will pursue opportunities as if it were for their own business. Accountability and autonomy are ingrained in me, and I have the proven experience to back this up. I intend to use not only my dedication in this position but my persistent prospecting and interpersonal skills to convert potential customers into enthusiastic advocates of your service.

If you decide that I should interview with additional team members, I am available at your convenience. Until then, I look forward to the possibility of working with you. I thank you again for taking the time to meet with me.

Sincerely,

Sally Finkel
555.111.2222
sallyfinkel@zmail.com
www.linkin/in/sallyfinkel

Sample #2 — Note

Date of the letter

Dear [Mr./Ms Last Name],

I appreciate your time and the information you shared during our interview on [date] for the [job title] position. I am very interested in this job and in becoming a part of [organization name].

After our conversation, I am even more confident that this is a job I would enjoy, as well as one where I can be successful and make a valuable contribution. My experience as a [occupation/job title] where I [include an accomplishment or work-related process or procedure] would be a strong asset and allow me to have an immediate impact. I am particularly excited about [a particular challenge discussed or responsibility of the job] .

As you continue through the interview process, feel free to contact me If you have any questions. I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you, again, for your time.

Best regards,

[Your full name]
[Your phone number]
[Your email address]

Sample #3 — Email and Hard Copy Combination

Subject line: Thank you for the Project Manager interview

Hello Patricia Smith:

Thank you very much for taking the time to talk with me earlier today. Our conversation about the Project Manager role and ZYT Corps future initiatives was exciting and inspiring.

I feel my previous experience managing similar user experience projects and exceeding customer's expectations would make a valuable impact on the team and to the role. The job sounds exciting, and I think I would be an ideal candidate, thanks to years of experience managing projects with distributed teams.

Thank you again and I look forward to hearing from you after you've completed this week's interviews.

Regards,

Jennifer Jones
444-555-1212
jenniferjones@email.com
www.linkin/in/jennjones

Date

Name of interviewer
Job Title of interviewer
Company
Street Address
City, State Zip

Dear Patricia Smith,

Thank you for taking the time to speak with me about the Project Manager position today. As I mentioned in my email, I enjoyed our conversation and learning about some of the key initiatives ZYT Corporation is working on to enhance your users' online experience. Your commitment to your customers is refreshing and inspiring.

The future goals for the project management team fit very well with my background and my experience leading distributed teams. Additionally, in my last role, our team reconfigured our banking app to increase customer satisfaction by 10%. I strongly believe I could draw from my previous experience to make an immediate impact at ZYT.

Thank you again for your time. If there is any information I can provide that will help in your decision making, please feel free to reach out. I look forward to hearing from you about the next steps in the process.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Jones
jenniferjones@email.com
444-555-1212

Follow Up

When (not if) you don't hear from the company after sending your post interview thank you email, expect to follow up. Don't assume you are no longer in the running. There could be many reasons the company has gone silent. If you are truly interested in the job, follow up weekly until you receive a response. Be polite, respectful and understand that the company, recruiter or hiring manager is not purposefully being rude.

Filling a job often takes longer than anyone expects. Be prepared and persistent. But most importantly, always keep your job search active. Don't stop looking for new jobs until you've landed one!

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You Asked, We Answered: What do I need to know about the Delta variant of COVID-19?

By VA Careers | VAntage Point Contributor © 2021, Reprinted with permission

VA is listening to your questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and this blog series answers your questions. Want to ask a question? Leave your comment below.

I've heard about a new "Delta variant" of the virus that causes COVID-19. Is it dangerous?

The Delta variant is a mutation of the virus that causes COVID-19. This variant spreads more easily and more quickly than others. It already has had a severe impact in other countries, such as India. Over the past month, the Delta variant has rapidly spread and expanded in the U.S. It could soon become the dominant virus strain.

The good news is that the COVID-19 vaccines currently in use in the U.S. offer good protection against the COVID-19 variants we know most about. COVID-19 vaccines have shown excellent effectiveness in preventing hospitalizations and death. This includes the Delta strain.

