How to Get a State Job
(Printable PDF version)
Information regarding employment with the State of California including the State
Application Form (Form 678) is available online at the State Personnel Board’s website:
The Examination Process
Before you can be appointed to a permanent position, you must first take an examination to obtain list eligibility. Permanent hires originate from the eligibility lists created by
examining. Examination bulletins contain information which you will need to review to
ensure you meet the minimum qualifications to take the examination. If you meet the
requirements on an examination bulletin, you may take the examination, which is competitive.
However, possession of the entrance requirements does not assure a place on the eligible
OSHPD conducts continuous testing for each of these difficult to recruit
- District Structural Engineer
- Fire and Life Safety Officer I and II
- Senior Architect
- Senior Structural Engineer
Please see OSHPD’s Administrative Services Division exams web page for examination bulletins and instructions on how to apply for available positions.
View Tutorial - Taking an Exam, Part 1 - Finding the Official Exam Bulletin
Obtaining List Eligibility
There are several different types of examinations. Depending on the classification, you can
take either of these exam types:
- Oral interview
- Education and experience based examination
- A combination examination consisting of any of the above having more than one type of examination plan
Your performance in the required examination will be compared with the performance of the others
who take the exam, and all candidates who pass will be ranked according to their scores.
You will need to be successful in all parts of the examination to obtain list eligibility.
The examination bulletin will indicate which type of examination is being administered.
Once You Have Obtained List Eligibility
Successful candidates are divided into ranks by score. Only those in the top three ranks
are "reachable" and ready for appointment. As the ranks are cleared, the next lowest rank
Applying For Jobs
Once you are in the top three ranks, you are "reachable" and eligible to apply for job
vacancies. Even if you are in a lower rank, don’t worry. Sometimes there are only a few
candidates in the first couple of ranks and once they get jobs you move up!
There are several ways to obtain vacancy information. Contact letters are sent to those
that are reachable and ready for a job. Because the eligible list has more candidates than
needed for the interview, there is a random computer selection program to choose the
candidates that will receive a job inquiry. In essence, not all candidates in a reachable
rank will receive a contact letter for every vacancy. You can also look for your own
vacancy using Vacancy Search (VPOS) or Jobs.ca.gov on the State Personnel Board’s website.
If you fail to reply or have declined one job inquiry (contact letter), your name is placed
"Inactive" for that list so it is important to respond to all inquiries. Should you decline or not respond to three inquiries, your name is removed from the eligibility list.
View Tutorial - How to Apply for Job Vacancies
Getting An Interview
Once you have replied to the job inquiry or sent your application to an advertised vacancy,
you may be offered a job interview. The interview is designed to identify the best
job/person match for that position only. Unless you are offered the job, your name stays on
the eligibility list for interest in other vacancies.
You Are Now A State Employee!
All newly appointed state employees participate in a probation period which is usually 6-12
months depending on the job classification. During this time you will receive training
related to your position and receive regular evaluations tracking how well you are doing
on the job. Most employees successfully pass the probationary period and become permanent
staff. However, those who are not doing a good job should expect to be terminated before
the end of the probationary period.
If you would like additional information regarding employment with the Office of Statewide
Health Planning and Development’s Facilities Development Division (FDD), please contact an FDD Personnel Liaison at (916) 440-8450 or (916) 440-8452, or e-mail us at FDDPersonnel@oshpd.ca.gov.
Need a copy of the "Examination and/or Employment Application" (form Std. 678) that
you can print and use to apply for a vacancy? Click here.
For aditional information, please e-mail us at FDDPersonnel@oshpd.ca.gov.