Reference number: 3298-CSE(OC)2020
Closing Date: 2021-03-31    

About the Job

Communications Security Establishment (CSE) is Canada's national cryptologic agency. Unique within Canada's security and intelligence community, CSE employs code-makers, codebreakers, and secure system creators to provide the Government of Canada with information technology security (IT Security) and foreign signals intelligence (SIGINT) services. CSE is the national hub for cyber operations to defend Canada and advance national interests, and provides technical and operational assistance to federal law enforcement and security agencies.

CSE is currently looking for software developers to work in a dynamic and innovative operational environment. As a software developer, you will work on critical projects which will have a significant impact on Canada’s security posture (including IT Security and SIGINT) and ensuring the safety of Canadians.

We are looking for developers to constantly strive for better solutions to keep our country safe, seek to learn more about the cyber challenge around us, and collaborate with partners, colleagues, and teams on complex problems. You should be someone who enjoys a challenging career and desires to learn new technology to grow and evolve your expertise.


Salaries range from $78,001.00 to $105,060.00, depending on the level. These positions are currently eligible for a market allowance ranging from $8,366.36 to $12,103.35.

(More information under “Additional Details”.)


All jobs are in Ottawa, Ontario. This selection process will be used to staff positions within the Edward Drake Building (1929 Ogilvie Road) and the Cyber Centre (1625 Vanier Parkway).

Language Requirements

English Essential

Required Qualifications

You must clearly demonstrate in your application how you meet these required qualifications:


You must have either one of the following:

  • A University degree in a field related to the position, such as (but not limited to): Computer Science, Engineering (e.g. Computer, Software, Electrical), Mathematics
  • An acceptable combination of education (i.e. college diploma, professional certification) in a field related to the position (as above) and relevant experience.

The educational program must be recognized in Canada and you must be able to provide proof of education credentials. Students graduating within the next twelve (12) months are eligible to apply.


Programming experience (one or more the following: designing, developing, testing, deploying, maintaining, or improving software) with at least one modern language such as but not limited to Java, C, C++, Python, or modern web languages and frameworks.


? Competencies is our term for skills and/or knowledge. These required competencies are the skills/knowledge we need to see in your application, interviews, etc., for you to be successful.

Technical competencies

  1. Application Development

Knowledge and ability to design, define, develop, construct, enhance, support, and maintain application software on one or more platforms.

  1. Knowledge of Information Technology

Possesses a generalist’s knowledge of all areas in IT, including but not limited to: Software application development, data storage systems, IT security, IT architecture, system administration, networking, and telecommunications

Behavioural competencies

  1. Cognitive Thinking Skills

Responding to challenges with innovative solutions, products, or services by questioning conventional means, using intuition, experimentation & fresh perspectives; understanding, analyzing, synthesizing, and relating complex information and abstract variables.

  1. Working in a Team

Demonstrating effective interpersonal skills & working cooperatively and effectively within & across organizational units to achieve common goals.

Leadership competencies

  1. Change and Innovation

Create a culture where flexibility & openness to new ideas are encouraged. Lead transformation with courage & conviction.


  • Have no criminal record
  • Be a Canadian Citizen (dual citizens included)
  • Be eligible for a Top Secret security clearance
  • Be willing to comply with CSE’s own security policies and standards

Asset Qualifications

? Assets are “nice-to-have” expertise and competencies we are interested in. It is good if you have them, but please don’t let it stop you from applying if you think you don’t.

You should clearly demonstrate in your application any specialized expertise that apply to you, as it will be used to determine best fit within CSE.