The Delta variant most severely impacts those people not fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This includes people who only received the first dose of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine series, such as Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna.

How can I protect myself against the Delta variant?

You can best protect yourself against the Delta variant by becoming fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are continuing to study the Delta variant. They have concluded that COVID-19 vaccines offer good protection against COVID-19 variants.

Those who receive two-dose vaccines will be fully vaccinated two weeks after they receive their second dose. Two-dose vaccines include the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines. Those who receive single-dose vaccines like Johnson & Johnson's Janssen vaccine will be fully vaccinated two weeks after their dose.

VA will provide the second doses to employees, Veterans or anyone who qualifies under the Save Lives Act—such as spouses and caregivers— no matter where they received their first dose, if that is more convenient.

Will other variants like the Delta variant continue to spread in the future?

Viruses such as the Delta variant continue to mutate and spread as long as they have the ability to do so. The most effective means of slowing and stopping the spread of these variants is vaccination. When a large percentage of a community is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the virus will not be able to spread within it. This will also serve to decrease the development of new variants. Fully vaccinated people protect both themselves and their community against COVID-19 and similar variants.

Learn more

If you are undecided about getting the vaccine and need more information to make a decision, check out our Vaccine Questions page. The page includes videos, downloadable information and frequently asked questions.

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How To Find Target Companies For Your Job Search

By Hannah Morgan | Career Sherpa - Reprinted with permission

If you are looking for resources to help you find target companies for your job search, you've come to the right place. You'll find lists, databases and tools to help identify potential employers.

How To Find Target Companies For Your Job Search

Conducting a proactive job search requires that you have a plan.

Your job search plan needs to go beyond just spraying-and-praying your resume to hundreds of job postings.

Instead, learn how to build a company list of top employers for your job search.

If you talk to anyone who has ever been in sales you make have heard they have prospect lists or leads.

These lists contain company and contact information for people who MAY be interested in the product or service they are promoting.

In your case, you need a prospect list made up of target companies. These target companies could potentially need your skills or expertise.

How To Begin If You Don't Have Any Ideas?

This post won't help you if you don't have any thoughts or ideas on what you want to do next. Sorry. But you can read Transferring Your Skills to A New Career for help with that.

My guess is, you probably do have some idea of places you would like to work or a job or two you would be interested in.

Maybe you heard about a company in the news or have heard people rave about the company they work for. This is a starting point. You have to trust in the exploration process.

Also think about companies you are a customer of. How great would it be to work for them?

Best Company Lists

Every year, the following resources update their list of "best places to work" or "best companies to work for." Use each list to get you started:

  • Glassdoor.com's Best Places to Work
  • Fortune's 100 Best Companies to Work For
  • Search for "Top 100" and "Best Employer" lists for your city
Step 1:

Go through the list and identify 3-5 companies that sound interesting. You don't need to do a lot of outside research. Just read the write up.

Step 2:

What, if anything, do the companies you've selected have in common:

  • Industry
  • Number of employees
  • Geographic location
Step 3:

Find more companies that have similar qualities. How many more? It depends, but generally, you want at least 50 companies on your target list. To find more companies, use some of the databases and tools below.

I'm going to use a common example to help you see what you can do to expand your list of target companies.

Let's say you would love to work for Google because it is innovative, sounds like a good place to work and most importantly, they hire people who do what you do...technical writers, for example.

Your next question should be, what companies are similar to Google or do what Google does?

Databases

There are three popular company databases you can access at no cost. But in order to find similar companies, you have to use the fields available in the database. And the one thing you can assume would be a commonality or enable you to find similar companies is their industry.

D&B/Hoovers (only basic level information is free), Yahoo Finance and LinkedIn are just three of many resources to help you identify competitors or allow you to search by companies by industry.

I'll continue with the Google example:

D&B/Hoovers

Go to the Company Search page and enter the name of a company.

And while you are here, also notice the competitors listed (these are more companies to add to your list!)

