Protocol Specialist

U.S. Department of Defense
  • Location
    Arlington, Virginia
  • Sector
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Nov 09

Position description

This position is part of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency. DSCA's mission is to advance U.S. national security and foreign policy interests by building the capacity of foreign security forces to respond to shared challenges. DSCA leads the broader U.S. security cooperation enterprise in its efforts to train, educate, advise, and equip foreign partners. DSCA administers security cooperation programs that support U.S. policy interests and objectives.

Learn more about this agency


As a Protocol Specialist at the GS-0301-12/13 some of your typical work assignments may include:

  • Serves as the Agency Protocol Officer, with full responsibility for planning, evaluating, developing, coordinating, and personally overseeing all aspects of the protocol program.
  • Serves as the subject matter expert (SME) the incumbent is responsible for providing advice, guidance, and assistance on all protocol, customs, courtesies, and proper etiquette for official visits by high-level U.S. and foreign dignitaries to include meetings, events, ceremonies, and social engagements.
  • Analyzes and evaluates the planning of all official/social functions and events.
  • Develops Standard Operating Procedures, event guides, and country-specific customs guides for Agency and sub-Component use to facilitate event planning and routine engagement.
  • Maintains and manages the acquisition, storage, accountability and use of all protocol support equipment, to include country-specific, service-specific flags and pins, linens, tableware, U.S. nostalgia, and a substantial inventory of special event dinnerware and perishables.


Travel Required

Occasional travel - You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status


Promotion Potential



Conditions of Employment

  • Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered for Selective Service
  • Resume and supporting documents (See How To Apply)
  • Suitable for Federal employment, determined by a background investigation
  • May be required to successfully complete a probationary period
  • Work Schedule: Full Time
  • Overtime: Occasionally
  • Tour of Duty: Flexible
  • Recruitment/Relocation/Retention Incentives for non-federal service credit for leave maybe authorized
  • Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA): Exempt
  • Financial Disclosure: Required
  • Telework Eligibility: This position is telework eligible
  • This is a drug testing designated position
  • Work may require travel away from the normal duty station on military or commercial aircraft
  • May be required to work other than normal hours, which may include evening, weekends, and/or holidays and/or overtime
  • Must obtain/maintain Non-critical Sensitive/Secret security clearance


You may qualify at the GS-12 level if you fulfill the following qualifications:

One year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-11 grade level in the Federal service:

  • Assisting with official protocol functions that relate to customs and practices of high level military, civilian, US and foreign dignitaries. 
  • Developing detailed plans for each events such as scope of visit/event, displaying appropriate flags, ceremonial arrangements, planning social functions/receptions and office calls with higher level dignitaries.

You may qualify at the GS-13 level if you fulfill the following qualifications: 

One year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-12 grade level in the Federal service:

  • Overseeing and leading various action groups in executing protocol for high level events.
  • Preparing agency wide policies and procedures governing all facets of planning official and social events and managing the acquisition, storage and accountability and use of all protocol equipment such as country specific flags/pins, linens, tableware.

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.


Substitution of education may not be used in lieu of specialized experience for this grade level.

Application instructions

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