Police Officer

Recruitment #CCT-Q002-059729


The City and County of San Francisco invites you to join a highly respected police department and serve the citizens of one of the most beautiful cities in the country.  San Francisco Police Officers perform a wide variety of duties to promote public safety and security, prevent crime and enforce the law.  Police officers perform a number of essential functions.  For example, they patrol districts to prevent and detect crime; respond to calls for assistance; conduct criminal investigations; interact with the community to build cooperation and support; pursue and arrest suspects; enforce traffic and parking laws; write reports and maintain records; work with superiors, peers, and others as a team; prepare for and participate in planned events; prepare for court and give testimony; and fulfill other administrative duties when required.  This is much more than a job; it is an opportunity to build a career of which you can be proud.  


Working Conditions and Benefits  


A Police Officer works 40 hours per week on different shifts and overtime may be required.  San Francisco offers excellent benefits and the current starting salary is $88,842 per year.  After five years of service a Police Officer may earn up to $118,898 per year.  You will receive comprehensive training, at your full starting salary, which includes 31 weeks at the Police Academy prior to field training at one of the district stations.  

Minimum Qualifications



This examination is open to individuals meeting all of the following requirements:

  • Be a United States citizen
  • Be at least 20 years old
  • Be a U.S. High School Graduate or have passed a G.E.D. or the California High School Proficiency Examination or have an AA or higher degree from an accredited college or university
  • Possess a valid driver license
  • Have not been convicted of a felony
  • Have not been convicted of an offense involving domestic violence
  • Have not have been convicted of any misdemeanor at any time, which carries a penalty of prohibiting ownership, possession or control of a firearm.
  • Have not been restricted from employment with the City and County of San Francisco

Selection Plan



As a first step, select an e-mail address you will maintain throughout the examination process to receive all official communications. Then follow the next steps to begin your application:

  • Click on “Apply” at the top of the job announcement , then read and acknowledge the information
  • Select either “I am a New User” if you have not previously registered, or “I have Registered Previously”
  • Follow instructions on the screen

Computer kiosks are available for the public (from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday) to file online applications in the lobby of the Department of Human Resources at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor, San Francisco.

Upon successful submittal of the application online, you will receive an e-mail acknowledging the receipt of the application. If you have any questions regarding submitting your application online, please contact Jen Lo by email to Jen.Lo@sfgov.org.

The Written Examination was developed by the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) and measures reading comprehension and writing abilities. No inspection of questions and answers is allowed.

A sample written examination may be accessed on the following web site: www.post.ca.gov.


Applicants who possess a current California POST Basic, Intermediate, or Advanced Certificate will be exempt from the written test. A copy of the POST Certificate must be submitted with your application. Basic Police Academy completion certificates will not waive candidates from the written test unless the certificate states a t-score of 46 or higher within the last two years.


 Applicants who have taken the POST written within the last two years and have achieved a t-score of 46 or higher will also be exempt from the written examination. A copy of the documentation which includes the date of the POST test and score on valid agency letterhead must be submitted with your application.


 Applicants requesting exemption from the written examination must submit the required certificate or documentation with their applications by the filing deadline. Applicants who do not submit the required certificate or documentation will be required to take the written examination.


Applicants may submit their t-scores or California POST Certificates by fax or email.

  • Fax number (415) 557-4967, Attn: Jen Lo
  • Email to Jen.Lo@sfgov.org, Subject line: Q2 Police Officer Written Exam Exemption

Candidates who pass the POST written examination or are exempt from the written examination will be placed on the eligible list in the order of their written score. Candidates exempt from the written examination based on a current California POST Basic, Intermediate or Advanced Certificate will be awarded a written score of 100. Candidates will remain on the eligible list for a period of twelve (12) months or until they are selected to a permanent position, whichever comes first.


Placement on the eligible list does not guarantee nor imply that you will be offered employment. The City and County of San Francisco reserves the right to hire only the most suitably qualified candidates for this extremely important position.



