Security Clearance Process

Internal Tracking System Provides Clearance Status to DOE’s Nuclear Security Applicants

Agencies across DoD and the Federal government should take note of DOE’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Personnel Security Program and how they provide customer service to their cleared population and applicants. Their program appears well organized, user friendly, and provides easy to find information about each stage of the clearance process. They also give applicants two options to inquire about the status of their security clearance application by either contacting the NNSA Personnel Security Help Desk or logging into a secure internal web portal called the Applicant Tracking System (ATS) that allows them to see their own application status and where it is at in the process. It would be beneficial for anyone applying for a DOE job that requires a security clearance to review the information on this site before submitting their application.

In other DOE news, in a recent Office of Hearing and Appeals case, the judge reinstated clearance eligibility for an individual who was issued a notification letter with a summary of security concerns that involved these issues: security violations; bankruptcy; home foreclosure; and failure to self-report. The judge, after hearing contradictory and inconsistent information presented by personnel security staff and hearing mitigating information presented by the applicant, concluded that the individual had mitigated the concerns. After I read through the summary on this case it was obvious that the personnel security staff did not accurately document and follow through on previous inquires with this individual. Applicants and clearance holders take note: many issue of concern are mitigated if presented factually and in an organized manner with corroborating documentation. It also helps to provide character references, and most importantly, make sure you accept responsibility for your previous actions.