NEWS + ADVICE
Interview with A Recruiter, Scott Theobald, CSSS.Net
Scott tell us about yourself and your company
I’m a Marine Corps veteran and have been with CSSS.NET in the Omaha office for nearly seven years, recruiting on a national and international basis. We’ve recently added Kim Williams as a Senior Recruiter in our Washington, DC, office to ensure adequate recruiting resources to meet our current needs and strategic development goals. You can follow me on Twitter at @CSSSRecruiter.
CSSS.NET president Lisa Wolford, a service disabled veteran, started the company out of her house in 1997. Today we’ve grown to nearly 150 employees in almost every state. About half of our employees are veterans and we do have a preference for hiring veterans when we can. Our offices are in Washington, DC, a block from the White House, and Bellevue, NE, a mile from U.S. Strategic Command at Offutt Air Force Base.
The CSSS.Net hiring process
As a small company we are more agile and mobile than larger companies. We’re fairly aggressive when it comes to moving quickly on hiring, while still doing due diligence.
What types of cleared positions do you fill
CSSS.Net primarily does IT engineering, as well as some SME work. Many of our current openings are in Omaha, San Antonio, Fort Meade, Kansas City and Barksdale.
We have an immediate need at U.S. Strategic Command here in Omaha for a Java Development Engineer.
What are the toughest security cleared positions for you to fill and why
Software engineers are hard to find. There is such a demand for that skill set in both the commercial and federal sector. Everyone needs those people. And they’re typically well compensated. We’re aggressively seeking a Java Development Engineer right now.
What type of certifications or training can you recommend for someone looking to get a job with your company
Any project manager better be PMP certified, and if you’re in info security or info assurance, you must have CISSP. That’s standard.
Beyond that it depends on the needs of the contract and the particular position, but in general certifications never hurt.
At what point in their transition should a service member start looking for a job with your company
It’s never too early for a transitioning service member to start networking.
What’s it like for transitioning military to work for your company
Transitioning military members have quite an adjustment to a commercial environment. We set up mentors for our new employees to help them acclimate to the private sector, and to get used to the company.
Any words of wisdom for cleared job seekers using social media
Really watch those email addresses. The best rule of thumb is to be professional in every step of your job search.
Do you review job seekers online presence during the hiring process
We use social media for recruiting and to vet job seekers as well. Once a contingent offer has been made, an internet review is part of our background check process. We Google individuals and review any profiles we come across.
What do you see security cleared job seekers doing wrong
Many job seekers are not specific in what they’re looking for. If you don’t know, how would I know? People apply for all sorts of positions that they aren’t qualified for, which is a waste of time.
With transitioning military, communicating experience in civilian terms is often a challenge.
What’s the craziest thing a job seeker has ever said to you
It was many years ago, but I still remember calling a job seeker to schedule an interview and her voicemail greeting was “Wanda’s Love Palace”.
I also had a guy who showed up for an interview for an accounting position in shorts and flip flops. His excuse was he just came from a picnic.