Application Submittal and Interview Requirements
To be considered for a vacancy with the State of California, a candidate must have established eligibility for the classification. Job vacancy announcements and contact letters will describe how a candidate should apply. The hiring department will contact applicants if they are selected for an interview.
Job connection for State of California retirees interested in working as retired annuitants.
The examination bulletin includes the details for an individual classification or a group of related classes examination. The bulletin will include directions and details for the examination, how to apply, the admittance requirements, test type, and how the resultant eligibility list will be used. Use the Find an Exam/Vacancy link on the homepage.
Career Credits can be earned by permanent State civil service employees who have passed probation for open, non promotional examinations. The exam bulletin will specify whether or not Career Credits will be applied in the examination.
Career Executive Assignments (CEA)
Government Code Section 18547 defines Career Executive Assignment as "an appointment to a high administrative and policy influencing position within the State civil service in which the incumbent's primary responsibility is the managing of a function or the rendering of management advice to top level administrative authority". Such a position can be established only in the top managerial levels of State service and is typified by broad responsibility for policy implementation and extensive participation in policy evolvement.
The administration of government in which individuals are employed on the basis of professional merit as proven by competitive examinations.
Each classification has a job specification that includes the definition of the job, typical tasks, minimum qualifications (education, experience, and/or other factors), knowledge and abilities, and special personal characteristics required.
Term used to describe a passing score received on an examination. In order to apply for employment with the State of California, list eligibility must be established for the classification. List eligibility is typically one year in length; however, for some examinations, list eligibility could be up to four years. When list eligibility expires, an applicant must reapply to re-establish eligibility.
An eligible list is a list of individuals with eligibility who can be considered for employment. Generally, the top three ranks (highest scores) are considered reachable and will be contacted first. The length of eligibility is listed as the “List Life” on the examination bulletin. Typically, eligibility is good for one year, but may be extended for up to four years. One must then retake the examination to re-establish list eligibility.
These Position are filled by election or appointment. They include members of boards and commissions, and appointees of the Governor. These officials are exempt from State civil service, and are often referred to as "exempt" officials.
Details about minimum qualifications, education, etc.
Limited Examination Appointment Program (LEAP)
LEAP is an alternate selection process designed to facilitate the recruitment and hiring of persons with disabilities, and to provide them with an alternative way to demonstrate their qualifications for employment than the traditional State civil service examining process.
The length of time eligibility is in effect is listed as the “list life” on the examination bulletin. List life is typically 12 months and may be extended up to four years.
The education, experience, and/or other requirements needed to compete in an examination.
Open and Promotional Exams
Open exams are open to both State employees and individuals who are not employed by the State. Promotional exams are only open to State employees and veterans.
The period during which an employee demonstrates his/her ability to perform the job duties. After a job offer is accepted, an employee must pass probation to become a permanent State employee. For every classification, the probationary period can be either six months or twelve months. During this period, the manager/supervisor assesses the skills or knowledge the employee needs to develop and the guidance needed for an employee to succeed. An employee must demonstrate acceptable progress and the capabilities to fully perform at the expected level to pass probation.
Each State agency is required by Federal and State law to provide reasonable accommodation(s) when a job applicant or employee with a disability needs assistance in order to complete a selection process, perform the essential functions of a job, complete required training, or to benefit from employer sponsored events. The purpose of the accommodation(s) is to allow the person with the disability to compete or perform on as equal a basis as possible with persons without disabilities. This does not mean lodging accomodations.
Retired annuitants are individuals who have retired from the State, but who have returned to work for the State on a temporary basis.
California Code of Regulations, Section 211, provides that a State employee dismissed by adverse action may participate in State civil service examinations only if he or she has obtained prior approval from the State Personnel Board's Executive Officer. Requests to participate in open examinations must be submitted in writing to the State Personnel Board. The decision to approve or deny a request to participate in an examination is based on the circumstances surrounding the dismissal as well as the type of position the dismissed employee is seeking. In addition, the State Personnel Board considers the employee's evidence of corrected behavior, and his/her ability to assume the responsibilities and duties associated with a return to State service. Dismissed State employees do not have reinstatement eligibility and may not apply for vacant positions. Dismissed State employees may seek access to employment within the State civil service system only under the provisions of Section 211 described previously.
Reemployment [See State Restriction of Appointment (SROA)/Reemployment]
Scoring and Ranking
Exam results are scored and applicants are placed in ranks according to their scores. Generally, only the first three ranks of individuals are accessible for hire. An individual’s ranking may change as hires are made and/or more individuals are added to the eligibility list.
State Restriction of Appointment (SROA)/Reemployment
The surplus/SROA process helps prevent layoffs. When employees are facing layoffs, they go on a surplus/SROA list. Employees then have 120 days to find a new job. If, at the end of that time, they are actually laid off, they go on a reemployment list for their class. A department must hire employees from their department's reemployment list if one exists for the hiring class. If not, the department must contact any eligible surplus/SROA employees.
Submittal and Interview
To be considered for a vacancy with the State of California, a candidate must have established eligibility for the classification. Some departments send out contact letters to individuals who have eligibility for a vacancy. Sometimes only a sampling of individuals with eligibility for that classification will be sent a contact letter. The contact letter includes instructions on how to apply for the vacancy.
Take and Successfully Pass
After participation in the examination, results will be provided to you, including a final score and the number of months of list eligibility. After successful participation, you can apply for job vacancies within that classification.
Training and Development Assignment (T&D)
T&D assignments allow the temporary loan or assignment of employees within or between units or programs for periods not to exceed two years, for the purposes of training. T&D assignments are used to broaden the work experience of an employee with the intent of increasing their skills and abilities and/or work experience.
Written Test: Typically consists of multiple-choice questions.
Oral Interview, also known as a "Qualifications Appraisal Panel (QAP)": Facing a panel of two to three people, a candidate responds to questions regarding education and experience, possibly situational/hypothetical scenarios.
Internet/Automated Examination: On-line examination where a candidate responds to education and experience questions, or schedules to appear at a test site to take a computer-based test.
Performance Test: Primarily used for clerical and trades classifications, a candidate demonstrates knowledge of tools and materials or the ability to operate machines or equipment.
Supplemental Application/Achievement Rating Test: The examination consists of essay questions sent to a candidate completed and returned before the oral portion of the examination to provide supplemental information to assist the interview panel.
Education and Experience Evaluation: The examination consists of an evaluation of a candidate's application; no interview is conducted.
Agility/Physical Ability: For law enforcement and other jobs, physical ability tests are commonly given and are frequently combined with vision and hearing tests. These are usually given just prior to hiring.
A job vacancy is an unfilled job opening for which departments/agencies are actively trying to recruit new employees.
Veterans' Preference Points
Veterans' Preference Points are awarded in open, and open non-promotional entrance exams. The exam bulletin will specify whether or Veterans' Preference Points apply to the examination.
VPOS (Vacant Positions)
VPOS is the State Personnel Board’s job vacancy search engine.