Selection Process Tips

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 Preparing to Complete the Application  Submitting Your Application
 The Resume  Oral Board Interviews
 References  Results


Preparing To Complete The Application

We have developed a set of guidelines to assist you in making the best presentation possible. You will see some tips repeated several times, as these are points that are important. Our recruitments are competitive and the presentation of your application may determine whether or not you get an interview, as we consider the completed application to be an example of your finished work product.

The application is your introduction to a prospective employer. Take the time to read all the instructions and blanks before beginning to complete any portion of the application. This is our first opportunity to review an example of your finished work product.

The Human Resources Division receives a number of online applications that are incomplete. Either all fields are not filled in, including Education, Training, etc, or the application does not have the required documents attached. Once an application has been submitted, you can not revise your application packet. Should you have any questions regarding technical difficulties, please contact the NEOGOV helpline directly at 1-888-636-4681 prior to submitting your application. Please ensure your application is complete and accurate with all the required documents attached, before submitting it.

Remember: Your application reflects you; is it the best it can be? A poorly completed application may not be considered if we cannot read it, or if it is incomplete.

The Resume

A resume is usually not required, but it can be helpful. It gives you the opportunity to further detail your education and experience. However, we don't need a "book" on you. We are seeking concise and complete job related information.

Remember, a resume is added to supplement the completed application, not in place of it. In preparing a resume, please note:

  • List your objective. (What are you looking for in a job with the City of Santa Maria?)
  • Do not list personal information (e.g., age; marital status; or hobbies that don't relate to the position, etc.)
  • Education - list major coursework, not details of classes taken.
  • List volunteer experience that relates to the position.
  • Additional attachments such as certificates, letters of reference, and school transcripts should be provided only if requested on the recruitment announcement.


The first rule regarding references is to be certain you have the individual's permission to list their name on your application.

In listing references, we request that you provide us with at least three professional references. Do not list relatives.

Additional references may be requested if you are considered a top candidate. We will contact you if needed. If you are a top candidate, references will not be contacted without prior notification to you, and we are in receipt of your signed release, authorizing us to do so.

Prior To Submitting Your Application

Check for accuracy of your online application; ensure that any required attachments are in fact attached.

Checking for accuracy before submitting your online application is key, as you will not be able to make revisions once it has been submitted. If you do not have time to review your online application, click the "Save and View Application" button to access, review, and complete it at a later time.

Once again, make sure the online application is complete and accurate and that all required documents are attached. Your application will be on file under your profile in It may be helpful to review your application prior to an interview.

Once a recruitment has been open for ten (10) calendar days, the City reserves the right to stop accepting applications prior to the initially posted deadline if we receive a sufficient amount of qualified applications. Therefore, applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible in the process, to ensure review of their application materials. The recruitment is officially closed once it has been removed from the City's web site. For more information on the online hiring process, please see our job listings page.

Oral Board Interviews

If you have been selected for an oral interview, you will receive either a phone call from a Human Resources representative to schedule your interview time, or an email generated by Human Resources staff using NEOGOV requesting the applicant to self-schedule their interview. The oral board uses standardized, structured, job-related questions which will assess your overall qualifications for the position.


Candidates can check the status of their online application throughout the entire recruitment on the City's website using the log in information they provided when creating the application.

Each candidate who has attended an oral interview will be notified approximately within one week of their interview whether or not they have been recommended and certified to an eligibility list. Candidates who are placed on the eligibility list may be invited to a second interview, which is done by the hiring department, rather than the Human Resources Division.

Human Resources Division, 110 E. Cook Street, Room 1
Santa Maria, California 93454
(805) 925-0951 ext. 2203
Fax (805) 349-0657