How to Become a CIA Agent in Washington?

Becoming a CIA Agent may seem like a very glamorous job, thanks to the job’s depiction in popular culture. But the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is much more than you think. It is responsible for providing sensitive intelligence to the top state officials, including the President. Formed in 1947, the organization offers information and insights, along with providing tactical and strategic solutions for the US.

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Putting the nation’s security first, this institution has successfully thwarted countless threats to national security over the years. And still continues to do so, behind the scenes.

If you want to become a part of this prestigious agency in Washington, you need to follow a series of detailed steps. Because of the highly classified nature of the work associated with the CIA, the application process is a very lengthy one.

Before details and requirements of the application process, it is important to note that all CIA employees are recruited in Washington, DC metro area and are required to relocate here for their job if they are from another state.

Become a CIA Agent in Washington
How to Become a CIA Agent

Career Paths for CIA Agents in Washington

The first thing you need to be aware of when applying for the CIA is the five categories where you may be able to find your ideal career path:


Cyber Threat Analyst, Intelligence Collection Analyst, Targeting Analyst, etc


Staff Operations Officer, Paramilitary Operations Officer, Technical Targeting Analyst, etc


Data Scientist, Interactive Designer, Software Engineer, Physical and Technical Security Officer, etc

Enterprise & Support

Accountant, Clinical Psychologist, Polygraph Examiner, Contract Auditor, Logistics Officer, Graphic Designer, Cartographer, Education and Training Specialist, Human Resource Analyst, Administrative Professional, Support Integration Officer, etc

Foreign Language

Open Source Collection Officer, Sign Language Interpreter, Open Source Exploitation Officer, etc

Requirements to Become a CIA Agent in Washington

Let’s take a look at some general information you need to be aware of before you begin the application process:

  • All applicants must be US citizens
  • You should not apply if you are not physically present in the US
  • All positions are based in the Washington, DC metro area and some might require overseas travel
  • Be discreet about your application, even when talking to friends and family
  • You should not have any history of drug abuse in the last 12 months
  • You must depict the highest standards of conduct
  • You must clear a comprehensive security clearance, which will include a background investigation, a medical exam and a polygraph exam
  • You will have only three days to complete your application once you begin the process, so make sure you have all the required information with you beforehand

Steps to Become a CIA Agent in Washington

The application procedure is lengthy and detailed – so buckle up and remain vigilant throughout the process.

Step 1: Fill your Job Cart:

Review the jobs available on the CIA’s official website, and find the best fit for yourself. Make sure you are qualified for the jobs you shortlist for yourself. Go through the requirements for each position in great detail, before adding them to your ‘Job Cart’. You may add a maximum of four jobs to your Job Cart at a time.

Step 2:

Make an online account in the Career Application Center. You will have to choose a password for it. This account will be available for access for three days, while you complete your application. Review your Job Cart again. You may make changes to it, in case you feel the need to do so.

Step 3:

Complete the Application for Employment Form: This form would require you to provide the following information in detail and with complete honesty:

  • Basic background information
  • Work history
  • Areas of expertise
  • Certifications and licenses
  • Education
  • Foreign language proficiency levels
  • Foreign area knowledge
  • Military experience
  • Preferences
  • Other documents, such as writing samples and transcripts
Step 4: Complete the Personnel Evaluation Form:

This form would require you to provide the following information in complete detail and honesty:

  • Security clearance
  • Background investigation
  • Polygraph exam
  • Employment issues
  • Military discharge and disciplinary proceedings
  • Selective service enrollment
  • Drug use and activity
  • Any criminal convictions and violations of law
  • Delinquent federal debt
  • Peace Corps employment
Step 5 (Optional):

Fill the Equal Employment Opportunity Form: Filling out this form is a voluntary part of the application process.

Step 6:

Save and Print the Application: Once you have completed the entire application package, you should review all the details you have provided. Then you ought to save the application and get a print out, since you might need to refer to it at later stages.

Step 7:

Upload your personal information: This section will require you to provide your basic personal information, address, telephone number, etc. You may also upload your resume here. Make sure you have provided all supporting documents needed for the position(s) you are applying for.

Step 8:

Submit the Application Package: Once complete, you will see a ‘Submit Application Package’ button at the end of the page. Click on it and your application would be sent in for review by the recruitment officers. Within two business days of submitting the application, you will get a confirmation message in your account. You will need to log in to your account to confirm that your application has been received and you have been notified of it.

How much does a CIA Agent make in Washington?

The salary figures of CIA employees depend on the position they are hired for and the seniority level. Additional benefits are offered to all employees at the agency, including life, health, career and wealth benefits. Detailed information is available on the official website for the CIA.