Hoovers tags Google as being in these industries: Internet Search & Navigation Services, Professional Services Sector, Advertising & Marketing Services, Media, Internet Publishing, Broadcasting & Search Portals

These are industries you may want to research and find more potential target companies.

YAHOO FINANCE

In the "enter symbol page" (not in the top search bar) on Yahoo Finance, type the name of the company.

Yahoo Finance categorizes Google as Internet Information Providers

And here is the competitor information from Yahoo Finance (add these to your list)

LINKEDIN

Select the "company" search option from the search bar and type the company name.

Google lists themselves on LinkedIn as Internet

People who viewed Google also viewed these companies (consider them targets too!)

Now that you know the industry and some competitors, continue to look at those industry lists for more potential companies.

 

There Are More Company Databases

Now that you know what industry to research, you are ready to use it for your list building. You are looking for the names of companies that fall into the same or similar industry.

CareerOneStop Business Finder

This free database is a can provide good information when you finally get it. Start your search at the Business Finder page.

Enter the Business Name, Industry or Occupation or select a Zip Code.

Your Local Library Has Databases

There are lots of research tools out there, but if you are not a researcher by nature, I suggest you go to your library and ask for help researching companies within a specific industry.

Libraries also have access to databases you may not, such as Reference Solutions (formerly known as ReferenceUSA). As a member of the library, you have access to this database at no cost. And you may be able to access it from home.

Remember, librarians have a degree in research, do you?

Lists & Directories

Here are some other list resources for you to check out:

  • Your local Chamber of Commerce
  • Professional and Industry Associations

See what companies are sponsoring events or offering presentations.

Alumni Databases

Your college or university either has a database of alumni or a LinkedIn page you can use to help you identify popular companies alumni work for. If you aren't familiar with how LinkedIn's alumni pages work, check this article out.

Find Out About Small Companies

There is a growing trend, smaller companies are doing a bulk of the hiring. The thing is, smaller companies are harder to find. They don't have the marketing budget, they don't have the employee network, they are running lean and mean. So how do you find out about them? Here are places to check:

  • Recipients of Venture Capital funding.
  • Members of Chambers of Commerce
  • Professional associations
  • Local economic development site

If you really want to work for a small employer, I suggest you search all these resources. Plus, check your local newspaper regularly.

Use the Power of Google

You can search for companies using Google, for example:

"Best Marketing Companies in Detroit Michigan"

Also set up Google Alerts to increase your odds of finding out about new companies. Susan Joyce of Job-Hunt.org recently published a post on setting up Google Alerts!

Ask People You Know

Friends & Family

Friends and family members may LOVE their employer. But don't ask if they are hiring. Instead, ask if they like where they work and why.

Service Providers

You can also ask service providers (hairdressers, accountants, financial planners, mechanics) if they know about companies that are in your industry. You might say something like:

"Have you heard about any tech companies in the area?"

Past Co-Workers/Colleagues

Some of the people you used to work with may have moved on to other companies. Ask them the same question:

"Have you heard of any tech companies that are doing great things?"

Clients/Customers

Your past clients or customers, suppliers or vendors also have their finger on the pulse of what's happening in your industry. Ask them what companies they are watching.

DO NOT ELIMINATE COMPANIES YET

As you go through these lists and databases, you may have quite a long list. That's great.

Actually, it is better to have more companies than not enough. Focus on the top 10 first. Do some basic research and find the names of people you want to reach out to. But don't stop there. Keep researching the other companies on the list. You want this to be a broad outreach. (And you don't want to miss out on any opportunities that might be immediately available).

But, before you take a company off your list, have a reason for taking it off your list. Just because one person says they don't like the company or they have a few bad reviews doesn't necessarily mean it will be bad for you. Continue pursuing each company until you have solid information (or better yet, land a job interview).

Put It In Writing

List all the company names on a spreadsheet or even better on your marketing plan.

