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Starting with TSA on 5/24, advice needed.


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  • #31
    heres some advice: always bring some aspirin and get a decent therapist.
    TO: 1/29/09
    Fitness: 4/1/09 passed
    Medical: 4/1/09 passed
    VBT: 3/20/09 eligible
    Drug Test: 4/1/09 passed
    Met with BI: 4/7/09
    Quals: GS-7
    BI: Done
    TSU: 7/2/09


    • #32
      Originally posted by JMABirdUNC View Post
      I'm not sure where you are getting this "TSOs can't transfer" stuff, but like I said in my opening post, there are TSOs who transfer to agencies such as CBP and DoD after one year. The ones you may be referring to are the ones who don't have the necessary qualifications to transfer, or the proper motivation necessary.
      They do not transfer. There are people who have applied for a CBP position and accepted a TSA position while waiting for the CBP call. Some benefits of time employed as a TSO will transfer to CBP. But the statement that TSOs "transfer" to CBP or DoD is incorrect. You would still have to wait for an announcement and go through the application process just like everyone else.
      CBPO East Texas
      TO: 3/3/09
      Pre-Emp Forms: 3/26/09
      Fitness: 4/6/09 -Passed
      Medical: 4/6/09 -Passed
      VBT: 4/7/09 -Passed
      Quals: (GS-7) 4/10/09 -Verified
      Drug Test: 4/17/09 -Passed
      BI: 8/27/09 -Cleared
      TSU: 8/27/09
      FCRA: 05/19/10
      BI Update: 6/16/10


      • #33
        Here so clarification from a tso in nyc,

        ALL tso's start at the same salary, in nyc that around 32-33k. your salary includes locality pay which varies by region. I've seen as much as 34k salary on usajobs somewhere in California. there is NO negotiation salary for tso.

        TSA is an exempted federal agency which basically means that it deviates from standard civil service rules and basically does it own ****.

        All positions in the screener workforce require NO EDUCATION, so u may be more qualified than ur supervisor. Only upper management, FAMS, and non screener staff.

        U ARE NOT AWARDED A CLEARANCE, u just going through a background track on a basic

        U will ALL start as part time, and as u gain SENIORITY AND GOOD ATTENDANCE, will be "offered" a fulltime position AKA real job aka real salary aka living wage...lol. that time frame depends on the mood of your airport.Expect to wait up to 3 YEARS EVEN FOR LARGE airports(bad economy=less turnover). and prepare to work with ppl who make 20k more than u who got fulltime in 6 months(demoralizing, if u need the money).

        U can use TSA's interchange agreement, to make yourself a status candidate, after one year. BUT IT DOESNT MAKE A DIFF, in lagging job market, thier are PLENTY OF STATUS CANDIDATES THAT WILL APPLY TO EVERYTHING. ie unemployed vets

        Wage progression is bases upon PASS(LOOK IT UP)ur raise can range from 0-5%plus a bonus from 0-2500 at the end of the year. most ppl fall in the middle. the only automatic raises are COLA(given to all govt employees) and E band journey TSO(approx 5k) everything else is competitive.

        Come on time, dont call out pass ur test, follow the rules and keep to urself, but be social to an extent and u will do fine
        TSO- it maybe a jobs program, but someone has to do it

        PAPD - Passed - No score
        NYCDOC - july 2008 8302 Passed 95 #40.
        NYPD - July 2008 Passed 91 #???
        "Save your Vet points for promotion"
        Orienatation -?

        TSA TSI(Surface,Aviation, Cargo)

        Meet qualifications:

        NOR:78,yikes, so much for being a college grad

        US CBP Border Patrol:



        • #34
          To the OP, the job as a TSO is very repetitive. At times, you will feel like a robot barking out orders to people who have zero common sense. Do your time and leave when you have a better opportunity.


          • #35
            I thought I would rekindle this thread because I have given some thought to the TSA. I retired from a sworn job at the end of the year when they offered a (PRHCI) Post Retirement Health Care Incentive. The neat thing is I am now collecting a pension. However, what the fancy PRHCI acronym means is I have some tax deferred money that I can use for medical coverage now OR later in life. So, if I can find work that has health insurance I don't have to use that money until later. Which brings me to my questions. I have applied to TSA. I took a computer test and am now at the credit check stage. To be real honest with everybody here, I haven't been to an airport for quite a while, are they even going to look at a 50 year old retired cop or will they pass me over? (I know places aren't supposed to age discriminate, but I know it happens.) Actually, part time work is probably all I want. Do they offer any type of medical insurance for part time employees? If I like the gig, what type of advancement opportunities might there be? I am not looking at this as a stepping stone for an 1811 job because I am too old for that. I have written plenty of police reports over the years, so I am not looking at this as a stepping stone for a local cop either job, since that would mess up my pension. Anyway, if anybody here has gone TSA after being a cop or knows of others that have, what should I know? (I know it is not a sworn job and I am not looking for that.)
            Last edited by Jim1648; 01-08-2011, 12:38 PM. Reason: Details


            • #36

              Alot of your questions can be summed up by this: The job and the training is geared to the absolute lowest common denominator. This isn't meant as a slight to anyone (I was at TSA myself) it's just that the job doesn't require much. I worked with alot of retired local and county LEOs. They all worked part time because you get the same federal benefits as a fulltimer healthcare wise, and you can retire after 5 years as long as you're over a certain age (I can't remember what age it is.) I made a lot of good friends with coworkers, supervisors, and management and found better opportunities elsewhere. The retired LEOs/military I worked with were all squared away, kept their heads down and did the work, and went home happily after a 4 hour work day with great pay, easy work, and excellent benefits. Almost everyone who worked where I did was over 40 years old and retired or self-employed and did it for the health insurance.