Certification Rule

The certification rule for the eligible list resulting from this examination is Rule of the List. All candidates will be placed under administrative waiver until they successfully complete the Departmental Selection Process described below.




The Police Department will administer additional selection processes to select the most suitable candidates from the eligible list. The additional selection processes include: Oral Interview and Writing Sample, Physical Ability Examination, Personal History Questionnaire Evaluation, Background Investigation, Polygraph Examination, Psychological Examination, and Medical Examination.


The Oral Interview and Writing Sample will evaluate the applicant’s interpersonal skills, problem solving, oral and written communication skills and abilities not tested by other examination components. The Oral Interview and Writing Sample are not scored; however, the rating panelists will make recommendations regarding who should proceed in the final hiring process.


The Physical Ability Examination will measure physical performance through a series of exercises that will be administered on a pass/fail basis.


Only those candidates who successfully complete the oral interview/performance exercise and physical ability examination will continue in the testing process.


Personal History Questionnaire (PHQ) Evaluation is a survey in a multiple-choice format, which solicits information regarding each applicant’s background and criminal history. The PHQ identifies those candidates who appear most likely to pass the full background investigation.


The Employment, Character, and Background Investigation consists of a thorough study of the candidate's history prior to appointment to determine fitness for this employment. Reasons for rejection include use of controlled substances, felony convictions, repeated or serious violations of the law, inability to work cooperatively with co-workers, inability to accept supervision, or other relevant factors.


A Review of Judicial and Driving Records will be conducted for all candidates. Candidates must possess and maintain a valid driver license to operate an automobile at the time of application and throughout the selection process. Candidates must give a full and complete listing of all motor vehicle violations on their background forms. Driving records will be obtained from the Department of Motor Vehicles. Any significant discrepancy between the candidate's statement and Department of Motor Vehicles records will be cause for disqualification.


The following misdemeanor violations may be cause for rejection if they occurred within the past three years immediately prior to the date of application and extending to the time of appointment: drunk driving; reckless driving; hit and run with personal injury or hit and run with property damage; other violation(s) indicating individual disregard for safe vehicle operation.


Candidates who incur negligent operator probation or license suspension at any time within one year prior to the date of application will be disqualified. The same is true for candidates who incur license suspension or operator probation at any time from the date of application to the date of appointment. Two moving violation convictions in the last 24 months or three moving violation convictions in the last 36 months may be cause for rejection.


A Polygraph Examination will be used to verify the veracity and accuracy of information submitted by candidates regarding, but not necessarily limited to: use of controlled substances; driving, criminal, medical and employment history; and other job-related factors.


Testing for Use of Controlled Substances is required. Any illegal use of controlled substances after the date of application is a mandatory cause for rejection. Any use of controlled substances after the date of application may be cause for rejection. Rejection for prior use of controlled substance(s) is based on the type of substance(s) used and the frequency and recency of such usage. All information submitted by candidates regarding the use of controlled substances will be reviewed during the polygraph examination.


The Psychological Examination consists of written tests and a clinical interview to determine the candidate's fitness/suitability for police work.


The Medical Examination consists of a rigorous medical screening and is currently provided by Occupational Health Services at San Francisco General Hospital. Each candidate will be individually evaluated and any current or past medical condition that is likely to compromise the candidate's ability to perform the essential functions of the position may be cause for rejection. Height and weight guidelines will be strictly adhered to. The Police Department Physician will evaluate the results of the initial medical examination to determine the candidate's fitness for employment as a Police Officer. The medical examination includes the taking of blood and urine samples.


