Non-DCSA Contract Work

I’m a 1099 on the DCSA contract. How is the workload on other contracts like CBP, ICE, and the rest? Is there enough work to move to those contracts or should I start to look for another job? Any thoughts or advice anyone?

It depends on where you live. You could stay busy for weeks at a time. But even the non DCSA work is all part time work for the most part and work is sporadic and irregular.

I cannot even survive without traveling and going on TDY for weeks at a time and I have a drawer full of credentials in my office for various federal agencies/vendors.

So it depends upon where you live and which agencies have the most work in your market. But DCSA is the elephant in the room and if they continue to not provide work or very little quantity of work, Im not sure who can survive financially except for the retired person with the pension or the person with a social security payment to weather the storm. DCSA controls 90% of the federal marketplace for conducting national security and public trust work for the federal government. So that means we are all screwed especially if you live in a place that is heavily reliant upon DCSA providing work to you such as military bases and Department of Energy (National Laboratory) facilities.

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Where do you work? Asking because I’m hoping my area (Washington DC) isnt what you’re describing. I am credentialed with DCSA and RB but about to get ICE and CBP

Im not going to disclose specifically where I am located but suffice to say that I’m west of the Mississippi. You should actually be able to find quite a bit of DHS work for CBP/ICE in Washington DC. Whether it can keep you busy F/T, I don’t know. But the DC/Virginia/Maryland area has the most work in the entire country so I don’t think you’ll be lacking work opportunities.

My area has always had a lot of work. I was plenty busy until Aug. This past summer I was cranking out 15 phone TESIs a week. I figure I can’t work full time on DCSA but I’m hoping I can pull enough from 3-4 contracts to put together full time work.

It’s no wonder the backlog is gone when the government is allowing thousands of Investigators to make phone calls for Subject Interviews (each Investigator conducting 15 per week) and conduct them over the telephone. I still find that ridiculous when we can and should do these interviews in person except for military members overseas or in remote locations that are inaccessible.

As long as backlog mitigation stays in place, we can kiss our work goodbye as contractors in most areas of this country.

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CE is actually generating more work. Not sure who is doing 15 phone interviews per week. My Subject interviews are always in person locally unless under some difficult situation that requires phone for example stuck on an offshore oil rig or ship for weeks at a time, out of state for training etc…or located in CA or HI…I do get those assigned on occasion.

15 phone TESI’s a week? I do maybe 2 - 3 by phone each month

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That doesn’t sound like fun…

Being in an area where work is scarce, at times I have been assigned 10 phone TESI’s at a time. Unfortunately the availability has slowed considerably the last couple months. Typically 2-4 evaporate for various reason, primarily as the result of not being able to contact the Subject (I then assign them to the local area and an FI makes an in-person attempt). Once I get them scheduled, doing three a day is usually no problem. So, when they were consistently available, I was completing 10- 12 a week.

15 telephone TESI a week? I suspect somewhat exaggerated. I found phone TESI takes longer that in person (not counting the drive time). Figure in the briefing time, time to contact the Subject and schedule the TESI will be an hour. The TESI will take 1:15 to 1:30 hrs depending on the issues. Financials will take much longer. Then typing the report, another 1 - 2 hrs. So, 3.5 - 5 hours a TESI at best and that is with a very corporative reviewer who wont reopen you for not listing the email on a supervisor for a new employment.
I concur with others that CE is having some impact on the workload but the new backlog mediation is the major factor in that but more important is a threat to National Security and things will hit the fan sooner rather than later.


Not sure what kind of phone TESIs some of you have been getting but the only phone TESIs I get are quick, simple issues. It’s pretty easy to do 3 a day.

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Yes, only takes about 20 min to do a phone TESI when the only issue is the kid got fired from Burger King for being on his phone too much.


Once they started phone TESI’s all the cases in the field became difficult with no breaks of an easy case now and then because all the easy cases were being done by phone. That makes it a lot harder in the daily field grind and in maintaining quality in the field. But apparently we won’t have to worry about any of this soon…the way things are looking.

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Phone thesis are the reason that there is no backlog! These companies did it to themselves

There was one month this summer where every phone TESI I had was 18/19 year old kids going into the military and the only issue they had was being late to a part time job or tried marijuana once. The entire case would usually only take 2 or 2.5 hours.

Specify exactly how CE is creating more work?


I can count on one hand the number of “easy” phone TESI’s I’ve received. Mine are always ridden with DUI/DWI, PR, illegal use and employment issues. Not to mention financial. Sigh.


Somewhat off topic… But has anyone seen all the job postings for the personnel security specialist positions on the FBI contract? They have been around for a while now and the job qualifications state working in the BI field would fit the qualifications. There is only one slight issue. You need an active TS…and probably 90% of the BI’s our there (at least working at the vendors) do not have an active TS. I already spoke to a recruiter and they are not sponsoring any TS’s. I think that was rather idiotic on their part to not do so but maybe that will change.

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Plus a lot of those jobs will eventually be moving to Huntsville, AL, which is probably why the jobs are open.