Your spreadsheet will help you keep track of:

  • Contacts you know at each company
  • People you want to meet at each company
  • Career page link
  • Jobs you applied for and status

With your list of top 10 companies, begin researching each one. The best research you can do will come from having conversations with people (multiple people) who work for the company or used to work for the company. That's your next step!

Don't Go Away...You're not done yet!

You aren't just looking at what jobs they have posted. They may not have anything listed.

Your next mission is to find people you can have an informational meeting with inside each of those 10 companies.

In order to do this, you need to identify who you know or are connected to inside the company. Here's how to find the names of people within target companies.

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Job opportunity: Keep Veterans safe as a VA law enforcement officer

By VA Careers | VAntage Point Contributor © 2021, Reprinted with permission

Want to help Veterans receive reliable medical care in a safe environment as a member of the VA police force?

This month, as part of our celebration of VHA's 75th anniversary, we're highlighting this critically needed occupation, which is near the top of our nonclinical career shortage list.

Modern police force

Our 4,000-member team of officers, supervisory officers and detectives staff VA medical facilities throughout the country.

"In VA law enforcement, you'll play a critical role in ensuring that Veterans receive the care they deserve as safely as possible," said Darren Sherrard, associate director of recruitment marketing.

We are building a 21st century police force focused on transparency, accountability and efficiency. The ultimate goal of this modernization effort is to increase the safety and security of Veterans, staff and visitors to our facilities.

VA police officers perform a range of duties. They intervene to de-escalate situations, as well as assess threats and take proper recourse, including taking statements, making arrests and conducting investigations. They also:

  • Ensure compliance with rules, regulations and procedures
  • Execute arrest warrants
  • Perform physical and personal security operations
  • Conduct patrols
  • Staff control desks
  • Coordinate with local courts
  • Participate in crime prevention activities

Law enforcement is an excellent career path for Veterans without health care training who are interested in helping other Veterans. Nearly 90% of our police officers are former military.

Enjoy the rewards

The biggest perk of working at VA is sharing in the rewarding mission of serving those who have served. We also offer a suite of excellent benefits, including:

  • Generous leave. Start earning vacation time on your very first day. You'll receive 13-26 days off per year, plus 10 paid federal holidays and 13 sick days. We also offer paid parental leave.
  • Comprehensive health care. You and your family will be taken care of with the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, offering the widest choice of health plans in the country.
  • Excellent retirement plan. Be ready for retirement with the Federal Employees Retirement System, a three-tier retirement plan that includes Social Security, the Thrift Savings Plan and a pension.
  • Educational assistance. Enjoy one of the most comprehensive education support programs around. Pay off debt with repayment and loan forgiveness programs, or further your education with a scholarship.
Work at VA

Step into a new VA law enforcement career, keeping Veterans, family members and visitors safe.

NOTE: Positions listed in this post were open at the time of publication. All current available positions are listed at USAJobs.gov.

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Top Three Tasks When Applying for a Security Clearance

By Thomas Braden | U.S. Navy Vet and Author of A Veteran's Guide to Transition: Active Duty to Government Service

As the result of Congressional legislation and Presidential Executive Orders, all federal positions which require a security clearance, have their background investigations completed by the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency (DCSA) in Quantico, VA. Their website is a wealth of information and is available, here: dcsa.mil

By all pre-COVID accounts, the federal government's reorganization of a variety of agencies and entities under DCSA's leadership has been a success. By streamlining and expediting the process, DCSA has reduced a huge backlog of almost 200,000 pending cases. Despite the many successes in this reorganization, the average processing time still exceeds 3-4 months.

So, what can you do to avoid delays in your processing? You can ensure the following:

Be organized

When you begin your background investigation and have to complete the perquisite SF-86 via the Electronic Questionnaires for Investigations Processing (e-QIP) system, you need to be well-organized. If you've done this before, the system may have retained your information. If not, you will be starting from scratch and need to have your facts in order. You will need to outline your entire family history including dates of birth and current addresses. That may sound easy, of course you know Mom's birthday... but what year? And you will even need to provide this information for your outlaws... I meant, in-laws and extended family (again, including place and date of birth and yes, dates of death, too.)

