Background Investigator Job Overview Typically, background investigators are responsible for conducting federal ...
Background Investigator Job Overview
Typically, background investigators are responsible for conducting federal background investigations according to ICD 704 standards and federal regulations. Some background investigators work in a corporate setting and may have responsibilities similar to those of private investigators. Their responsibility is to gather information and compile reports about employees and businesses. This can include pre-employment screenings of applicants. This sometimes requires fieldwork, and investigators must be certain their findings are factual and come from reliable sources.
Background investigators must cooperate with local law enforcement organizations, courts, educational institutions and other businesses to complete background investigations of individuals. Often these investigations are used to determine the individual's suitability for certain employment, security clearances and general fitness determinations.
Background Investigator Education Requirements
At minimum, background investigators must have a high school diploma or GED. Some employers do require training in criminal justice or police science. Often it is preferred for investigators to have previous experience with investigation, and applicants need to demonstrate strong communication skills. On-the-job training is also required, and applicants must also pass credit, criminal and driving record checks. A U.S. Government Security Clearance is also required. On a character basis, applicants should also have absolute integrity. They must be able to perform their job without bias.
Background Investigator Job Market
Currently background investigators usually work for employers that are contracted by the federal government through the Office of Personnel Management in the Federal Investigative Services. Employment for all investigators is anticipated to grow by about 11 percent by 2022. As the population grows, there will be more of a demand for trained investigators who can assist corporations, local police departments, state and federal agencies. Applicants who will have an advantage in the job search are those that are bilingual, those that have military service or law enforcement experience and those that have a college degree in criminal justice or police science. Background investigators who have advanced qualifications may be able to become senior investigators.
Background Investigator Job Salary Information
The average annual salary for a background investigator is about $54,000, according to the United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, background investigators working in corporate settings made about $2,000 less annually. Senior investigators, however, typically make about $15,000 more annually than their background investigator colleagues. Salaries for all investigators can vary greatly depending on the company, its location and its specific requirements for job applicants.