Damien N. (20), who recently started training as an all-rounder at the BND, tells about his application process.
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An entry that opens all doors
Source: istock.com/evrim ertik
"The first step into professional life is not a small thing, even more so when you apply to a news service. Still, there’s no need to be shy about it," Damien explains.
For the meanwhile twenty-year-old it was already clear during the school time that he wanted to work at the Federal Intelligence Service. "I’ve been reading up on the website. Then I didn’t think twice about it and sent off my online application for training in the intermediate service."
Take the first step
Applicants are regularly kept up to date on the status of their application and informed of what step is coming up next. "The documents tell you everything you need to know. And if you get stuck, you can call the person in charge of the job."
Damien still remembers what it was like when the official documents arrived in the mail: "At first, my father thought it was a bill from the office. The moment I saw the sender, I knew it had to be about my application. And so it was! It was my invitation to the oral part of the selection process.
This part was the most nerve-wracking for me. It’s not just about coming across well in the interview, but also about solving tasks together as a team."
Put through its paces
In addition to the selection process, the candidates also have to pass a security check. For this, they have to provide information about their career to date and answer biography-related questions. "Working with sensitive information already demands a lot from the employees. There I can well understand that an intensive background check is carried out."The main purpose of the security check is to determine whether a person’s character is suitable for handling sensitive information. Prospective BNDers are therefore screened very carefully, which of course takes a certain amount of time.
Damien, trainee at the BND:
"A background check on applicants is essential."
Only when the security check is positive do applicants and candidates receive a final answer. The entire application process leading up to employment can take longer than other government agencies or commercial enterprises, especially due to the security clearance process.
Then came redemption
"Then the hoped-for ticket for my future arrived in the mail: I had actually made it and was allowed to start my apprenticeship. On the first day, we were warmly welcomed by the teaching staff and had the opportunity to learn about different areas of responsibility at the BND."For the new BND trainees, the first thing they have to do is find their way around and familiarize themselves with their new surroundings. "I’m really excited to see where it goes from here."