Contractor Background Investigative Work is Slowing Down

Originally published at:

The Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency now conducts 95% of the background investigations for the Federal Government using a mix of federal employee investigators and contractor companies who are designated investigative service providers. The ratio of federal investigators to contractor investigators stands is hard to distinguish because DCSA ramped up the number of federal investigators…

With Continuous vetting, cases with no issues will not be assigned to CIs (Contract Investigators).

“more investigative analysts are needed to review hits that pop up on credit reports, arrest reports, drug tests, travel records and other sources”

So reading in between the lines, with Continuous Vetting, only the difficult cases that need full issue resolution to address problems are going to be assigned to CIs. Gone are the days where an “easy” case that takes 4 hours will offset a difficult case that takes 12 hours. All with the same pay. It’s going to be difficult to operate a business as a CI and make any kind of profit spending all your time only doing difficult cases.

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I’m not sure this quote from the article is accurate, “investigators are hired on as independent consultants, not as company employees.” I know that myself and hundreds of my Perspecta coworkers are indeed Perspecta employees with full health benefits, matching 401k, and occasional stock awards. Perspecta also has independent consultants but a majority of us are employees.

The article is saying that current hiring by the companies is for independents, not employees.

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That statement is untrue. There are multiple job listing on the Perpecta website right now advertising DCSA employee investigator jobs. They are hiring employees in dense population areas right now.

Let’s just agree that you are both right, there are companies hiring directly as well as independent contractors.


My concern was the article made all the listed contractor companies sound like they were only looking to hire expendable cheap “self employed independent contractors” because these companies didn’t want to reduce their profits by hiring expensive direct employees with benefits and employment protections. I have not found that to be the case.

I was referring to the article’s second paragraph - not trying to make a statement.

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In California, Independent Contractors are a thing of the past due to AB5 which was passed into law in January. Other states are considering similar laws.

Really? What states are considering eliminating IC’s?

Like CA, MA and NJ use a strict ABC classification test. Both MA and NJ, as well as WA, OR, MI, KY have legislation introduced in 2020 to adopt stricter ABC determinations. If you want to learn more, just Google ABC laws regarding Independent contractors. CA is the only state that has enforced the law, as far as I know. As you may or may not know, certain industries have gotten exemptions from AB5. Sadly, not Background Investigators. We need a lobbyist!

That’s not true… I’m still with 1FORCE as an independent contractor

Right. As you know, 1Force runs ICs as a referral/staffing agency. Per AB5’s ABC test, the IC does not perform the same duties as 1Force, and so the B part of the test is not strictly met. So far this has worked for 1Force and hopefully it will continue to work. It’s a crazy law with too many loopholes and exemptions. I’m not an expert in AB5 by any means, but I spent a considerable amount of time writing letters to politicians to express my concerns and learned a lot along the way.

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Some of the companies that operate in CA converted their independent contractors into Zero Hour employees a few years ago after losing a lawsuit. It’s a sweet deal for the ZHE and 1Force is consistently trying to get them to give up their seemingly sweet status.