It can be a frustrating time for jobseekers in the IT, Defence and Government sectors when searching for new career opportunities. Many job vacancies in these sectors are advertised as requiring Security Clearance, be that DV or SC Clearance.

This can be a hindrance to landing your ideal job if you do not hold any clearance; you will struggle to get the job without the relevant clearance level but without the job, you will find it difficult to gain clearance. It is like a safe which you need a combination to, however the combination is locked in the safe!

With the demand for DV and SC cleared candidates on the rise, especially in Defence and Government sectors, this is only going to become more apparent in these particular industries, and indeed others.


Don’t panic! There are strategies which you can implement to help you overcome these problems. Here at Thatcher MCS, we often recruit for DV and SC Cleared job roles and thought it was time to provide you with advice on how to land a security cleared job, even when you currently do not hold clearance. There is no need to look at a job vacancy which requires Security Clearance and immediately think that you cannot apply for it.

So, you have found a job role which you are perfect for but you are now in a predicament – they are looking for DV or SC Cleared candidates, to which you don’t have. Many companies will still consider employing you with the condition that you pass the DV or SC Clearance.

As you will already be aware, in order to gain DV or SC Clearance you need to be sponsored by an organisation. If you come across a job vacancy and you believe you have the skills a company is looking for, they may still consider hiring you and putting you through the security clearance process. As soon as your DV or SC Clearance comes through, you can be placed in the role. I am not going to mislead you, this is very difficult to do, but if you are the right person for the job, why not go for it?

What will I do whilst waiting for DV or SC Clearance?

The next question is, if they do hire you with the condition you pass clearance, what will you do until that clearance comes through? DV and SC Clearance is a long process and doesn’t happen overnight but there are a few options for you whilst waiting for clearance.

If it is a large company that is sponsoring you then this would be the perfect time for them to put you through any training you need to undergo for your security cleared job role. Or, they may have another role which doesn’t require any clearance that you can fill until your SC or DV Clearance comes through.

Another scenario, perhaps you are still currently employed, if it is possible, stay with them until your clearance comes through. It’s all circumstantial, but there are options so don’t be disheartened, you can secure a clearance role even if you don’t have DV or SC Clearance initially, so now you can start looking into how you can make it work for you.

Security Clearance brings a world of opportunities

It is worth bearing in mind that through all the frustration of waiting to be Security Cleared, once you have attained SC or DV Clearance, a door will be opened to a world of opportunities.

Photo by Katri Niemi

Trying to find a job is a bit like trying to find a space in a car park – although it does help to have good driving skills and a ridiculously small car, most of the time it comes down to luck. Some people can drive into the car park and find a space straight away, others have to drive round a few times until a space becomes available. But eventually you do find that space in the car park.

There are many options out there so don’t be defeatist, if you really want a role which requires security clearance you can get, there is always a way, it may be a lot harder than trying to land a role which doesn’t require DV or SC Clearance, but it will be worth it in the end, so keep your chin up and carry on with the job hunt!