Security Clearance – Use it or lose out

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Having active security clearance can play an important role in your job search efforts. While having one doesn’t guarantee you a job, it can increase your chances for landing a role across multiple industries.

Your security clearance status tells an employer (who may lack first-hand knowledge) that you can be trusted, on and off the job. It suggests that you possess proven degrees of loyalty, integrity and honesty. Now more than ever, these are priceless characteristics that any employer will seek – even those whose jobs don’t require the credential.

Let’s not overlook the big bucks of the situation

Having an active clearance level can mean that a higher salary or day rate will be offered, because employers won’t have to spend time - or incur the costs - of putting you through the clearance process. Without a doubt, having a security clearance is a plus for your career.

Levels of Security Clearance

There are three main levels of security clearance within the UK Government and Defence sectors:

  • Counter Terrorist Check (CTC)

    Required for job roles with proximity to public figures, access to information or material assessed to be of value to terrorists, or unescorted access to establishments assessed to be at risk from terrorist attack. A CTC doesn’t allow a person access to, or knowledge of, protectively marked assets.

  • Security Check (SC)

    This level of clearance is for staff employed in posts that require substantial access to secret assets or occasional controlled access to top secret assets.

  • Developed Vetting (DV)

    For people in roles that require substantial unsupervised access to top secret assets. The DV process is extensive and some may say intrusive. It includes a check of your identity, employment and education references, security and financial questionnaires, criminal records checks and credit references.

    The Vetting Medical Adviser may contact your doctor to identify medical and psychological conditions that could impact your ability to handle sensitive information. If you refuse access to your medical records, your clearance may be refused. You may also be requested to provide your partner's financial records.

Maintaining your clearance status

Job hunters often ask the ARM Technology team “What happens to my clearance when I leave a security cleared job?”. Basically, security clearance lapses 12 months after leaving a job where it is required. If you re-join a security cleared post within 12 months, there is usually no need to be vetted again. So make sure you use it and don’t lose out on the wealth of opportunities available to pre-cleared candidates in the market place.