Vision Testing is required prior to appointment. If correction is necessary, corrective lenses must be available at the time of the test. While each situation will be evaluated on an individual basis, all candidates must have a visual acuity of 20/30 either unaided or corrected by eyeglasses or contact lenses. Visual testing will be done using binocular vision only. If eyeglasses or hard contact lenses are worn, uncorrected binocular vision must be at least 20/100. If soft contact lenses are worn, there is no limitation on the uncorrected vision, provided the wearer has successfully worn these soft lenses for at least six months. All candidates must have entirely full visual fields and must achieve a passing score on a color vision test. Applicable tests must be taken without squinting. Color vision deficiencies may be cause for rejection.


Hearing Testing is also required. Loss of hearing may be disqualifying. The uncorrected auditory threshold for each ear in the frequencies of 500 to 600 Hz should be 25 db or less.




Candidates must pass each of the selection components unless otherwise noted on the announcement. The Department reserves the right to waive selection components for individuals based on prior experience or certification.


Candidates who possess a current POST certificate and have two years of patrol experience may be placed in abbreviated academy and FTO training programs. These candidates may also start at a salary step higher than the entry level.


Upon successful completion of the FTO program, candidates with a verified Intermediate or Advanced POST certificate may apply for a salary upgrade.


Candidates who are rejected for hire based upon a history of controlled substance abuse, psychological testing and/or background factors are not eligible to reapply for two (2) years from the date of their disqualification. The Police Department reserves the right to disqualify individuals who have previously been rejected for hire based upon conditions that are not subject to change, e.g., non-correctable medical conditions, felony convictions, controlled substance abuse. Additionally, the Department may reject, within a two (2) year period from final disqualification, individuals who have previously been rejected for hire based upon psychological testing or background factors. Final disposition, in the instance of an appeal of disqualification, shall be that date on which all administrative remedies have been exhausted.


Eligibles are limited to one (1) waiver of appointment. If you are offered employment and you do not reply or are unwilling to accept the offer, you will remain under waiver on the eligible list.


Qualified applicants with a disability requiring special accommodation to participate in this examination process must notify the DHR Public Safety Examinations Team at (415) 551-8946 as soon as possible.


Applicants/eligibles must maintain current contact information. Applicants may change their contact information by going online to www.jobaps.com/sf and selecting the “Update My Contact Info” tab.


 Applicants are advised to keep copies of all documents submitted during the examination and background processes.


 To be eligible for Veteran’s Preference, an applicant must have served on active duty (non-reserve duty) and been released from active duty under conditions other than dishonorable. Applicants who served in the military after January 31, 1955 for at least 181 consecutive days of active duty prior to discharge may be eligible for Veteran’s Preference. Applicants who served prior to this date or who served in time of war or during an expedition for service in which a medal was authorized by the government of the United States may also be eligible. Widows/widowers or surviving domestic partners of deceased eligible veterans may also qualify for Veteran’s Entitlement credit. In order to be considered for Veteran’s Preference, applicants must submit a copy of their Form DD214 or other acceptable documentation and complete a City and County of San Francisco Veteran’s Preference Application. Widows/widowers or surviving domestic partners must also provide documentation of relationship to deceased veteran, and the veteran’s death certificate. Individuals who have received permanent appointment with the City and County of San Francisco from an eligible list and who successfully completed the required probationary period are not eligible for Veteran’s Preference Points.


 Micki Callahan, Director Human Resources
Department of Human Resources
Announcement No.: CCT-Q002-059729

Issued: November 26, 2012
E-129 (1)
Public Safety Team, JLo

Disaster Service Workers

All City and County of San Francisco employees are designated Disaster Service Workers through state and local law (California Government Code Section 3100-3109). Employment with the City requires the affirmation of a loyalty oath to this effect. Employees are required to complete all Disaster Service Worker-related training as assigned, and to return to work as ordered in the event of an emergency.


All employees hired on or after January 10, 2009 will be required (pursuant to San Francisco Charter Section A8.432) to contribute 2% of pre-tax compensation to fund retiree healthcare. In addition, most employees are required to make a member contribution towards retirement, typically a 7.5% of compensation. For more information on these provisions, please contact the personnel office of the hiring agency.

For more information about benefits, please click here.

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