A Booz Allen cleared talent recruiter shares her advice

Karen Mullikin is a Booz Allen sourcing recruiter for cleared talent. “My role is to dig deep, make calls, and assess fit,” she says. Over three decades in recruiting, Karen has seen it all. Her experience is our gain: We picked her brain about why cleared talent should choose Booz Allen to advance their careers and help empower people to change the world.

Why should cleared professionals choose Booz Allen over other companies?

We’re involved in crucial, mission-focused work. Securing critical information matters here. Clearance matters. But there’s another reason: We grow organically by developing our people. We expose employees to new challenges and focus on sharpening their skills. We even have an entire team dedicated to employee mobility. We make sure we’re always working on career skills, so when one assignment ends, we’re ready for the next.

What’s the best way to get a job at Booz Allen?

First and foremost, keep your skills sharp and your resume up to date. Secondly, if you know someone here who can endorse those skills, ask them to make an employee referral. If someone recommends a candidate, they’re a priority for me. People should network—don’t be afraid to ask your peers for help!

How can candidates set themselves apart when applying for a role at Booz Allen?

It makes an impression when you demonstrate an innate curiosity and desire to learn. That might look like asking thoughtful questions in your interview, showing interest in Booz Allen’s culture, and explaining how the role to which you’re applying aligns with your overall career goals.

I love candidates who have taken the time to look at our website and learn about us. Spend some time on our careers site before we talk. Look at our jobs, and be prepared to tell me what you’re gravitating toward and how your skills are a good match for the role.

What’s the biggest mistake you see people make on their resume?

It’s a misstep when people talk about a program versus their role in it. If you tell me, “We built a new IT system and incorporated new payroll and benefits services,” my question will be, “But what did you do? What was your part? What did you accomplish?”

How can a candidate impress you?

Be professional. If we have an appointment and you’re not ready or don’t answer the phone professionally, that’s a red flag for me. Verbal communication skills are also key. I spend a lot of energy getting people to loosen up and communicate. Top candidates don’t require that. We’re a consulting firm, so you must be able to talk to clients.

What questions do you want candidates to ask?

I like them to ask me what’s next. I want them to show me they’re thinking in the long term and that they’re looking for a career with us. Plus, asking questions about the position to which they’re applying shows they’ve done their research and are invested in the possibility of working at Booz Allen.

Find your fit with Booz Allen.

Join us. The world can’t wait.

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