Examination Process

Application Process

Anyone meeting minimum qualifications may apply for open positions. Applications are available only when eligibility lists are being established and may be obtained from the Sheriff's Department, Jail, or Civil Service Office. Positions that are currently open are listed on the site. When applying, carefully read the announcement and submit ALL requested forms and information by the closing date.

Applicants meeting minimum qualifications will be invited to the exam. The exam process varies with each classification. Exams for Field Deputy, Corrections and 911 Emergency Dispatch positions are conducted by PublicSafetyTesting.com and meet National Standards. Exams for Control Room Operator, Records Clerks and Jail Cook are administered by the Civil Service Examiner. Successful applicants will be ranked on the eligibility register based on their exam score. Field Deputy and Corrections Deputy positions require a physical ability test. All positions involve an oral exam.
Background Investigation Process

Prior to appointment, an applicant must successfully complete a thorough sheriff's office background investigation. The background investigation may consist of, but is not limited to:

  • Personal history statement
  • Personal history check including an interview as well as criminal, credit, and reference checks
  • Polygraph (Upon conditional job offer)
  • Psychological examination (Upon conditional job offer)
Certification of Eligibility Lists

When a vacancy exists, the Sheriff's office requests certification of the applicable eligibility list and is given the top three names on the list. Those candidates are interviewed, and the hiring authority selects one to hire.
Oral Panel Evaluations

A limited number of top qualifying applicants from the written exam are often invited to the oral panel evaluation. The oral panel evaluation is designed to elicit responses that will demonstrate your knowledge, skills, and abilities relevant to the position for which you applied. Oral evaluation exams are used to test for interpersonal and communication skills, and for content knowledge. The questions are often asked, and the answers rated, by a panel, usually comprised of several subject matter experts.
Civil Service Register

Candidates who successfully pass all portions of the testing process are placed on a list with other candidates eligible to be hired for positions in that job classification. This list is called an "eligible register" or "eligible list," which is used to fill vacancies that occur in that classification over, typically, the next 12 months. Candidates are listed in the order of their final composite grade, which includes final exam scores, plus any points added for veterans' preference (RCW 41.04.010 as amended).
Eligible List

If a vacancy occurs and your name is listed in the highest group of scores being considered, you will be contacted and informed of the next steps in the hiring process.