Everything You Need to Know About Becoming a US Defense Contractor

defense contractor

The U.S. Defense Department hires thousands of people each year. They hire individuals as a defense contractor and hundreds of businesses for major contracts. It can be a lucrative business once you’ve broken through the mounds of red tape that goes with it.

Government contractor jobs run the gambit from scientists and doctors to accountants and security. There’s a place for you or your company in the government, but you need to know how to become involved.

There are many hoops to jump through. Once you’ve made it through it can provide you or your business with years of high revenue and income.

Defense Contractor Basics

There are a few ground rules that any applicant for a defense contractor position needs to know.

Almost every job within the defense department requires the applicant to be a U.S. citizen. If your company is out of the country or if you’re in the U.S. on a work visa, it can be difficult to find a contractor position.

Also, prepare to undergo tests for security clearance. A DoD contractor job often requires working in or around sensitive information. You’ll get more than a cursory background check. You’ll want to make sure your business qualifies for the contract.

You’ll need to undergo testing and various requirements to meet security requirements. If convicted of a felony, drug abuse, lied during the application process, dishonorable discharge, etc. then you may not meet the security requirements.

Finding DoD Contractor Jobs

If you want to know how to become a defense contractor, you’ll need to know where to look for opportunities. You can look for contracts from the DoD website or from the federal job website.

If you’re a company looking to work on defense projects, then you’ll need to provide a bid. The bid could be a few pages or dozens depending on the scope of work and the money involved. A bid to pave the defense department parking lot looks different than one to design the guidance system of the newest rocket.

Individuals go through a hiring process like any other job. It can take weeks or months before hearing back about a bid or job application. The wheels of government turn slowly.

Understand How Government Works

Being a contractor for the government is different than in the private sector. The government uses public funds and follows specific rules and guidelines about workers wage, safety, and other issues.

You’ll need to provide various reports about progress on the project, employees and more. You’ll also need to keep track of every penny spent and provide that information to the government.

Since you’re using public money, there is a level of transparency that you don’t have with private sector jobs. Know what hoops you’ll need to go through so you can have a long and happy relationship with the Defense Department.

Once You’re In, You’re In

The hardest part of becoming a defense contractor is breaking through the first barriers of red tape and bureaucracy. Once you have, then it’s usually smooth sailing when applying for other contracts.

If you want to learn more about becoming a DoD contractor and working with the government, then explore our website.