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City of Seattle Interview Questions in Seattle, WA

Updated Nov 20, 2014
Updated Nov 20, 2014
25 Interview Reviews

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Interview Experience

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25 Candidate Interview Reviews Back to all Interviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Senior Community Development Specialist Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3+ monthsinterviewed at City of Seattle in September 2014.

    Interview Details

    After applying online and emailing the Director, I was invited to have an in-person interview. The interview was for a panel of 5 people and lasted an hour. They were interviewing everyone that same day and I saw the person who went before me. The questions were given to me on a sheet of paper 10 minutes in advance so I could work on organizing my answers. After the interview I was given a written exercise that was timed. I emailed thank you letters to everyone on the panel, but didn't receive any responses. A month passed and still no word, so I emailed the HR coordinator who had set up the interview. No reply. I called and left her a message. No reply. exactly 6 weeks after the interview I received an automated system email saying that they has chosen another candidate. I was very disappointed with the lack of communication and human respect during the process.

    Interview Questions
    • Discuss a project you managed that had multiple layers   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
  2.  

    Principal Accountant Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at City of Seattle in September 2014.

    Interview Details

    A panel of 4 or 5 people give you a sheet of all the questions you need to answer in 45 min to one hour. After the oral interview, you have 75 minutes to answer 4 essay questions and two excel exercises. I haven't received word on next steps, so once I do I will update.

    Interview Questions
    • They give you a sheet of all the questions you need to answer in 45 min to one hour for the oral part of the interview. Luckily, I have a photographic memory. Below are the questions they will ask.

      1. Please describe your education and professional work experience as it relates to accounting. how do you feel your experience specifically relates to this position?

      2. What is fund accounting? What is an encumbrance in governmental accounting? What is an escrow payment/deposit and how is it reflected on the balance sheet?

      3. What is your experience working with accounting month-end and year end deadlines? Please describe the year end accrual process and your experience processing these types of transactions.

      4. Please describe your experience overseeing and supervising/leading accounting staff in meeting deadlines for account reconciliations.

      5. Please describe your experience working with Excel. At what level do you consider yourself (beginner, intermediate, advanced)? Do you have experience working with pivot tables?

      6. Please describe your experience with financial management and accounting systems. What systems have you used? How frequently do you work within the system and what functionalities do you utilize?

      7. Please describe your experience creating summary reports of complicated or detailed financial/accounting data for use by project managers and other non-accounting staff?

      8. Please describe any experience you have managing changes to systems or business processes due to organizational restructuring or technology changes?

      9. What is your approach to handling competing deadlines or multiple workload priorities?

      10. In what situations, specifically, would you consult with your supervisor to resolve work-related issues? In what situations, specifically, would you feel comfortable making decisions independently, without consulting your supervisor?

      11. Please describe your experience working effectively within a team in a diverse work environment.

      12. Please describe your experience working with non-financial staff.
       
      Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Senior Management Systems Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2+ weeksinterviewed at City of Seattle.

    Interview Details

    2 in person interviews. First was a very formal, panel style interview. I sat down and they immediately gave me a piece of paper with all the questions they were going to ask. They told me I could answer as many as I wanted but that I was responsible for keeping track of time. All questions were long situational type questions. Panel said they couldn't provide any additional info or answer questions...A little odd. Second interview was more laid back and just 2 people. Only 4 questions in an hour long interview. Also got the list of all questions at the beginning of the interview.

    Interview Questions
    • It was mostly unexpected that I didn't get any of the canned interview questions. Nothing like "what are your strengths/weaknesses?" or "tell me about a time you...?"   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    Hiring manager called to make offer, not HR. Stated the pay rate and that it was city policy to start you out at that "step." I accepted.
    Accepted Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
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  5.  

    Intern Electrical Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2+ monthsinterviewed at City of Seattle.

    Interview Details

    Set up the phone interview in May, and had one in-person interview at the Seattle Municipal Tower. The interview was about 30-45 minutes. The interview panel consisted of 6 different supervisors from different departments that were looking for interns.

    Interview Questions
    • Most questions were about basic EE fundamentals such as KVL and KCL, power factor, and how to calculate 3-phase power.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    No negotiation since this was for an intern position.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  6.  

    Student Engineering Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 5 weeksinterviewed at City of Seattle in March 2014.

    Interview Details

    Go to Seattle.gov and check the job postings. Keep in mind that there is a separate tab for student opportunities. Select the job posting you're interested in. Select "Apply". Create your profile. You have to essentially upload your entire resume, one section at a time. Similar to LinkedIn, and I believe there's an option to auto fill from LinkedIn. For my position as an Intern applicant, I needed to upload my Resume, Cover Letter, and a pdf of my Unofficial Transcript. Click submit and your good to go. Within a month, I was called or emailed about an interview. The interview was intimidating, but relatively easy. I was on one side of a conference table, with 5 engineers on the other side. I did ok, and was offered the position less than a week later.

    Interview Questions
    • Please explain how you would calculate 3 phase power.   View Answer
    Reasons for Declining

    I was offered a second interview immediately after the first. The other position was more interesting to me than what I was offered after the first interview.

    Declined Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
  7.  

    Intern Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at City of Seattle in September 2013.

    Interview Details

    Resume and cover letter was submitted. Interview was with a panel. There was a skills set before.

    Interview Questions
    • There was a case study that pertained to how I would solve a problem.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  8.  

    GIS Undergraduate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took a weekinterviewed at City of Seattle in May 2013.

    Interview Details

    2 interviews
    1st interview with teammates (3 people): They ask you where you see yourself in 5 years, what you are interested in, coursework, work experience, make sure you have at least 2 questions to ask them.
    2nd interview with group managers (3 people): To further get to know you and see which group you will fit into. Be engaged, they are looking for someone that fits the collaborative company culture.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  9.  

    Software Developer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 4+ weeksinterviewed at City of Seattle.

    Interview Details

    The interview process was very formalized. They want you to apply online thorough cutting and pasting your resume into their form rather than submitting documents and cover letters. I had to wait quite a while to hear from them, partly because there is a formal closing date. Then I was called for an interview with a group of managers, one internal client and one technical person. 30 minutes before the interview they gave me a sheet of paper with the questions they were going to ask and allowed me to prepare my responses. After the interview they administered a written technical test. Later, I was called back for a second interview with the supervising manager and the 5 or so person technical team. I was impressed that they included everyone in the process (and hopefully in the decision). I received a formal rejection email about 4 or 5 days later

    Interview Questions
    • I think there were two SQL questions and one on XML serialization, but none on any server programming at all and no request to demo code. The technical part was a written (with pen and paper) test.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  10.  

    Entry Level Officer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 daysinterviewed at City of Seattle.

    Interview Details

    Testing (written/physical), Oral Board Interview, Background Investigation, Psych Review, Polygraph, Health and Welfare assessment etc

    Interview Questions
    • Nothing unexpected here if you are interested in this career.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
  11.  

    E911 IT Coordinator Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 5+ monthsinterviewed at City of Seattle in March 2013.

    Interview Details

    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.

    Interview Questions
    • 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
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

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