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  • Originally posted by 1811orBust View Post
    Because there are less overseas spots than domestic. DS needs more agents for protection and other bs stateside. Plus, with the sps program going away, they will need more agents for PSP posts. That will be problematic though because DS recruits FSO types that are LEO inclined. Most didn't join to go to Iraq, then spend 6 years in the USA doing awful crim work or protection.

    Sent from my LG-D850 using Tapatalk
    Same thing the LNO over here said.....

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    • Originally posted by 1811orBust View Post
      Because there are less overseas spots than domestic. DS needs more agents for protection and other bs stateside. Plus, with the sps program going away, they will need more agents for PSP posts. That will be problematic though because DS recruits FSO types that are LEO inclined. Most didn't join to go to Iraq, then spend 6 years in the USA doing awful crim work or protection.

      Sent from my LG-D850 using Tapatalk
      So I would assume a lot of stateside posts with constant TDY's?

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      • Not necessarily. If you are posted in a crim office you may not tdy much at all. It all depends.

        Sent from my LG-D850 using Tapatalk

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        • Heads up for those currently on the register... July class invites have started going out, so check your e-mail / spam folder! E-mail indicates a start date of 7/11/2016.

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          • ..........
            Last edited by Apache82; 08-13-2019, 09:40 PM.

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            • Originally posted by Apache82 View Post
              Any clue how many people are on the register right now?
              Call or email to find out if you are on it. If you are not, who cares how many are?

              This is why agents quit hanging out here for the most part. This thread has become a dozen messages a day about "how many people are on the registrar," or "BEX invites are going out on Mars."

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              • Anyone have a spouse that gave up a career to follow you in this position? Also anyone on here with kids that can give their experience?

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                • Originally posted by 1811orBust View Post
                  Because there are less overseas spots than domestic. DS needs more agents for protection and other bs stateside. Plus, with the sps program going away, they will need more agents for PSP posts. That will be problematic though because DS recruits FSO types that are LEO inclined. Most didn't join to go to Iraq, then spend 6 years in the USA doing awful crim work or protection.

                  Sent from my LG-D850 using Tapatalk


                  Current and future agents need to know that our core responsibilities have not changed (RSO, CRIM, PROTECTION). Yes, it is harder to get overseas, but we have always had a very strong domestic mission involving criminal investigations and protection and our distribution right now is roughly 55% domestic and 45% overseas. Especially at the 04 and 03 levels, overseas positions are extremely competitive (especially in developed countries), but in simple terms using the figures above, roughly 5 out of 10 agents are assigned overseas at any given time. NO ONE who has joined DS in the modern era (last 20 years) did so thinking that they would be overseas as an RSO (not an A/RSO) for 3/4 of their career. If they did, they were misinformed or misguided. Also, the criminal and protection mandates are what make us special agents with arrest authority and 24-hour carry authority, among other things.

                  The "new normal" will be that some very successful, hard-working agents will retire after 20 + years at the 03 level. This has been a very tough pill for us to swallow, because many of our colleagues that are only 1-3 years ahead of us in seniority are 02's and even a few are 01's. Once this "new normal" is accepted internally, and hopefully throughout State, it shouldn't be an issue for future generations of agents. By the way, the max salary right now in 2016 numbers for an 03 with DC locality pay plus LEAP is about $148,000, so you'll make a good living as a "journeyman" 03, it just has to be acceptable to your ego, and to others who are used to only **** bags retiring as 03s. What is likely for this generation is that these 20-year veteran 03s will have possibly been overseas for three or four tours, maybe never having their own RSO shop because there aren't that many at the 03 level; currently the bulk of RSO positions are at the 02 level. Maybe, (big maybe) some may be downgraded to the 03 level due to the collective rise in experience in the 03 ranks, but this right now would only be a case of robbing Peter to pay Paul because this would just pass the burden on to the 02 level.

