The Hiring Process

After an application is submitted, the steps below contain a description of the hiring process.

Step 1: The Personal History Statement (PHS).

This is the document used to investigate your background. The first page contains very important instructions. Please follow them. Attention to detail is an important part of this career. The document can be found at

Step 2: The Oral Board.

This is an interview panel consisting of sworn members of the department, a representative from the community, and a member of the City’s Human Resources Department. The interview typically lasts 20 minutes and is your only chance to demonstrate you are the type of candidate the Salinas Police Department is looking for. Dress to impress and bring your Personal History Statement. Candidates who pass the oral board are moved onto the background investigation.

Step 3: The Background Investigation.

A background investigation can take a month or more to complete. This includes a fingerprint check and polygraph examination. During this process, you will be asked to provide official legal documents such as a birth certificate, marriage decree, school transcripts and diploma(s), etc. The investigator will speak to your employers, friends, and family, to determine whether you have the moral character expected of a Salinas Police Officer. Successful completion of the background investigation will advance the applicant to Step 4.

Step 4: Psychological evaluation and medical examination.

The psychological evaluation consists of two written examinations and an interview with a psychologist. This assessment screens candidates for emotional and/or mental conditions including bias, which might adversely affect the exercise of powers of a police officer.

The medical evaluation is completed by a licensed physician and evaluates whether candidates are physically able to exercise peace officer powers. It includes hearing and vision tests, a physical examination, and drug screening.

Step 5: Complete an interview with the Chief of Police.

Applicants who complete all steps of the hiring process are scheduled to interview with the Chief of Police. This is your chance to impress the Chief and show you are the caliber of person worthy of being a Salinas Police Officer.