USA Flag

Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Objectives & Benefits

Career Toolbox

The purpose of TSA's Career Planning Guide is to introduce you to the tools and services that are available to help you set and achieve your career goals.

By reading this guide you will:

  • Understand TSA's Career Planning Policy and the six steps in the TSA Career Planning Process;
  • Become familiar with the tools and resources that support completion of the steps in the Career Planning Process;
  • Understand and be able to distinguish between the roles and responsibilities of supervisors and those of employees in creating Career Plans;
  • Understand what the TSA Career Plan is and is not;
  • Be able to create your draft Career Plan prior to having a career discussion with your supervisor; and
  • Be prepared to discuss your Career Plan with your supervisor and make adjustments as circumstances change.

Benefits of Career Planning

TSA is a performance-based culture where each employee recognizes the importance of his or her individual contributions to protecting the security of the nation's transportation systems. At TSA, having employees set career goals and engage in career discussions with their supervisors is a win-win strategy. Employees see that TSA actively supports professional growth and development. In return, TSA retains employees who are motivated to consistently improve their skills.

Why should you take the time to plan your career? It is your career. If you do not take responsibility for the success of your career, then who will? Besides, considering all the time and energy you spend at work, why not ensure that you get maximum satisfaction from your work and your career?

The U. S. public and private sector workplaces have been affected by a number of significant changes and trends, which have definite ramifications for career planning:

  • Rapid technology advances: Rapid advancements in technology and state-of-the-art knowledge create new employment opportunities every day. These advances require employees to upgrade their skills and retool themselves frequently to remain current with new job requirements.
  • Up is not the only way: With fewer management positions and flattened organizational structures, the traditional linear career patterns will be less available. You will need to be more flexible, adaptable and creative in identifying your career goals. You should consider taking on new challenges in your current job, lateral moves or rotational assignments to broaden your experience and increase your career satisfaction.
  • Declining job security: Increased pressures to reduce costs, downsize, restructure, outsource, or automate will continue to eliminate or drastically alter many once secure jobs. In this environment, continually improving your professional skill set is your best assurance of professional growth and employability.

It is definitely to your advantage to position yourself for long-term employability and to keep your skills updated in the rapidly changing world of work. Begin preparing now for your future.

Continue to next section, How to Make the Best Use of This Guide or return to the TSA Career Planning Guide Table of Contents.

Latest revision: 27 December 2012