                  If you are in the application/hiring process now, and your primary reason for coming to DS is to be THE RSO at multiple overseas posts, or to be senior management, you may want to reassess this as a career choice, unless you are very young. If you are okay with 60% domestic work, or even favor our domestic programs vs RSO work, then you'll be even better off, as long as you don't mind changing domestic jobs and locations. For example, I'm an 03 and I've been on for almost 14 years. I've spent 6 years overseas (a 1, 2, and 3 year assignment interspersed with three domestic assignments), and I am going out again soon on another 3 year assignment. So, at 17 years, I'll have 9 years overseas, but I will admit that among my peer group, I will have at least one more overseas assignment under my belt than most. I really like protection and crim work too, and I'm looking forward to doing them again.

                  I am not a "yes man" or a "company guy" and I haven't "drank the Kool-Aid". I'm just an honest realist who still likes his job more than enough to not be considering a career change or to be poo-pooing my agency on the internet. Bidding and promotions have been serious points of contention for me too - I've been supremely frustrated often with our lack of planning for this inevitable "pig in the python" problem, and I don't agree with all of the leaders we've had in my tenure as far as their vision for our agency.

                  As priorities and funding streams shift, so does our agent distribution. We have an excess of agents at the 03 level right now that is a product of many things, but the simple fact is that the agency cannot assign agents overseas to positions that don't exist, nor can we promote people to "make room" in the mid-level ranks if the positions don't exist at the grade above them. So, getting from 03 to 02 is, and will be for some time, very competitive. And there is also trickle down that has lengthened the time in service average for the 04 to 03 promotions. As the "new normal" becomes not so new and more of the very senior agents retire and new agents who understand the math get hired, it will be just what it is, normal, and the "new" will be dropped.

                  As an aside - before, during, and now after the SPS program, DSS has never had trouble filling the one year overseas positions whether they were straight protection, A/RSO, or hybrids. If anything, the SPS program going away adds several overseas opportunities, but the career drawback that is attached to them is that they will not "count" as a traditional ARSO tour, so they will not get the agent closer to being an RSO several years down the road. To this, I'll say what a very sage superior once told me, "NEVER bid solely based on if the position will increase your promotion potential if you are not currently eligible (and still then, don't bid on a job you don't want), and never game plan your assignments more than two assignments out." The point is, we will have a new President and Secretary of State soon, we could have new DS leadership at any time, or there could be a new geopolitical crisis or emerging threat that completely changes where DS is focused and/or what Congress is willing to fund.
                  Last edited by DSS-SA; 04-28-2016, 06:24 PM. Reason: typos

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                  • Well said. I'm a 3 and have been overseas 4/6 years. I'm an exception though, especially since none of those tours were PSP.

                    The one thing I disagree is that recruitment is honest about the overseas split. When I came on, and I still see it happening, DS agents would tell recruits you do one domestic tour and then are out. Nowhere in the vacancy do we give a deal picture of the life and the "new normal."

                    IMO, that needs to change.
                    Last edited by 1811orBust; 04-28-2016, 06:21 PM.

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                    • Originally posted by Tucker View Post
                      Anyone have a spouse that gave up a career to follow you in this position? Also anyone on here with kids that can give their experience?
                      Tucker, the initial work on this one is on you. This topic has come up several times on this thread since I've been on it (2007). I know I've answered a few different questions about family members myself.

                      Please try the "Search this thread" function and see if your questions are answered.

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                      • ...................................
                        Last edited by Lee23; 05-15-2016, 10:05 PM.

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                        • ..........
                          Last edited by Apache82; 08-13-2019, 09:41 PM.

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                          • I hear July class is 48.

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                            • I was fortunate enough to recently pass my BEX. Awaiting medicals and final suitability. Quick question -- does anyone know what would be a competitive score for the register? I was given my score upon passing the BEX assessment, which is on a 0-100 scale -- was also told that the minimum to pass BEX is 80. I'm wondering if I would get called off the register with a 90... I have a foreign language, although very rusty, and not confident that I could pass the language test for the extra points.

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                              • There are so few on the register now that with a score of 90 you will get hired assuming you can get on the register quickly

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