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Background Investigation and Current Employer - when to tell them?


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  • Background Investigation and Current Employer - when to tell them?

    Hey all,

    I was just curious as to what point in the process for some of these LE jobs do you choose to tell your current employer that you've applied to something else.

    I'm in the midst of a BI for a DSS position, and hadn't yet notified my current employer, primarily because there is still a good stretch to go before the possibility of leaving.

    Today I received an email that my investigator contacted some co-workers/bosses, as that's who I had listed as someone who could validate my employment. I work as a consultant and we get many government contracts, which led to an akward email wondering what account I was working that might have potential state department work.

    I had to explain what it was for, and fortunately my bosses are very understanding and seem to be supportive. Had they not been, my outing may have gone a bit differently. I had planned to tell them, just not at this stage.

    I suppose I could have been more explicit with the investigator, but I also imagine they have to do their due diligence, which probably includes speaking with current employers.

    Curious how others who have been through the process handled things.

  • #2
    Obviously each case will be unique, but you will want to be sure your current employer gets the courtesy of notification from you vice a BI poking around. Be up front about it- you enjoy working there but have a career goal to be (fill in the blank) and that they will get 100% out of you until that moment comes.

    And FWIW- this question comes up time and time again here.
    Originally posted by SSD
    It has long been the tradition on this forum and as well as professionally not to second guess or Monday morning QB the officer's who were actually on-scene and had to make the decision. That being said, I don't think that your discussion will go very far on this board.
    Originally posted by Iowa #1603
    And now you are arguing about not arguing..................


    • #3
      I am currently in the Background investigation step.
      I requested they wait to contact my current employer until they were fairly certain about me.
      They waited until after they interviewed my wife and most of my reference, at which point they let me know they were ready to start contacting my current and previous employers.
      They worked with me and didn't appear to have much of an issue with it. Just my experience.


      • #4
        Originally posted by DOA-DOL-DOJ-DHS
        First, a little late to be asking.

        2nd, YOU or anyone else should quickly and automatically tell anyone you named on your application of a possible notification.

        3rd. There is nothing wrong with keeping you current boss in the loop that you always looking for a job. The information could weigh in on them offering you a raise to stay.
        I wasn't really asking in terms of what I should do at this point as the cats out of the bag . I was more curious as to what others have done or how they've approached the situation.

        I do appreciate the response from everyone though.

        I'm not frustrated with my investigator, as he was doing his job. I suppose I just didn't realize how quickly they actually get things done once the ball is rolling.


        • #5
          You can request that they do not contact your current employer at all. Some BIs accommodate you, and some do not. I have been told by a BI who conducted mine, that all they really need to do is to determine that you do indeed work where you claim to, and that you are in good standing.

          First, request that they do not contact your current employer. Explain how it could be debilitating to your career. If they cannot accommodate that request, ask if they can simply talk to HR, and not mention you are applying for a job. Sometimes they will just say you have applied for a clearance. This may or may not work, depending on what you currently do for a living.

          I hope this helps.


          • #6
            I just had a case like this and the candidate "DID" request that we hold off contacting his current employer. He stated "HE" wanted to let them know what position he was applying for before we started asking questions. He wanted it as a courtesy and we were happy to oblige.


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