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Hiring Process

Applications are submitted electronically through our website. Be sure to read the directions closely and complete the application completely and accurately. Any questions about the application should be directed to Human Resources.
Written Exam

Once your application is received you will be invited to take the online City of Sacramento Entry Level Law Enforcement Exam within seven (7) days of the job posting's close date. The written exam is administered through the City of Sacramento Human Resources Department and is unique to the City of Sacramento, although it tests the same dimensions as the California POST PELLETB exam. For test preparation please review the practice guide published by POST. Any questions about the written exam should be directed to Human Resources.

If you have previously taken one of the following exams within two years of the final filing date and earned a passing score as listed below, you may be considered exempt from the Entry Level Law Enforcement Exam.

  • P.O.S.T. Certified Entry Level Law Enforcement Test Battery (PELLETB) exam and earned a T-Score of 45 or higher
  •  National Testing Network's (NTN) Law Enforcement- Frontline National exam and earned a reading score of 70% or higher AND a writing score of 70% or higher
  •  City of Sacramento Entry Level Law Enforcement Exam and earned a passing score

For more information on the written test and exemption process please view the attached FAQ.

Pre-Employment Questionnaire
After successful completion of the pre-screen questionnaire, you will be given numerous documents to complete.  This will include the Personal History Statement, which is an extensive collection of past residences, acquaintances, and employment information.  You will bring your completed documentation to a Questionnaire session.  During the session you will complete a short essay and a detailed background questionnaire.  The questionnaire will cover personal relationships, group affiliations, financial history, employment history, driving history, and illegal conduct (detected and undetected).  All responses will be verified through background investigation and polygraph examination.  
Oral Panel Interview
The Oral Panel interview is the first time you will meet with a Police Department Representative.  You will spend about thirty minutes answering a series of questions designed to evaluate your suitability for the position. We will evaluate your ability to communicate, your level of preparation, and decision making. 
Physical Agility Test
Prior to assignment to a background investigator, you will be required to pass a physical agility test.  We administer the POST Work Sample Test Battery as the physical agility test, with a passing score of 384 points.  We do not accept WSTB scores from other agencies.  You can find a description of the tests, sample score sheets, and suggested workouts in our physical agility guide
Background Investigation
The background investigation is a very thorough investigation into your past and current conduct, relationships, and employment.  An average background investigation can take 3-6 weeks.  You will be expected to provide your investigator with needed documentation in a timely and complete manner.  Dishonesty or omission of information will be cause for disqualification.
Polygraph Examination
As part of your background investigation you will be required to submit to a polygraph examination.  The examination is another tool used to verify an applicant’s truthfulness through the process.
Conditional Job Offer
After clearing a background investigation you may be invited to an interview with the hiring authority, usually a Deputy Chief.  This is a formal job interview, after which a conditional job offer may be extended.
Psychological Exam
Applicants with a conditional job offer will be sent to a psychological examination with a doctor prior to employment. 
Medical Exam
Applicants with a conditional job offer will be sent to a medical doctor for a medical screening prior to employment. 
Applicants with a conditional job offer who pass the Psychological and Medical Exams, and who do not already have a California Basic Post academy certificate, may be offered a pre-hire position until the next academy begins. They will be paid at the Police Recruit rate while performing a variety of non-sworn tasks around the Department.
Employees hired as Police Recruits will attend the Department's paid 24-week Police Academy. Academies begin twice a year, in January and June, and provide the basic knowledge, skills, and physical fitness necessary for a career in law enforcement. Upon successful completion of the academy Police Recruits who meet the minimum requirements will be sworn in as Police Officers.



More detailed information on state standards and recommendations for police officer candidates can be found on the California P.O.S.T website.
If you have questions regarding the Sacramento Police Department hiring process, please e-mail the Recruiting Unit or call (916) 808-0880 (office) / (916) 234-6112 (mobile).