You will need to provide data reaching back as far as ten years, including addresses, foreign travel/contacts, etc. I recommend that you have a copy of your credit report on hand, as it will likely contain useful information. For each period of employment and/or residence, you will also need to provide a current U.S. based point of contact who can vouch for you during that time; such as a neighbor, co-worker or boss. You will need full names, as well as valid phone numbers and email addresses. This is time consuming and may involve some sleuthing on your part to track them down today. (You may want to find them on Facebook of Linked In and give them a head's up, as well.)

Also, men will be required to provide verification of their registration for the Selective Service (aka, "the draft.") Fortunately, you can look up your registration number: sss.gov/verify

Get finger-printed, properly

According to DCSA, the next biggest reason which causes delays in the completion of your background investigation is finger-printing. Yeah, this one surprised me as well, but it can be major hiccup in your processing. I had previously had a security clearance (with finger-prints on the record) for more than 25 years, but none of that mattered... I needed to get a new set of finger-prints and they needed to be collected electronically. Luckily, I was located near Washington, D.C. and was able to get this task completed on one of the military bases. If I wasn't retired (and therefore had access to the base), I'm not exactly sure how I would have completed this task. So, think that part through, you may need to be escorted onto a DoD installation, or you may need to find a civilian police station that is willing to do it. You'll also need to verify if your organization and level of clearance requires submission via the same DoD electronic system, or will they accept the tradition rolled/hard copy prints. I would certainly run these requirements to ground, early-on in the process with your Human Resources Office (HRO) and/or Security Office.

Be honest

Another reason which causes delays when completing your background investigation is extensive foreign travel and/or undisclosed foreign contacts, and foreign investments which the DCSA investigators will need to exert time and resources chasing down. If you've lived or served overseas, this can be an issue. You will need to provide all dates of foreign travel. I recommend checking your passport and Facebook, Instagram or other social media for pictures you or your family may have posted. (If you haven't lived overseas, this may sound ridiculous, but it's easy to forget that day trip across the border....) You will also need to identify if that travel was for work or pleasure. (At some point it gets compared to the actual travel they find with your passport; so, it's best if you include everything.) Lastly, you will need to disclose any foreign contacts that you had or maintained during those times. This could be your landlord, a co-worker, or your maid/gardener. My advice is to provide as much information as you possibly can; again, including any known contact information that you may have for these foreign contacts. If they're just that, casual acquaintances, you should be fine; however, if they're considered "close and/or continuous" you have to provide additional information. This is particularly true if your spouse is/was a foreign national and perhaps maintains a house or other foreign investment. So, be honest, be prepared and come to this process ready to disclose everything.

If you follow these rules

So, if I follow these three rules will I be guaranteed to obtain my security clearance?

No, there never any guarantees, but you should help in speeding up the timeline for DCSA to make an adjudication/determination.

The Adjudicative Guidelines for Determining Eligibility for Access to Classified Information are used by DoD Central Adjudication Facilities (DoDCAF) to determine both initial and continued eligibility for access to classified information. The adjudication process is an examination of a sufficient period of a person's life to make an affirmative determination that the person is an acceptable security risk. Eligibility for access to classified information is predicated upon the individual meeting these personnel security guidelines. The adjudication process is the careful weighing of a number of variables known as the whole-person concept. All available, reliable information about the person, past and present, favorable and unfavorable, is considered in reaching a clearance determination. When an individual's life history shows evidence of unreliability or untrustworthiness, questions arise whether the individual can be relied on and trusted to exercise the responsibility necessary for working in a secure environment where protection of classified information is paramount.

But if you follow the guidelines above: Be Organized; Get the finger-prints correct; and, Be Honest. You should be well on your way to a streamlined adjudication process.

I cover this - and so much more - in greater depth and detail throughout my book, A Veteran's Guide to Transition: Active Duty to Government Service, now available on Amazon for less than the cost of a cup of coffee, I might add! https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08Z83W9BK/

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