Preparedness

Police Officer and Public Safety Aide applicants must arrive at the test site between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. Communications Operator applicants must arrive at the test site between 11:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. All applicants must have their completed application and valid driver’s license. Police Officer applicants must also have their physical waiver.

Officer candidates should arrive in athletic attire. Public Safety Aide and Communications Operator candidates should arrive in business attire. Candidates should also bring a granola bar or something similar.

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10 Ways to be an outstanding candidate

10. Listen Carefully: be an active listener, especially during the interview process. Listen carefully to the questions asked and think before you respond. Take a few seconds to formulate a thoughtful, concise answer. Active listening is a valuable skill in these jobs.

9. Know yourself: know why you want to work in the profession, and how your background, skills, and aptitude indicate success in performing specific duties. We want to know your capability and potential to address the various issues and challenges faced in public safety today.

8. Candor & Sincerity: demonstrate sincerity, candor, integrity, and conviction. If you are not yourself, it will show! Avoid canned responses. We want to see who you are, how you think, and what you value!

7. Truthfulness: in all phases of the hiring process, be completely truthful and omit nothing asked of you. Everything you say or write in the entire process will be cross-compared. Untruthfulness in any form results in disqualification – and is the #1 reason candidates are eliminated from the hiring process! Integrity, honesty, and trustworthiness are the bedrock requirements of the public safety profession.

6. Professional business attire: dress and groom professionally and conservatively during the interview. Agency representatives are conservative, and expect professional, conservative dress and grooming. If you are unsure what conservative attire and grooming, ask someone who knows.

5. Punctuality: arrive at all appointments early. Develop a habit of being early. No reasons will be accepted for a late arrival. Anticipate any possible cause for delay. Accommodating a late arrival adversely affects the entire testing schedule and indicates poor time management skills on the part of the candidate

4. Knowledge of the occupation & department: applicants should have a solid knowledge of the specific duties and demands of the profession, as well as knowledge of the agency and the jurisdiction served. Good sources are the agency and city website, the agency’s annual report, talking to agency employees, friends in the profession, and ride-a-longs.

3. Follow Application Instructions: you must read and meticulously follow all instructions. Application and background forms must contain all required information. Failure to follow written or verbal instructions reflects poorly on the candidate, and in some cases, my result in disqualification. Public safety positions demand rigorous attention to detail and thoroughness. Sloppy, incomplete, or error filled paperwork indicates a lack of professional attitude.

2. Communications Skills: oral and written communications skills are critical in public safety occupations and are emphasized in the testing process. Practice through mock oral boards and video/audio taping of yourself. Make eye contact with all panel members and practice concise, confident answers. Eliminate distracting verbal and physical mannerisms. Oral communication skills and the ability to establish rapport with an interview panel can be developed through practice and honest feedback from others.

1. Preparation: you must prepare for EVERY stage of the hiring process. This includes the initial testing process, interviews, background investigation, etc. The prepared are noticed and so are the unprepared. Be noticed for the right reasons! Prepare for commonly asked oral board questions (and the written exam) through various resources and talking with others now working in the field. Maintain physical fitness and practice wellness. Very narrow point margins typically separate candidates, and diligent preparation often makes the difference between successful and unsuccessful candidates. You may not necessarily be the BEST candidate, but you certainly can be the BEST PREPARED candidate!