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Today, civilian contractors play an increasingly important role within global military operations. The Military employs the services of civilian contractors in order to relieve their own personnel from taking part in operations that will influence their mission success, but are ultimately tangential to the interests of their uniformed personnel. Though outsourcing duties to civilian contractors is by no means a recent development in military history, it is an increasingly popular option. For instance, the Continental Army during the American Revolution depended very heavily on civilian support for logistics.
Some History about where Civilian Contractor Jobs really started
Civilian contractors also played an important role in the first and second World Wars, though most of the responsibilities assigned to civilian contractors were on the home front. However, the Vietnam War brought about a massive change in military use of civilian contractors. Because military conflict was increasingly dependent upon specialized technology, the United States quickly discovered that its infrastructure and support technology needs required deployment and maintenance by persons with skill-sets that surpassed those of the common enlisted man. As a result, civilian contractors were brought in to Vietnam in droves in order to maintain and deploy crucial military equipment and infrastructure. Civilian contractors often found themselves near (and sometimes) at the front lines of conflict during the Vietnam War, and their services were essential to providing American troops with the support they needed.
Today, civilian contractors provide a huge amount of support for defense and military operations globally. Civilian contractors are employed by government agencies, military forces, and even private companies in order to carry out essential infrastructure support, logistics, security, and intelligence tasks. Civilian contractors are increasingly used in order to carry out necessary tasks in wartime or conflict environments. Civilian contractors that work in these conditions might find themselves in somewhat more danger than they might otherwise encounter. However hazard pay for these contractors working in ‘hot zones’ is extremely lucrative, offering salaries and benefits that easily double or triple what could be attained when working at home.
How Much Do Civilian Contractor Jobs Pay?
Broadly speaking civilian contractor jobs pay very well. There is a lucrative industry for knowledgeable professionals in civilian contractor roles. In particular, individuals with engineering degrees, or industry experience in infrastructure design and development, infrastructure construction, logistics, and transportation. In particular, many military organizations have found that using uniformed personnel to deal with issues such as base construction, electrical grid deployment, water filtration, sewage, and other infrastructure needs is simply wasteful – because it means that the military must spend time and money training personnel to complete tasks completely unrelated to their combat and reconnaissance needs. Hence, civilian contractors are in high demand to complete construction projects, manage supply chains, and to provide necessary installation and maintenance of infrastructure in both home-front military base situations, as well as in active war zones. In addition, military forces at home and abroad are always in need of contractors with technical expertise to provide training, troubleshooting, and maintenance services for complicated, sensitive military and defense equipment. Contractors that can provide tactical and technical training to military and security forces abroad are also in very high demand, particularly in countries where nation-building and democratization are currently in progress. However, there are always plenty of training jobs for civilian contractors in countries that are allied with the United States, given that these nations all look up to the United States for its technical prowess and superior expertise in defense technology and military operations. In training roles, civilian contractors will often be charged with constructing a training curriculum regarding technology or tactical operations. Then, they will be responsible for conducting classes with personnel.
Of course, a number of other civilian contractor jobs are available for construction projects at home and abroad. These jobs range from constructing buildings and other features at military bases and training grounds on the home front, to erecting temporary outposts and bases abroad during times of conflict. The latter type of jobs are absolutely essential to military success abroad, but do put civilian contractors at increased risk of injury. As a result, firms that supply civilian contractors offer contractors working in these conditions ‘hazard pay’ that is significantly more lucrative than typical pay. Even the least skilled civilian contractor working in a warzone can expect to make at least double their conventional salary, often for less working hours. Civilian contractors with former military or intelligence experience are very highly valued by military forces that depend on civilian contractors, and as such, individuals with honorable military discharges or experience working as a civilian for an intelligence agency are often extremely well compensated for contract work completed abroad and in war zones.
hazard pay for these contractors working in ‘hot zones’ is extremely lucrative, offering salaries and benefits that easily double or triple what could be attained when working at home
In addition, more and more military forces and defense contractors depend on private military corporations in order to provide security services at home and abroad. Private military corporations largely depend upon former military personnel for staffing. Their employees are outfitted with the necessary equipment to provide security to whichever government or private sector officials or resources that require protection. For instance, oilfield contractors working in potentially dangerous countries such as Libya, Afghanistan or Iraq rely heavily upon private military corporations to provide protection for their employees. Private military corporations are not mercenary groups – they do not take part in offensive military campaigns on behalf of governments. Instead, they function as an elite security detail, outfitted with personnel, equipment, and knowledge that rivals that of the best military units. The functions that these private civilian security contractors provide are numerous. Some will be assigned to carry out security and screening tasks at checkpoints near sensitive buildings, property, or resources that belong to a government, or to a private corporation. In other cases, they will be assigned to establish a security perimeter around visiting diplomats or company executives, thus acting as a shield that protects the VIP and their party from harm. Increasingly, private military corporations are being used to provide private companies as well as governments with the reconnaissance and information gathering expertise that they require in order to attain their goals. This latter facet of civilian contractor jobs is one of the fastest growing defense market segments.