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Hiring in tech is hard. TeamUP has worked with many industries to make that a little less so. As we head into 2023, our recruiters are here to do the same in aerospace and defense. What does this look like, exactly? Below we’ll discuss what goes into working in the aerospace and defense sector, who fills those roles, and how TeamUP can help find the fits needed to get the job done— and done well.

What does an aerospace defense engineer do?

We’re simplifying a bit, but aerospace engineers design, analyze, test, troubleshoot, and develop advanced defense systems, spacecraft, and aviation technology. They develop the standards for quality control and design processes, identify issues for products that aren't working properly, and try to find solutions to fix those issues.

They can specialize in designing different types of aerospace products, such as commercial and military airplanes and helicopters, remotely piloted aircraft and rotorcraft, spacecraft including launch vehicles and satellites, and military missiles and rockets.

What is DOD clearance?

Having Department of Defense (DOD) clearance indicates that an engineer has been granted access to classified information or materials included in sensitive or classified projects. These engineers may also be subject to additional security protocols, such as regular polygraph tests, to ensure they continue to meet the access requirements.

There are three levels of DOD clearance:

  • Confidential: Confidential clearance gives the holder access to information that could damage national security if leaked. This level of clearance would most likely be needed for roles like project management. The confidential clearance level requires a renewal every 15 years.

  • Secret: Secret clearance provides access to data that, if released without authorization, could cause severe damage to national security. Some examples of roles requiring this level of clearance include counterintelligence analysts or cybersecurity analysts. To retain this status, holders must renew secret clearance every 10 years.

  • Top-secret/Sensitive compartmented information: Unauthorized release of top-secret information could cause grave national security damage. A systems administrator or nuclear policy analyst are some roles that might necessitate this level of clearance. Top-secret clearance requires reinvestigation every five years.

Hiring engineers with DOD clearance can be challenging since the process can be lengthy and involved, taking several months to complete with no guarantee of approval. Additionally, requirements can vary depending on the specific level of clearance needed and the type of work the engineer will be doing.

How to obtain DOD clearance as an engineer

To obtain DOD clearance at any level, an engineer must undergo a thorough background check to ensure they are trustworthy and don’t pose a security risk. However, the federal government does provide a step-by-step process after a conditional job offer is made:

  1. Candidates submit a questionnaire to the hiring office along with supporting documentation. (Separate questionnaires exist for non-sensitive, national security, and public trust positions.)

  2. An investigator reviews the questionnaire and documentation.

  3. The investigator conducts fingerprint and background checks. They verify critical events in the applicant's timeline.

  4. An adjudicator determines the candidate's eligibility for national security clearance.

  5. The adjudicator contacts the hiring agency with the investigation results.

Why use a consultant provider like TeamUP?

TeamUP can help to streamline the hiring process by identifying qualified candidates who already have the necessary clearance. This can save time and resources that would otherwise be spent on the clearance process, filling open positions faster. Secondly, for those seeking clearance for certain positions, TeamUP’s experts can provide valuable guidance on the process, including any special requirements or considerations that may apply. This will also help all parties avoid potential delays or complications and ensure suitable candidates are found and provided. TeamUP differs in its dedication to providing ongoing support and assistance to engineers in and out of each contract.

Who TeamUP works with

TeamUP delivers support and solutions for the defense, intelligence, and military industries to help develop applications, combat vehicles, artillery systems, electronic systems, subsystems, radar, navigation and GPS, communications, networks, autonomous systems, and aircraft.

TeamUP’s mission-critical services:

  • RF/Analog/ Digital
  • Digital: ASIC/RTL design, FPGA, Design Verification, DFT, Validation, Emulation, Physical Design (Timing and PNR)
  • Analog: RF, A/MS IC design, Layout Design
  • Software engineering: Embedded development (Audio, DSP, Graphics, Video, Wireless, Wired, Storage, Motor Control), Firmware, DSP, and Bare Metal
  • Cybersecurity: Cyber defense, threat intelligence, cloud security, targeted attack testing, threat intelligence, detection, and response.
  • IT infrastructure: Cloud computing, Infrastructure as Code, Elastic Stack, DevSecOps, and Next Generation Data Center Services.
  • Application development: client-server development using c++, C#, and java; front-end development using JavaScript frameworks and back-end development using python. We also provide DevOps and QA testing.
  • AI/ML/Data: Architecting distributed systems, pipeline development, architecting data stores. We build tools and frameworks to unlock the power of your data and bring to life machine learning projects to bring forth the fruit of automation and discovery in artificial intelligence.

Let TeamUP find your fit in aerospace and defense

Whether you’re looking for an engineering role or hoping to fill a much-needed piece of a puzzle, TeamUP is here to help.

To find out more,

Contact us today!

Post by Jamie Vassar
February 28, 2023