Foreign Service Diplomatic Courier — World Wide

Announcement No: DCS-2015-0001
Position Title: Diplomatic Security: FOREIGN SERVICE DIPLOMATIC COURIER
Open Period: 2/25/2015 – 3/10/2015
Series/Grade: FP-06
Salary: $39,166-$57,517
Promotion Potential: FE-OC Locations: Various locations around the World, WW


The duties of a Diplomatic Courier can vary according to the requirements of each mission. Diplomatic Couriers are required to safeguard and escort diplomatic pouches containing classified and sensitive material between U.S. diplomatic missions and the Department of State. Diplomatic Couriers are entrusted with ensuring the inviolability of diplomatic pouches and their safe and secure delivery throughout the world. They operate under the auspices of international agreements and treaties as governed by the Vienna Convention. They are responsible for complying with Department of State policies, regulations and implementing the strict security procedures that define the control and movement of U.S. diplomatic pouches internationally and within the United States. Diplomatic Couriers spend a substantial portion of their careers living and working overseas in a nearly constant travel status using conveyances to include passenger and cargo aircraft, trucks, trains, and ships.

Couriers are responsible for the security of the Department of State’s Courier-accompanied diplomatic pouch operations worldwide. Diplomatic Courier duties may include the supervision of subordinate staff and the actual performance of some, or all, of the following functions:

  1. Serve as a Diplomatic Courier for the Department of State and other US government agencies that may need to transmit official, government classified or sensitive materials across international boundaries. Identify needed logistical support; provision for the storage or staging of pouches; detect and bring to resolution the cause and impact of delays or other logistical problems; adjust plans and schedules for all related actions to accommodate timely and secure movement of pouches.
  2. Develop, plan, and implement pouch escort programs and schedules; assess the efficiency and effectiveness of operations and provide practical solutions when problems arise; ensure the proper allocation and expenditure of appropriated funds; provide timely and appropriate pouch delivery and dispatch services to posts worldwide. Other responsibilities include maintaining internal management controls in order to prevent waste, fraud and mismanagement.
  3. Assist in labor intensive duties, including warehouse duties, sorting and moving heavy pouches, packing materials, escort missions, and working with the cargo crew to move heavy pouches on airport tarmacs.
  4. Manage, regulate, coordinate, or otherwise exercise control over the pouch material. This includes initial planning, provisioning and determining handling and accountability, and oversight of physical accountability (maintenance and management of inventory records, conduct of periodic inventories, and releases from accountability).
  5. Plan, coordinate and implement travel and pouch transportation support needs domestically and at posts serviced worldwide, including motor vehicle operations and needs, issuance of travel orders, and ticketing for commercial and military air and surface transportation. Evaluate, negotiate, and participate in awarding contracts with commercial organizations and other government agencies involved in provision of, or support of, travel and transportation.
  6. Enforce Department of State pouch regulations required to ensure the inviolability of diplomatic pouches from the point of origination to international destinations as governed by the Vienna Convention.
  7. Assess risks to movement of diplomatic pouches and sealed official diplomatic cargo; detect and report attempts to damage or subvert the principle of inviolability of the diplomatic pouches and cargo.
  8. Conduct, administer and implement diplomatic pouch security training and training assistance programs for US foreign affairs personnel, and officials of designated foreign governments.


Applicants must have at least an Associate’s level degree or 60 credit hours from an accredited college or university at the time of appointment. Official transcripts must confirm the Associate’s degree or the accredited 60 credit hours. An official transcript from the accredited college or university that confirms award of the degree or 60 credit hours is required prior to appointment.


  1. Applicants with 18 credit hours of undergraduate level study in addition to an Associate’s level degree may substitute that academic achievement for one year of general experience.
  2. A Bachelors degree from an accredited university may be substituted for two years of general experience.


Three years of work experience with progressively increasing responsibility. Experience should demonstrate that the candidate has the ability to analyze problems, gather pertinent information and data, plan and organize work, form solutions, implement action, and communicate effectively both orally and in writing. Although not a requirement, fluency in a foreign language is desirable.


Specialized experience must demonstrate that the applicant has acquired and is able to apply a combination of specific knowledge, skills and abilities appropriate to a Foreign Service Diplomatic Courier position. Examples are:

  1. Experience in office operations in a government agency or a business, or an industrial firm servicing a client or client organization, demonstrating initiative, ingenuity, resourcefulness and judgment required to organize, implement and accomplish tasks;
  2. The ability to think logically and objectively, to analyze and evaluate facts, and to apply sound judgment in assessing the practical implications of solutions such as those required for negotiating contracts, and scheduling services or production runs;
  3. Responsibility for planning and scheduling resource needs, or organizing requirements for deliverables;
  4. Experience preparing written and oral reports and presentation of findings in a clear and concise manner;
  5. Interpersonal skills, including cultural sensitivity, discretion, tact, and capacity for obtaining the cooperation and confidence of others during team efforts and when supervising; and
  6. Experience scheduling airline and other transportation. Dealings with routing practices and customs processes, or with agents or officials involved in transporting materials across international boundaries, is also credited.

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