An update on the clearance jobs market

Evan Lesser, founder and president of, joins host Derrick Dortch on this week's Fed Access to discuss what the federal government is doing to ...

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This week on Fed Access, Evan Lesser, founder and president of, joins host Derrick Dortch to discuss the state of the clearance job market and the progress the federal government is making in correcting the problems that led to a backlog in the security clearance process.

Head shot of Lesser
Evan Lesser, founder & president,

According to Lesser, the processing times have improved since last year. Currently it takes about 295 days for a federal job seeker to get a top secret security clearance. That’s down from more than 500 days in 2018. The backlog for other clearances is 181 days — down from 300 days in 2018. Lesser says there are about 267,000 people awaiting a security clearance.

Lesser also discusses how the low unemployment rate in the U.S. is impacting federal agencies’ ability to hire people with security clearances. He says there is a great demand for those workers, many of whom are taking jobs in the private sector.

Finally Lesser talks about the kinds of jobs in the federal government that need cleared professionals. He says agencies are looking for workers in IT, software development, cybersecurity, tech support and quality assurance.

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