Background Investigators : Introduction

Interested in a national-security career that involves working with people every day, requires excellent time management, and involves a lot of self-sufficiency?

Consider a career as a background investigator! Background investigators may work for contract companies or directly for the government. Background investigators are critical to the hiring process as well as government’s personal security program. Investigators aren’t responsible for deciding who gets a security clearance. Investigators are the fact finders who search and confirm information related to an individuals background application.  What does a day look like for a background investigator? Investigators work remotely in locations across the country but you shouldn’t expect to spend every day at your home office or local coffee shop. Investigators spend a significant part of their day conducting personal subject interviews, but don’t worry there’s no good cop bad cop even in complex cases. The interview is a cordial fact-finding discussion.  The majority of an investigators day is spent reviewing cases, making phone calls, scheduling interviews, conducting interviews, and writing reports. Background investigators generally have a great deal of independence in how they structure their days, including when they schedule and conduct interviews and when they write reports. Background investigators don’t generally work standard nine-to-five workdays because a significant portion of background investigators days are spent conducting interviews. Excellent people skills are a must. Investigators should also have excellent writing skills and the ability to organize information clearly.  Since background investigators are dealing with employers and applicants in the midst of a stressful job search and clearance application process, they need a great deal of sensitivity in working through stressful situations.  Discretion is also a requirement as investigators have access to sensitive personal information.

From relationship issues to financial struggles, if you love scouring for facts, don’t mind time in the car, and enjoy interacting with people, a career as a background investigator may be a great one for you.