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Security Clearance Hiring Trends

Information on the cleared population, processing times, background investigations, and cleared hiring trends.

SUPPLY AND DEMAND

Growth Rate of Cleared DoD Population and Jobs Posted on ClearanceJobs

Hiring_Trends_Jobs_Candidates_2022

DOD CLEARED CANDIDATES IN CIRCULATION

Active military (1.4M), NISP contractors (1M), National Guard, Reservists and DoD civilians are included in the numbers. Source: Performance.gov - FY2022 Q3

Hiring_Trends_Cleared_Pop_2022

Eligible – In Access: Individuals who have a security clearance AND are currently using it to access classified information for their job.

Eligible – No Access: Individuals who have a security clearance but are not currently using it to access classified information. Due to retirement, unemployment, or employed in a non-cleared role.

BACKGROUND INVESTIGATION TIMES ARE IMPROVING DRAMATICALLY

Average Processing Times for DOD/Industry Clearances

Secret

Top Secret

Secret

FY 2020: Q4
107 days
FY 2021: Q4
112 days
FY 2022: Q4
95 days

Top Secret

FY 2020: Q4
136 days
FY 2021: Q4
181 days
FY 2022: Q4
121 days

WHAT RECRUITERS ARE SAYING

Feedback on how the competitive security-cleared marketplace affects hiring. 

Want to Learn More About The Security-Cleared Recruiting Environment?
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THE SECURITY-CLEARED MARKETPLACE UNDER PRESSURE

Changing perceptions in the workforce, low unemployment, and ongoing issues with lengthy clearance processing times have yielded the most challenging hiring environment ever for security-cleared employers.

Recruiters and hiring managers are under pressure, having to prove their own worth in a marketplace where fewer hires and increased costs are now the norm.

Over the last few years, we've seen large shifts in our government's personnel security program and security process itself. Mr. Phalen discusses the security clearance marketplace, top security workforce concerns, and policy updates.

 

REFERENCES

ClearanceJobs collects stats and information from a variety of Federal sources. The most recent information that is publicly available will always be posted here.

Questions and answers related to U.S. Government security clearances, including those administered under the National Industrial Security Program (NISP), have been compiled by ClearanceJobs on our Security Clearance FAQ page


Insider Threat and Security Clearance Reform progress update issued by The Performance Accountability Council’s Program Management Office. The report tracks progress on mitigating the inherent risks and vulnerabilities posed by personnel with trusted access to government information, facilities, systems, and other personnel.

Annual Report on Security Clearance Determinations report issued by The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI). The report includes data on the number of cleared employees and contractors, as well as current security clearance processing times. 2017 is the most recent information publicly available. 

The Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO) issues an annual report to the President on the status of the security classification programs in both Government and industry. 2019 is the most recent publicly available information.

National Background Investigations Bureau (NBIB) Updates includes data on the timeliness performance for submission, investigation, and adjudication processing times for DoD Industry, DoE and NRC.

Diversity in the Intelligence Community Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) Demographic Reports - Statistics on Hiring and Retention of Minorities, Women, and Persons with Disabilities in the United States Intelligence Community.