Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
3.3 of 5 54 reviews
www.pa.gov Harrisburg, PA 5000+ Employees

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Apr 28, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting the Interview 

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Interview Experience 

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Interview Difficulty 

Average Difficulty
13 candidate interviews
Relevance Date Difficulty
in

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Employment Interviewer Interview

Employment Interviewer

I applied through other source and the process took 4 weeks - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Interview Details – Traditional union interview. Gave you the questions 10 minutes before to review. Panel interview where the 3 panelists were writing down your answers while you were speak. About 8-10 questions were asked.

Interview Question – Questions were relevant to job description.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – There is none

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Accepted Offer

Negative Experience

Average Interview

Auditor Interview

Auditor
Harrisburg, PA

I applied through other source and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in August 2012.

Interview Details – Going through the civil service process is a bit discouraging because you're sent all these announcements and you're to send them back if you're interested but you will probably not hear back from most of them. Once you get a call for an interview, that is about normal. You're asked the usual questions but may be interviewed by several people at once, so it can be more intimidating. After being hired, don't believe everything the HR rep tells you because apparently they don't actually know what they're supposed to know. I was told I wouldn't have any benefits for 6 months when actually medical kicks in almost from the beginning.

Interview Question – Probably where do you see yourself in 5 years   View Answer

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Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Program Administrator - Policy Specialist Interview

Program Administrator - Policy Specialist
Harrisburg, PA

I applied in-person and the process took 3 months - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in January 2011.

Interview Details – Civil Service hiring differs from Non-Civil Service Hiring. Take as many civil service tests as you can that are of interest. They will call you when an opening arises. For Non-Civil Service, keep looking for opportunities in each department and let them know of your interest. Call the Bureau of State Employment and/or the department directly.

Interview Question – All candidates for the same individual position get the same basic interview questions..."Tell me about yourself." "Tell me about a time you worked as part of a team." "How do you handle conflict?" "What would you do if you were asked to do anything that could be considered illegal?" They vary from time to time, department to department, and job to job.   View Answer

Negotiation Details – In my experience, starting salaries are pretty much established, but they can be adjusted upwards a little bit, particularly if you are the candidate they really want to hire for whatever reason that may be, (Best experience with lesser seniority, a push from the Administration to the department, etc.)

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Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

District Office Manager Interview

District Office Manager
Jefferson Hills, PA

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in November 2009.

Interview Details – Be ready to discuss your abilities with regards to managing employees, communicating with the public, and meeting any expectations of your employer.

Negotiation Details – Willing to negotiate, but this is a government position, so there are limits.

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Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Disrtict Office Manager Interview

Disrtict Office Manager

I applied in-person and the process took 2 days - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Interview Details – The process is developed to hire the most qualified individual. You must have good people skills and a command of the english language. Be a problem solver. Be loyal to your job, show up on time, properly dressed and will to do whatever is asked of you, in a polite and prompt manner. You should not questions the reason things are being done, your job is to do them.

Interview Question – None   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – I asked what the benefits werew an was told.

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Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Very Easy Interview

Clerk II Interview

Clerk II
Harrisburg, PA

I applied online - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in October 2011.

Interview Details – I filled out the online application and set up a day and time to take the test for the selected position. After taking the Test I awaited for a job interview survey via mail which I returned if I was interested or not. I was called for interview.

Interview Question – What questions would you ask of us before we end this interview.   View Answer

Negotiation Details – It was either accept or decline.

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No Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Appeals Referee Interview

Appeals Referee
Harrisburg, PA

I applied through other source and the process took 12 months - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in January 2009.

Interview Details – These are civil-service jobs. You apply by contacting the State Civil-Service Commission and scheduling an examination, which involves mostly a test of whether and how you would apply the Unemployment Compensation Law. When an opening comes up, they will notify you and you have the opportunity to request an interview. The highest-scoring applicants are notified first.

Interview Question – I was asked how I would handle a continuance request made under circumstances where granting it would cause administrative problems but denying it would cause prejudice to the parties.   Answer Question

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1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Information Technology Technician Interview

Information Technology Technician
Harrisburg, PA

I applied online and the process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in April 2010.

Interview Details – The first step is to schedule and take a Civil Service exam for the job title/position you are interested in. After testing, candidates are mailed their score results, and "availability notices" start to come in the mail to your home with open positions being interviewed for across all Commonwealth agencies and offices. You send back the ones that interest you designated on the form you wish to be considered for an interview. If they are interested, they will interview you and then possible select you from all interviewed candidates.

Interview Question – Why should we hire you over all the other eligible candidates we are interviewing?   View Answer

Negotiation Details – They call you and offer the position and you either decline or accept.

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1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Easy Interview

Clerk Typist II Interview

Clerk Typist II

I applied through other source and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Interview Details – Called in for interview, told they have numerous positions available for Clerk Typists in the Commonwealth and when could i start. Very simple interview process if i could work in a team setting and type 55wpm or more.

Interview Question – Tell us what your worst quality is?   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – What were you able to negotiate? What advice would you give others considering an offer?

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Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Customer Service Interview

Customer Service

I applied online and interviewed at Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Interview Details – With the state, there is generally just one interview, anywhere from two people to a small panel of up to five in my experience. They generally are only allowed to ask everyone the same exact set of questions with little to no deviation. Some interviewing managers/supervisors/HR personnel will look at you and nod or smile occassionally and other interviewers will almost never even look at you and will be writing the entire time. Do not let this scare you; this is how state agencies are in Pennsylvania. Some agencies are worse than others. This is part of the burocracy; I have been hired after almost every single interview of my entire life even after a panel of people barely looked at me in some cases.

Interview Question – Once I was asked an illegal interview question, meaning, the interviewers were not allowed to ask the question. It was age -related. I was extremely young but still had excellent experience under my belt and was more than qualified for the position. They kept suggesting that a lot of the people applying for the position had been in the next lower position for many years and are a lot older than I am so they wanted to know how I would deal with supervising those people who also applied for the supervisory position and harbor a lot of animosity against me for getting the position as so young a person and being their supervisor.

I answered the question beautifully, realistically, professionally, and thoroughly even though it was an illegal interview question. Still they continued to ask the same question several more times. Each time, I added a little more to my response even though my initial answer was thorough. They did not offer me the position. It is about the only time I ever have applied for a job and not gotten the job. However, they did repeatedly call me to ask that I apply for a job making the same amount of money as the one that I applied for. They also asked me to apply for another job that they had coming open. They actually told me that they would wait to post the vacancy until I went to take a test for the position so that they would be able to hire me! That is like unheard of with the state, especially considering the fact that they knew it would take a few weeks for me to get to take the test and a week or so thereafter until it could be graded and I could be put on the appropriate list for them to pull from for the position so that they could interview me for the position!
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