The process of going from applicant, to viable candidate, to a hired “boots on ground” LOGCAP – Logistics Civil Augmentation Program – employee, is different from the process one typically expects to go through when applying for a “regular” stateside job in a number of ways. When applying for a “regular” job, one routinely expects to be interviewed at least once, if not twice or even three times in some cases – but not so when it comes to applying for a position on LOGCAP.
When a recruiter working for one of the “Big 3” LOGCAP contracting companies is tasked with filling a job requisition – that is to say, Fluor, ITT Exelis, and DynCorp – they will begin their search for the ideal candidate by filtering keywords through an applicant tracking system until the desired number of possible candidates is reached and then nine times out of ten will send an email to the applicants, inquiring as to whether they are still interested in employment.
If the recruiter doesn’t receive a response within a suitable time period, they move on. For those applicants who do respond to an e-mail from the recruiter, an agreed upon time will be setup for a phone conversation, during which the recruiter may have specific questions about the applicant’s work experience and/or may enquire as to a persons availability to deploy.
This conversation with the recruiter isn’t so much an “interview” in the classic sense of the term, as it is an opportunity for the recruiter to get a sense of whether or not this person is capable of performing the job for which they applied, and if the person seems like the type of individual who is capable of completing the term of the employment agreement.
If the applicant has never lived and worked or deployed to an open conflict zone, the recruiter may press the applicant on ensuring they clearly understand the inherent dangers of working in Afghanistan, and the accompanying austere living conditions they can expect to deal with once they get there. You’d be surprised at the number of people who think they’re going to be living in an apartment building with all the modern conveniences of home. News Flash: Afghanistan ain’t Kuwait City or Dubai.
It’s important to note that there are no “contracts” when it comes to working on a LOGCAP project – there are only “At will” employment agreements stating that the employer can terminate the employee for any (or no) reason, ranging from violation of company policy to no longer being in need of the employee’s services, to having “lost confidence” in an employee’s ability to perform the job for which they were hired – conversely, the employee is equally free to end their employment at any time, for any (or no) reason.
If the recruiter is satisfied during the conversation with the applicant that they can do the job, the recruiter may extend a job offer on the spot contingent of course, on the applicant satisfactorily meeting all the prerequisites of employment including a background check, as well as medical and dental clearances.
If there is a need to fill the job req ASAP the recruiter may ask how quickly you can leave, in which case it is advisable to avail yourself of the opportunity and proceed with all due haste, as job offers on LOGCAP are not to be taken casually. A recruiter isn’t going to be amicable to being told that the person they just made a job offer to would like to “think about it”, or “wait for something that pays better”. Lightning rarely strikes twice in the same location and if you turn a job offer down, you can pretty much kiss ever working for that company good-bye.
In summation, if in a conversation with a LOGCAP recruiter with the goal in mind of getting onto the LOGCAP project in whatever capacity possible, acknowledge to the recruiter that you understand the terms of employment being offered to you, the conditions under which you will live and work, and that you are committed to completing the term of your employment agreement. Interview – check.