City of Seattle
Getting an Interview
Getting an Interview
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E911 IT Coordinator Interview
I applied online. The process took 5+ months – interviewed at City of Seattle in March 2013.
Applied online. Job closed in early December, heard response back from SPD HR about scheduling a phone interview. Phone interview was scheduled and I found out the next business day (a Monday) that I was selected to go out for an in-person interview. After that interview, if chosen to proceed, then an interview with a background detective would be the following day. These were to take place on a Monday and a Tuesday.These interviews took place at the end of March.
The phone interview was scheduled for 45 minutes, it took about 30 minutes. The HR contact called beforehand to make sure everything was good go on my end, and then she emailed me who I was interviewing with, and the list of questions about 10-15 minutes prior. They were running late, so I had additional time to review the questions. The phone call came and they went one after another. The interviewers (a Capt, Lt, and the IT Director for SPD) were very professional throughout, and were personable even over the phone.
Communication from HR was very good throughout - responses to any email questions or phone calls were very prompt. After the phone interview and the notification of moving forward, a packet was mailed with details. There was a snafu with the date, they had printed the wrong dates, but they addressed that via email and all was squared away. Part of the application process also involved a 24-page background questionnaire - a personal history inventory. It was very thorough.
I made travel and hotel arrangements to arrive on the Saturday before the Mon/Tue interviews. The interview was at the West Precinct. The same people that conducted the phone interview were also conducting the in person interviews. A tour of the facility (E911 comm center) was also provided. This interview was also 45 minutes, and lasted about the same. I was advised I would be informed if I was selected to move forward later in the afternoon, and this was the case. I was asked to report for the background interview at 10AM the following day at Seattle PD HQ. This interview went over the PHI and some other paperwork and background types of questions. The detective was personable and everyone was polite. In total, this interview was about 2.5-3 hours long. I was advised I would hear back about when the background investigation would commence in about 4 weeks.
Sure enough, in almost exactly 4 weeks I heard from another detective who stated he had been given my case and he was starting with the background interview, and if I needed to notify my current employer that I should do so, as he will be calling. I did, and I heard nothing from him for two weeks. I touched base via email one afternoon, with no response from the detective, however the next day I got an response from the employment application system stating that of the two 'excellently qualified' applicants, the hiring manager chose the other person.
The day following my final notification, SPD posted an E911 Dispatcher position. My personal belief is that they hired internally, and the lower position opened up as positions above were filled or shuffled around. If this was the case it would have been nice to know to spare the expense and time to go through the process. Business is business, but I feel if an internal applicant is in the mix then they should exhaust that avenue before entertaining external applicants.
- The types of questions were "Think of a situation where you encountered a problem. Describe the problem, and what you did to solve the problem. Were you happy with the solution? What would you have done differently?" Answer Question