Two Offers, One for TS, one for S

First off I’m not totally sure if this is the right category for this so feel free to move this or tell me I’m a moron if I’m in the wrong space.

I recently received two conditional job offers. One is for a Defense Contractor. The position requires an Interim Secret to start. The other is direct with DoD. It requires full TS/SCI to start.

First question: My recruiter at DoD says six to eight months is what they’re seeing. I have no foreign travel, no criminal record and no foreign contacts. Is this actually realistic? I’m seeing higher numbers on here but I’m not sure if they’re outliers or if my recruiter is sugar coating this.

Second question: My recruiter at DoD, as well as a few industry friends, have recommended that I take both offers. Get the defense contractor job, work that until the DoD clearance comes through and then bail. They’ve all assured me this is how the industry commonly works. To me this sounds really scummy and a bad start to my career in the IC. Can anyone give me guidance here? I don’t want to sit on my bum for any amount of time without a job but its preference not bills based. I can afford to float. I’m concerned about burning bridges before I’ve even begun to build them.

In addition, I’m a bit worried about two security investigations going side by side. I’m not sure thats okay.

Thanks in Advance for all comments.

Concurrent investigations are a pretty common topic on this and other forums. There is some indication that you can have two open at the same time, but particularly since both are within DoD, it is likely that the highest level clearance investigation will take precedence. This seems like an issue for you since you only need a full TS/SCI to start, so you might never be given the opportunity for an interim TS. You really are in a pickle. I would recommend that you talk to your recruiter at DoD and see if they can request an interim for you and maybe get that to work somehow with the DoD contractor?

The 6-8 month time frame for TS/SCI seems very, very sugar coated. Current end-to-end averages for initial TS applicants are around 470 days (source: ), and this is the median for the fastest 90%, excluding the very long waiting 10%. Sure, you don’t have much of a record to deal with, but it does take a while for your case to be looked at from all the proper angles.

If I were in your position, I would look for a private industry job to fill the time. You will probably have well over a year waiting for the DoD TS/SCI, so don’t feel bad about taking a job that you will leave. You are in a bit of a pickle with taking that contractor job since the concurrent clearance applications will very likely prevent you from getting the secret or interim secret that you want.

It also depends if they want to spend the money to make your TS/SCI a priority case. I just had a subject fill out the case papers in January. It got assigned to me in early February. The case closed and got adjudicated by the end of March For a T5 case. This is a total outlier but it shows that it’s possible to get cleared quickly.