              There are promotion and other opportunities like Lead and Behavior Detection Officer, Supervisor, Manager, Inspector, other office/management work that pay better, afford a little more dignity, and deal with less of the mickey mouse but aside from office jobs I believe that's all full-time work.

              Honestly, I'd suggest not applying to the gigantic airports (LAX,JFK,LGA,SFO) etc. as your talent and experience will get 'lost in the sauce' with all of the people that are terrible at the job and/or don't give a ****, steal from PAX and coworkers, etc. and ****ty supervisors/leads/etc. in addition to all the people who aren't... shall we say 'security minded' people.

              Another thing I've seen is that people with initiative, motivation, and independence often find the job frustrating, as many supervisors and leads are very bored and become micromanagers to a flaw. That part can burn people out, and of course as with everything each location is different. Even the different assignments can be worlds different (Different concourses, baggage units, cargo screening) from each other. It's best to come in with an open mind. Also, to those saying they couldn't transfer, alot of people that had been there only a year got to transfer before or right at their 1 year mark. Just gotta play nice with HR.

              Oh yeah and there's some "task forces" you can sign up for like the rapid deployment force or whatever it's called. Basically you can get called up to go supplement any other airport in any other state for however long, usually 24-48 hrs notice, and I had some friends that loved that. Of course you get per diem, a change of scenery, new people to meet, etc. And there's alot of other opportunities, like conferences, meetings, check-out-the-FAM-office days, bomb squad range demonstrations, etc.

              It really is what you make of it and how squared away your management team is.


              • #37
                Starting With TSA On 5/24, Advice Needed.

                Thank you very much for the reply. I tested late last year, but happened to run across the email many weeks after it arrived in my mailbox stating I could move to the next step. I am at the credit check stage, like I posted earlier, so I will see how things shake out. I am working a security job now. It is very convenient. It is a mere 4 miles from my residence and has excellent fringe benefits. Precisely what you mentioned sounds very good to me. That is, being able to work part time AND still get medical benefits is huge. The older I get, not that 50 is ancient, the more I would like to do more stuff with my family. Since I am getting a pension, the medical insurance is actually more important than the hourly wage!

                As far as other opportunities, that sounds pretty good, if I want to work part time I can or full time, I can.

                As far as location goes, I am not moving. I am just a few miles from MSP, so it is that or nothing.

                Wow, your second or third to last paragraph is almost like you know me. Fortunately, or unfortunately, I have had some sergeants just about eliminate all of my initiative and motivation out of me. (You know, just take your calls and don't make waves.) I say that because I know that I can adapt. I have been in positions where I have had incredible Independence and loved it. Again, if I am just doing 4 hour shifts, I can just keep reminding myself that I am already getting a pension and TSA will pay my health insurance.

                The "task forces" sound kind of fun. Not that this is necessarily a good analogy, but when I was in a Prisoner Transport Unit years ago I was able to make three different trips to get prisoners via commercial aircraft. It was fun and neat to see a little different scenery. As a side note, the Airport Police were cool to work with at the various airports I went to. They allowed me to leave my prisoner in their detention cell while I went and got chow, etc.

                I have worked with some other cops that seem to get very set in their ways as they get older. They get real resistant to change. I still like a little variety. That is why I think this might be neat. Also, since I have a public pension, I am not vested in Social Security yet. I still need 8 quarters. I don't know how much that will mean by the time I am eligible, but since I am that close, I might just as well get my 40 quarters.

                Again, thank you very much for the reply!


                • #38
                  I have been in backgrounds for TSO for about a year, I've been in the process for a year and a half. They just recently sent me an email a few weeks ago asking me to update my information. I'm guessing that they are just now getting around to my actual background packet.


                  • #39
                    Starting With TSA

                    Wow, I didn't realize that it took that long. So, at best, I should plan on starting sometime into 2012 then?


                    • #40
                      Everyone's different and how fast they get to your background I'm sure depends on the demand of the locations you selected. Unfortunately I entered the background process at the worst possible time economy wise, so I'm guessing they decided to take their time.


                      • #41
                        I just got an email yesterday to complete an e86. If I understand the terminology correctly, that is an electronic SF86. I had some time last night, so I started it thinking "how long can this take?" Well, it did take longer than I expected. I have check marks over the following:

                        -Application Received

                        -Computer Based Test

                        -Contingent Offer

                        -Credit Check

                        But a star over Airport Assessment. I will have to get back into the TSA Dashboard and see what all that means. Even though I completed the e86 last night, I have neither a check mark or star over that, so maybe that takes a while to get updated.


                        • #42
                          Well i, just applied for the Detroit vacancy. Anything beats my current gig.


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