Police Officer (Entry Level/ Lateral)

San Jose, CA
San Jose Police Department


** TOP STEP SALARY $186,000 – Annually**
Applications are now open!
Visit: www.sjpdyou.com

Application Deadline: March 18, 2024
Test Date Deadline: March 25. 2024


You must meet the following qualifications. If you meet them, move on to step #1 of the Application Process

  • Must be up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccinations COVID19 Mandatory Vaccination Policy If you have any questions about the mandatory COVID vaccination policy, please contact the Office of Employee Relations at employee.relations@sanjoseca.gov.
  • No prior experience or training is required
  • At least 20-1/2 years old at the time of application / Maximum age is 70 years old (mandatory retirement age)
  • Legally authorized to work in the United States under Federal Law
  • Possession of a valid driver’s license authorizing operation of a motor vehicle in the U.S.
  • U.S. high school diploma or General Educational Development (GED); waived if you have earned a college degree from an accredited college within the U.S. View more information about Accredited College Credits
  • MUST POSSESS AT THE TIME OF APPLICATION, 40 semester college credits or 60 quarter college credits from a U.S. accredited college or university. Police Academy credits already earned are accepted as part of the educational requirement.
  • Military Veterans with an honorable discharge can substitute four (4) years of active duty service in the U.S. Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines or Coast Guard in lieu of the minimum college credit requirement – Reserve time excluded.
  • College units earned outside of the U.S. are accepted if translated and evaluated for this requirement.
  • Must have at least 20/40 corrected vision
  • No felony, domestic violence or misdemeanor assault convictions; cannot currently be on probation or parole
  • No financial accounts currently in “collections”


Step #1: Submit Application
If you meet the qualifications listed above Submit an Application.

Step #2: Supplemental Application
The Supplemental Application consists of additional information that aid us in processing your application and approximately 40 questions (PHQ), which allow an applicant to self-report behavior(s) determined to be related directly to job suitability.

Step #3: Written and Physical Agility Tests
Candidates must pass ONE of the below written examinations:

  • PELLETB: Complete the California P.O.S.T. Reading & Writing Test (PELLETB). Pass Point is a T-Score total of 50 or higher. Applicants are responsible for submitting verification of their exam results to the SJPD Recruiting Unit. Results are valid for three years. For more information or to register go to: http://www.theacademy.ca.gov/tests

– OR –

  • National Testing Network (NTN): Complete the National Testing Network Test (NTN). Pass Point scores are 65% Video, 70% Reading, and 70% Writing. Nationwide classroom and/or virtual exams available. Results valid for three years. NTN will forward exam results to SJPD Recruiting Unit. For more information or to register go to: https://www.nationaltestingnetwork.com/publicsafetyjobs/

Candidates must pass ONE of the below written examinations:

  • California P.O.S.T. Physical Agility Test (WSTB): which includes which includes a 99-yard obstacle course, 32-foot body drag (165 lbs.), six-foot chain-link fence climb, six-foot solid-wall climb, a 500-yard sprint and the completion of a one (1.5) mile run.

– OR –

  • The SJPD Physical Agility Test: which includes a 99-yard obstacle course, 32-foot body drag (165 lbs.), six-foot chain-link fence climb, a 500-yard sprint and the completion of a one (1) mile run.

Results are valid for one year. To register go to: http://www.theacademy.ca.gov/tests

We do not accept WSTB/Run results from outside agencies other than South Bay Regional Public Safety Training Consortium, or a California P.O.S.T Academy

Step #4: Oral Board Interview
This is a panel interview. Candidates will be asked five to eight questions, not necessarily police-related. Pass Point is 70% or higher. Results are valid for three years.

Candidates who successfully complete the Application Process will be placed on a list of eligible candidates. Candidates selected to advance to the Background Investigation Process will be notified approximately 3 weeks later.

Step #5: Background Investigation Process
Eligible candidates will complete a Personal History Statement (PHS) packet. Background investigators will then be assigned to assist candidates through the process.

Upon successful completion and review of the background investigation, the hiring board will make their employment selections. Those selected will receive a conditional offer of employment, contingent upon successfully passing a medical and psychological exam.

Step #6: The San Jose Police Academy
Police Recruits are considered a City of San Jose employee while attending the Academy, which is a 26-week program. Recruits are paid the current contract hourly rate while in the Academy. Upon graduation, you will enter the Field Training Program (FTO) for additional training as a SJPD officer on the street.

For the current Police Recruit hourly rate view the City Pay Plan.

Those who successfully complete the FTO program are assigned to the Patrol Division as a solo beat officer.

Step #7: The San Jose Police Field Training Program (FTO)
The Field Training Officer (FTO) program is the “street” training for officers just graduating from the academy. This is a period where newly graduated Police Recruit Officers will take what they learned in the academy and apply it to the street. New officers will be assigned to experienced SJPD Field Training Officers throughout the FTO program. Daily evaluations are given to document progress through this training period.

Those who successfully complete the Field Training Program are assigned to the Patrol Division as a solo beat officer. All officers, in their first three years of service as a San Jose Police Officer, must be assigned to the Patrol Division. After the three-year period, an officer is eligible to test for a specialized assignment or take the promotional exam for the rank of sergeant.