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Employment List and Certification

Employment Lists usually remain in effect for a period of one year, unless cancelled or extended.

The Housing Authority uses the "rule of list" in certifying names for hiring. The "rule of list" means there is no specified number of candidates interviewed for each position which becomes available. Candidates are referred based on their rank on the list and the number referred is relative to the number of openings and scoring. No candidates are "skipped" over in the interview process. An appointment to the open position can be made from any of the candidates participating in the interview process.

If your name is certified and you are not appointed to the position, you will maintain your place or move up on the list as others are appointed. Your name will be resubmitted as more vacancies occur. If you are offered employment and refuse two (2) times, your name will be removed from the list.


References are checked on all candidates considered for employment. It is incumbent upon you to see that a reference is given. You may be required by a former employer to sign a release in order for them to give a reference.

Conviction Records

If you have been convicted of any felony or misdemeanor resulting in imprisonment within five years you must indicate that on your application. This does not automatically disqualify you. Each case is evaluated on an individual basis dependent upon the requirements of the position. You may be asked to provide additional information. Failure to provide complete information on your application, could disqualify you from further competition or subject you to discharge if you are hired.

New employees are fingerprinted and photographed.

Driving Records

Some positions require a valid California Motor Vehicle License and a Motor Vehicle record which allows coverage under the Housing Authority's auto insurance policy. Candidates may be required to furnish a copy of their driving record.

Medical Examination

Before being appointed, you must pass a Housing Authority paid medical examination. At the time of the medical examination, you must meet the physical requirements necessary for successful performance of job duties.

You are strongly urged NOT to resign your present position until after successful completion of the medical examination.


The probationary period is an important part of the selection process and is used to closely observe the employee's work performance and conduct for success or failure in meeting job standards. The probationary period is six months for non-management positions and one year for management positions. An employee may be terminated at any time during the probationary period.

Additional Information on the Examination Process

Written Tests

For some positions, a written test is used to assess required job knowledge, skills, and abilities. Information on test subject matter is included in the job announcement.  Written tests may include math tests, multiple choice, fill in, true/false items, and reading comprehension selections.

Performance / Demonstration / Simulations Tests

A performance/demonstration test is required of some positions. These may consist of a typing test, use and identification of tools and equipment, and lifting heavy equipment. A simulated exercise may include a role play interacting with customers, developing a plan of action, or making a presentation to a group.

Personal Qualifications Appraisal Interview

All examinations include a personal interview. The purpose of the Personal Qualifications Appraisal Interview is to explore and evaluate the extent to which your knowledge, work experience, education, and personal characteristics match those that are needed for the job for which you are applying-

Interview questions cover a variety of subject matters related to the job. Interviewers will ask you questions designed to show your ability to perform the job. If you are applying for a Typist Clerk position, you may be asked about your experience performing office duties.

A panel of three individuals who are subject matter experts will evaluate your overall qualifications based upon your application materials, and the knowledge, skills, and abilities that you demonstrate in the interview. The members of the panel are usually not employees of the Housing Authority of the County of Alameda, however, are experts in a related field and may be from neighboring housing authorities.  They know the job requirements and are able to evaluate your qualifications for the job and determine your final ranking for the employment list.

Interviews generally last for approximately thirty minutes except for supervisory and management positions, which may last from forty-five minutes to an hour. A written exercise may be included as part of the interview process.

Prepare for the interview in advance. The following is a guide to assist you in preparing for an interview:

  • Review the job description and requirements in the job announcement and your background as it relates to the position.
  • Review technical materials, laws, or other pertinent job information.
  • Prepare to present your qualifications to the panel. Your job is to demonstrate you abilities to the panel.
  • Relax and act naturally. You will present your qualifications better if you are relaxed.
  • Listen carefully when you are asked a question, be sure you understand the question, then answer as correctly and honestly as you can.