It’s helpful that the entire world hasn’t completely ground to a halt during this time. I mean, if you wanted to mess with your security clearance, there are plenty of places hiring –  TikTok’s parent company, based in China, has plenty of openings right now. That’s probably because during this COVID-19 quarantine the whole world is staring at their phones, just watching people recreate crazy stunts or dances.  But what if you’d like to steer clear of the TikTok life and stay in the cleared life? What does the landscape look like this week?

Layoffs Impacting the Defense Industry

Howmet Aerospace Howmet Aerospace, an aerospace industry manufacturer, laid off over 600 employees due to the ongoing cost of the coronavirus. Half of the layoffs are voluntary or temporary; however, they could eventually lead to be permanent. Advance layoff was waived due to unforeseen circumstances.
ON Semiconductor Due to not receiving expected Department of Defense (DoD) funding, ON Seminconductor is now closing its Rochester, NY plant and laying off over 100 employees. The plant will close by October.

While the tech industry bled many jobs over the course of the pandemic, much of the bleeding led to restructuring, strengthening, and ultimately, hiring. The ability to hire has been due, in part, to jobs that typically do not require being face-to-face.

Hiring impacting the Defense Industry

Lockheed Martin While the aerospace industry is shifting away from the commercial planes, the Space Force field is open for companies like Lockheed. Currently, Lockheed has almost 1800 Secret, 600 TS/SCI, and 228 TS open positions. Location are spread out around the country, so there’s something for everyone. While not all positions are Space Force related, the organization has many cleared positions waiting to be filled.
Booz Allen Hamilton Booz Allen Hamilton continues to be an organization that listens to the pulse of the nation with a real interest to change and grow, and at the same time, has not only stayed open during the pandemic, but it also has thousands of open positions. Booz Allen has 1,152 Secret, 989 TS/SCI, and 263 TS open positions.

Employer to Watch

Instead of looking at a specific employer this week, here’s a field you should be watching: Artificial Intelligence (AI). Here’s why. This pandemic has amplified interest in this emerging technology. From modeling future data scenarios to automating productions when humans are susceptible to viruses, AI has a lot of room to grow and a lot of clients looking for this capability.

This is an especially great field if you not only have the right skillset, but an entrepreneurial mindset. The expertise and the rules are still being developed. We’ve seen a lot of potential, but we haven’t realized all of the capabilities. So, if you dream of a robot to clean your room like my six year old kid does, perhaps this is the time to start stepping into this field. Instead of worrying whether a robot could replace your job, think of ways you can work your way into this growing field. Whether it’s working with NASA or combatting terrorism for our armed services, the use of artificial intelligence isn’t a field to ignore.

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Jillian Hamilton has worked in a variety of Program Management roles for multiple Federal Government contractors. She has helped manage projects in training and IT. She received her Bachelors degree in Business with an emphasis in Marketing from Penn State University and her MBA from the University of Phoenix.