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Ranking process after the oral board- anyone have statistics?


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  • Ranking process after the oral board- anyone have statistics?

    I recently completed an oral board with a local Police Department. It was about the hardest oral board I've been a part of, however I was called and notified they send the top 10 candidates to the polygraph, which I was scheduled for.

    Yesterday, I received my ranking- #5, with the department looking to fill 2 positions. To be honest, I'm not really sure if #5 is enough to land this career.

    Does anyone have any statistics or knowledge of the elimination process with police departments? I'm just wondering if I have a chance or not.

    Thank you for any advice or personal knolwledge
    Last edited by Ryandus; 02-02-2011, 01:03 PM.

  • #2
    You're not going to find any meaningful statistics--if there are any at all--about the chances of the #5 person getting hired for one of two positions. Do you still have a shot? Yes. What kind of chance? No one here can answer that. It depends on the strength of the applicant pool, especially the people above you. Someone can be kicked on the background or polly, another may turn down the position (it happens) and the chief may just not like someone else. You are still in the running and a viable candidate.


    • #3
      In my state, most agencies have what is known as the Rule of Three. It allows an agency to fill a vacancy from the top three scores on the hiring list. Under the Rule of Three, anyone in the top five scores could be picked to fill two vacancies, so you would be reachable. Assuming the agency you have applied with plays by has similar rules, you should be in the running for one of these positions.

      FWIW, testing is a time consuming and expensive process for an agency. When someone is eligible but not selected under the Rule of Three, their name is not removed from the list and the list is not thrown out. Instead, their name goes back on the list and they must be considered for the next vacancy under the Rule of Three procedure until the list is exhausted or expires.
      Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere


      • #4
        just joe- thank you. I know what you're talking about- I actually at one point had taken myself off of one list once because the department told me if I deploy (I'm in the Air National Guard), their department would be very hurt due to their size. Hopefully someone else gets hired on somewhere else or decides they want to go another direction....

        L-1- thank you for explaining that. It all gets a little confusing at times. I have heard of the rule of three before, but never really have been able to discern what that means. I appreciate your response, especially from such a high regarded contributor to this forum.

        Guess it's all the waiting game now.


        • #5
          L-1 has it partially correct... Be careful painting all departments in Washington as "Rule of Three" departments. Civil Service rules, or Personnel Rules, are a function of the city or county and not the State and can be quite different from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Yes, there are a lot of "Rule of Three" departments in Washington, there are also a lot of "Rule of Five" departments and other systems.

          Here in Tacoma we have some of the most generous Personnel Rules, we are allowed to look at the top 10 Eligible List "rankings" plus one more for each position we have open. A ranking can hold numerous candidates, based solely on their written test score (which includes any veterans preference points). We have 21 open positions today so by our Personnel Rules we can look at the top 10 rankings plus 21 more. That means there are 31 total rankings we can look at right now. Do we look at all of them? No, we start at the top of the list and work our way down. Those candidates we bring in for further testing and interviews are from the top of the current Eligible List.

          Another difference you may find from agency to agency in Washington... Some candidates who are passed up may stay on the list and be eligible for future consideration, some drop off. Here at Tacoma, if you are not hired off the list it means you failed at one of the hiring steps. Once you are passed over here you are taken off the list and eligible for testing again.

          Ryandus wanted some stats... Here are some of ours: Of all of the applications we receive we end up inviting about 33% to take the test (The rest are failures on a preliminary, auto DQ, Personal History Questionaire, or they do not reply to our e-mails and drop out of the process). Of those invited about 60% show up for the PAT test, about 66% to 75% pass the PAT and are invited to the written test. About 90% show for the written test and about 97-99% pass the written. Now you are ranked on the Eligible List.

          From the Eligible List about 50% pass the Suitability Board (which is based on a short one-hour interview going over a 36-page formal Personal History Questionaire). Those that pass the Suitability Board are invited to an Oral Board Interview. About 66% pass the Oral Board Interview and have background investigations started. About 75% pass the background investigation and receive a Conditional Offer of Employment and move on to the Poly, Psych and Medical. About 60% pass the Poly and move on to the Psych where about 95% or more pass. Over 99% pass the medical.

          With so many dropping off in the early stages of the hiring process you can see where as long as you rank high enough on the Eligible List, pass each step and stick with it through the hiring process you should do well. The biggest hurdle for most is being patient with the whole process.
          Last edited by TPD Recruiter; 08-30-2010, 10:03 AM.


          • #6
            TPD Recruiter- thank you very much for those statistics. I'm actually suprised by the polygraph statistic, losing 40% of applicants is a big deal. I remember my first polygraph though- I was very nervous and was thinking of things my parents and family had done during the interview- was told I still passed though.

            I believe the department has the same policy as your department (rule of 10). I do believe they keep those on the list though unless they failed a portion. I agree, patience is a tough one. I think it's so hard for both parties- on one hand, hiring qualified applicants you trust to work within your city and the citizens is a huge responsibility, and as an applicant, the process takes so long and it's so hard to get into that I'm sure a lot of people take other job offers or go different routes by the time the job is offered.

            The sutability board is a new concept to me, I don't think I've every heard of that. I'm sure that process saves a lot of time and money sometimes. It must be hard to pay to have an applicant get all the way to backgrounds before them getting disqualified- much better to catch it early on.

            Thank you again for your time and the statistics
            Last edited by Ryandus; 02-02-2011, 01:03 PM.


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