Specialized Expertise

  • Knowledge of Cyber Security
  • Knowledge of Cloud Technologies
  • Knowledge of Modern Software Development Architectures
  • Knowledge of DevOps
  • Knowledge of Databases
  • Knowledge of Software Reverse Engineering
  • Knowledge of Vulnerability Research


Candidates may be assessed on one or more of the following asset competencies:

Technical competencies

  1. Knowledge of the Software Development Process
  2. Cyber Security
  3. Data Storage Design
  4. Data Administration & Management
  5. Infrastructure / Platforms
  6. Knowledge of Object-Oriented Programming
  7. Knowledge of the Quality Assurance Process
  8. Knowledge of Software Reverse Engineering
  9. Project Management
  10. System Integration
  11. Telecommunications (Data & Voice) Networks
  12. Web Design and Development
  13. Geospatial Systems Technology

Behavioural competencies

  1. Accountability/Autonomy
  2. Interactive Communication
  3. Service

Leadership competencies

  1. Achieving Results
  2. Collaboration
  3. Integrity, Respect & Awareness
  4. Lead & Motivate
  5. Strategy and Vision

Application Process

How to Apply

You may submit your candidacy online by clicking “APPLY” at the bottom of this page.

Please include two references (2 supervisors) at the bottom of your application. Failure to do so will result in your application being screened out of the selection process.

If you cannot apply online or have a disability preventing you from applying online, please inform us by contacting prior to the closing date.

What to Expect

  1. A written test will be administered to candidates who successfully pass the application review. It will be used as a screening tool. Make sure to check your spam/junk mailbox regularly for notification of the test.
  2. Interview(s) will follow for candidates who are successful on the written test. You can request that the process be conducted in the official language of your choice. CSE offers an assessment process which will accommodate any measures required to enable you to be assessed in a fair and equitable manner. Those measures are available to all candidates for further assessment. Related information received will be addressed confidentially. If you may need such accommodation, please advise us.
  3. References will only be contacted for candidates who have successfully completed the interview(s).
  4. Candidates will be required to complete the security process as part of the global assessment, which involves a security interview, a polygraph test, a psychological assessment, and a background investigation covering a minimum of your last 10 years history, including credit and financial verifications. Information regarding this process can be found on CSE's website.

The entire selection process – tests, interviews, security investigation – may take more than one year to complete.

If you are deemed to be unsuccessful in the assessment process for this particular selection process, you may reapply in twelve (12) months.

Additional Details

Salary Ranges & Allowances

? Market allowance is an additional pay on top of, but not part of, the yearly salary. It is negotiated through the collective bargaining process.
  • UNI-07 level:  $78,001.00 - $91,764.00 per year
  • UNI-08 level:  $83,250.00 - $97,942.00 per year
  • UNI-09 level:  $89,304.00 - $105,060.00 per year

These positions are currently eligible for a market allowance:

  • UNI-07 level:  $8,366.36 per year
  • UNI-08 level:  $11,000.62 per year
  • UNI-09 level:  $12,103.35 per year

Candidates are typically hired into entry level positions though exceptions can be made based on the level of experience and competency demonstrated during the selection process.

Candidates who do not meet all essential qualifications and competencies may be considered for an underfill. In which case, an individual development plan will be established for the successful candidate, depending on qualifications and experience of the employee.

Salary and market allowance are under review.


? A “determinate appointment” is employment for a specific period of time with a defined end date. An “indeterminate appointment” is permanent employment.

Determinate and indeterminate appointments will be used to staff positions of permanent or temporary tenures within CSE. All appointments have a one (1) year probation period.

Operational Requirements

Overtime and standby duty may be required.


CSE Employment

CSE is a separate organization and is not subject to the Public Service Employment Act (PSEA). The organization has its own values-based staffing regime and as such, has the flexibility to determine qualifications for positions and how these qualifications will be assessed in a selection process.

CSE is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We are committed to a diverse and representative workforce, an open and inclusive work environment and we encourage candidates to self-declare as members of the following designated employment equity groups: women, Aboriginal peoples, persons with disabilities (including learning disabilities, developmental disabilities and all other types of disabilities), and members of visible minority groups.

Training and Development

At CSE, we are proud to offer an inclusive and supportive working environment that encourages open minds and attitudes. As an organization that values and nurtures talent, we are committed to helping you fulfill your potential. With comprehensive training and development opportunities, tailored to your needs and the requirements of your work, we will enable you to flourish in your role and perform to the best of your abilities.

We thank all candidates for their interest in CSE. However, only those selected for further consideration will be contacted.